By joining an internet-based peer group, producers can uncover new solutions to old problems, evaluate operational plans and discuss business challenges and opportunities with fellow farmers in a confidential setting. That’s according to Andy Larson, 36, of Larson Farms in Green, Kan.
“Our businesses, while they’re all unique, still deal with similar issues, similar challenges,” says Larson, who is a member of an online peer group within Farm Journal’s Top Producer Executive Network (TPEN). “After one day, it was very apparent we had a lot in common and were able to decide on topics and discuss in depth what we’d like to see going forward.”
Farm Journal will launch its fourth online-based Leading Producer Peer Group from Jan. 23-24 in Chicago. Members will then have the opportunity to attend the annual Top Producer Seminar Jan. 24-27.
At the initial meeting, participants will network with peers and their facilitator; participate in a business development workshop; and develop individual and group goals.
Over the course of the next year, participants will take part in six web-based video conferences, each two-and-a-half hours in length. During those sessions, farmers will:
- Join in a 45-minute interactive discussion with a selected presenter on an industry hot topic chosen by group members. Popular topics include marketing, landlord relations, growth strategies, human resources and Big Data utilization.
- Participate in a Q&A on critical business topics with their peers, the facilitator and the presenter
- Share and hear progress updates regarding personal goals
- Membership in each peer group is limited to fewer than a dozen participants to encourage robust discussion and collaboration.
“Initially, when deciding whether or not to join this group, I decided it would be interesting to find out how to do things that we do better—maybe learn new ways of approaching different issues,” Larson explains. “But I think the most important [benefit has been] to build connections with like-minded individuals where we can confidentially discuss all these issues that we have to tackle on a day-to-day basis, and maybe discuss new things out there that I had no idea existed.”
For more information about the new Leading Producer Peer Group launching Jan. 23-24, 2017, in Chicago, call Lindsey Young at 217-498-1278 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.