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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.

Leadership Matters

Jul 05, 2011

iStock Farmers HandshakeFrom Legacy Moment eNewsletter (07/01/2011)
Please join us for future issues, delivered via email each Friday.

Leadership matters. Three things you should consider:

1. Family farms have different goals than more conventional businesses and publicly owned companies. Family operations are oriented to serve a broad set of objectives that include the demands of the family, the needs of the operation and the expectations of the community.

2. Family operations have a greater potential for long-term conflict. People are inherently emotional beings. The atmosphere of a family business causes some to respond inappropriately to disagreement and conflict. Conversely, the connections within a family business may inspire others to respond with more commitment and understanding.

3. Leadership succession is far more important for family farms than nonfamily farms, because what is at risk may be absolute survival. Due to the personal nature of the endeavor and the breadth of family that may be actively involved, failure can be devastating—especially when you consider that most family operations comprise an overwhelming majority of the family’s net worth.

Leadership matters. With so much at stake, don’t leave it to chance.

News & Resources for You
Leadership development may be the single biggest gap in any succession plan. Our Leadership Skills Inventory can help.
The important role of parents—both in the family and on the farm. Fathers and the Family Farm, courtesy of Case IH.
The key qualities of leadership: Fearless, visionary, industrious. (Kevin Spafford for Farm Journal, March 2009)
Leadership begets leadership, so Lead On! (Jeanne Bernick for Top Producer, October 2009) 
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