Jul 28, 2014
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Leave a Legacy

RSS By: Kevin Spafford, Legacy Project

Kevin Spafford is Farm Journal’s succession planning expert for the Farm Journal Legacy Project.  He hosts the nationally-televised ‘Leave a Legacy’ TV, facilitates an ongoing series of workshops for farm families across the U.S., and is the author of Legacy by Design: Succession Planning for Agribusiness Owners.

Git 'Er Done!

Mar 19, 2014

iStock Crop DusterFrom Legacy Moment (03.07.2014).
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For many an agripreneur, knowing you can do it better is what gave you the confidence to get started in the first place.

For the do-it-yourselfer (DIY), succession planning can be difficult, but not impossible. If you're self-reliant, comfortable with your abilities and don't mind a challenge, then get started with your succession plan and enlist professional assistance as needed. Immediate challenges will include creating an environment for good communication, focusing on common objectives, ensuring readiness, following a proven planning process and committing to take each next step. But it can be done.

Follow these five steps to get started:

1. Learn the fundamentals of succession planning. A person facilitating the process must know the common cares, concerns and questions related to succession planning. The DIY should be prepared to discuss succession planning with family members, loyal employees and alliance partners.

2. Improve family communication for planning success. The outcome will be a direct result of family communication and the learning environment you create. A person must be able to create an agenda for the family meetings, keep good records and follow-through.

3. Know the succession planning resources available to assist your efforts. The Farm Journal Legacy Project has plenty of good information, appropriate tools and valuable experiences to help you in the planning process. Focusing on common goals and committing to action is the surest way to plan for success.

4. Value succession planning for you, the family and your operation. Early in the process, it's important to lay out a timeline for transition; it'll inform the process and help the family gauge their progress based on specific milestones.

5. Commit to action. As with everything else in life, nothing happens until you act. Yes, even a do-it-yourselfer can take the steps necessary to plan success. Commit now to achieve your goals and leave a lasting legacy.

News & Resources for You:

Indecision is a choice, and leaving things to chance is never the best option. Now is a good time to git 'er done.

Are you inclined to forge ahead briskly, or are you more the cautious, reluctant type? See what eLegacyConnect's quick self-assessment has to say about your own natural tendencies.

Note:  For those of you who missed last week's Legacy Project Workshop in Syracuse, NY (weather-forced cancellation), we again apologize for the inconvenience.  We'll get back with you soon about resolution! 

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