Written by Mark Morton, Principal, AgriBusiness Concepts.
Don’t waste a good crisis, the translation being: opportunities often arise from a crisis.
Lately our conversations are dominated by depressing discussions around sheep and cattle markets, and for those north of Dubbo you can throw in climate volatility too. I can’t help but ask if this does not present an opportunity to take the step into the “pink hoop” and look around.
I had the privilege of chairing a webinar last month with Nigel Kerin, Kate Brabin and Robert Bell where we worked through making considered decisions in a volatile climate environment, the challenges associated with the booms and busts of Australian Agriculture. We came to the conclusion that these challenges will be met by developing intelligence processes on farm.
Here’s two examples:
1. Rigid, structured systems to report where you are at, ie cash reserves, livestock inventory, grass budget. Disciplined execution of these systems is mission critical to success.
2.Surround yourself with good people, so often when confronted by challenging circumstances we revert to making a decision in isolation, or if it’s a husband and wife, someone will get it wrong, or if you both agree, there’s a good chance you both get it wrong!
Either expanding or creating that network creates the capacity to critically debrief, what worked, what did we learn, or what are we learning now. The hard part will be to remove emotion. What’s the key to removing emotion I hear you ask? Data collected with rigidity and discipline.
There is a ripper of a podcast from Ben Law – The Financial Bloke, “Is it time to break up with your mediocre accountant”, (by the way Ben is an accountant), he talks about building that support network.
The best time to fundamentally reshape your farming business was probably 10 – 15 years ago. The second best time is right now. Systems like AgriWebb are a strong step in the direction of resilience and stability on farm.
Sarah Henderson (@OutbackWisdom) has this fantastic quote, “Don’t wait for the light to appear at the end of the tunnel, stride down there and light the bloody thing yourself.”