Champion for Agriculture – Farmer, Professional Speaker, Family Business Consultant
West Branch, IA
I'm a Master for those in family business. Working with hundreds of farm and ranch families have taught me what works and what doesn't. In my keynotes and workshops, those lessons are wrapped with humor and real life stories to make sure farmers and ranchers honor the family by doing the business right.
I'm also a Maverick in family business because of my experience and approach. I've learned the need for and benefits from a mirror, box of tissues, roll of duct tape and a 2x4. With plain speaking and a heart-full of caring, those I work with learn the steps to increase productivity, profitability and peace of mind.
My main concern is that families in production agriculture are very good at managing weeds, seeds, feeds, breeds, money and marketing....but many are lousy at selecting a correct or next leader in a family business. The result is the implosion of the business and resentment and disillusionment within the family. My workshops specifically address this issue so that we don't have a leader by “default”, but rather by intentional choice.
There is a need to reframe what we (the producers) do in term of what people (the consumers) are really buying. (By the way, it's not commodities or livestock!) We must always remember that value is in the eyes of the purchaser, not the producer. As an Agvocate and professional speaker, it's great to open the eyes of producers and broaden their horizons as we focus on value and target our messages.