The most profitable businesses have clear goals and a strategic plan to implement their vision of where and how they wish to grow their business. This was one of the first and most important business lessons I learned in NZ. I always thought this and have highlighted it in previous articles. Some we saw were one unit, some were multiple unit farms with different goals and strategies. The key was how they used their goals and vision to implement their strategic plans. These plans and goals firstly were agreed by family and partners involved in the business. Firstly, they were written, simple, communicated regularly to staff and third parties and most importantly reviewed regularly. The more often these key things happen with your goals, vision, plan, the more likely you will achieve it.
As a result, growth and change happen quicker on these farms, decision making is easier and more consistent. It becomes easier for staff to buy into change as they know why it is happening. Investment decisions are related back to key principles/elements of the strategy.
“It takes new people one year to understand the why in our business”- Colin Armer. (The largest dairy farmer in NZ).
This is key to motivating and retaining staff longer term. We saw contract farm managers paid on a $/kg milk solids produced who were happy to dry cows off and cull cows early in a drought situation, because they understood the longer term vision for the business which ultimately was more profitable for the business and the farm manager.
Contact Gerard at firstname.lastname@example.org or your local FCG office for help in writing your business goals and putting them into action in a strategic plan for your farming business.