Emotional Farming

You have an emotional connection to the food you grow. Your farm and everything on it is your life. From planting to harvest, every up and down – especially the downs - can really mess with your head. And when you’re trying to capture every nickel and dime that you can, you might not be executing as well as you should. That’s when the stress kicks in. Find someone to help you think through the coming year.

Greg Lumsden is a product line leader with Cargill Market Guide. He says it’s all about setting goals and getting back to the blocking-and-tackling of a marketing plan.

"Understanding your true numbers, your revenue targets and what those numbers mean to your marketing plan. I think another key thing for our farmers is understanding key time frames. There’s going to be two or three times that are good opportunities to sell throughout the marketing year," he says. "Identify those sales targets, you’ll set firm offers based on profitability and market opportunity, and then make sure that you take the emotion out by executing on that and leaving those offers in place."

Let go of last year and talk through what the possibilities look like this season.

"We sit down with clients and look at what is a conservative estimate, what’s your production, and come up with something that’s as accurate as we can possibly forecast," says Lumsden. "And then from there, we typically will look at 10%-15% sales, the thought being we want to make a sale that’s meaningful to the customer’s marketing plan that’s actually going to have an impact and yet leave some bushels to sell as new opportunities come up."

Remind yourself what you can control and what you can’t – and laugh. It’s good therapy.