How to make the most of all those meetings

Mixed fortunes this summer: weather, yields and quality. That’s my summer report.

As autumn activities get into full swing, so does the life of a Knowledge Exchange Manager. Much of my summer has been spent planning the winter programme of Monitor Farm meetings and conferences, preparing benchmarking activities and also sorting a study trip to Germany.

Wantage Monitor Farm Discussion

Wantage Monitor Farm Discussion

All the meetings are detailed on the AHDB website but you should also get a notification from me nearer the time. There is a range of topics on agronomy, labour and machinery management, business skills and succession planning.  The diary is crowded – and that’s just AHDB events. How do you decide what to go to?

Whatever the type of meeting, they are all opportunities to exchange knowledge, test thinking and learn new ideas. This process can occur anywhere from in the car park to the formal part of the meeting. There are two key questions I believe you should come ready to ask yourself and actively seek an answer to:

  1. So what? So what does this information mean for me and my business? What is the benefit? Time saving? Cost saving? Improvement making?
  2. What is the one little piece of information that I can get form this meeting that will be important for me?

The AHDB ‘Brexit bucket list’ has been much publicised since the Cereals event back in June to help farm businesses get fit for the future. One of the points in this list was to challenge whether costs of production are known or understood. If you do nothing else this winter, get involved in benchmarking. It could be the one little golden nugget that will be worth a fortune to you.

PhilipDolbear

PhilipDolbear

Taunton-based Philip joined AHDB Cereals & Oilseeds from HSBC Agriculture, where he was Senior Agriculture Manager in the South West region. Having studied agriculture at university, Philip spent seven years as a Senior Business Management Consultant with ADAS before developing his career with HSBC. He brings substantial business management experience to the Regional Team, and a detailed understanding of the complexities of the industry in the region.

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