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Your farming business: Tips for productive meetings

Sara Swenson
Educational Opportunities: 
Home > Education & Events > April 2020 > Your farming business: Tips for productive meetings

From simple work scheduling discussions to succession and transition planning, meetings are a key tool for your farming business. Today we're talking about family meetings and the importance of pausing within your daily schedule and making time for family meetings all throughout the year. There are a lot of different opportunities to have a family meeting. It could be to transfer knowledge on a specific task or activity, or it could be a more formal meeting once a year or when you're talking about transition or any other important items that come up throughout your year.

As you're planning for your family meeting, it's really important to establish some ground rules on the front end, have an agenda, and make sure you determine who the right people are to have at your meeting.
Is it a good idea to have your outside advisors? Is it necessary to have all of your family members, whether they're involved in your business or not? All of those things are critical to determine prior to the meeting actually occurring.

An Agenda
When you think about preparing for your family meeting, there's a lot of things that you can put on the agenda. It's really important to make sure that your agenda is dialed in and targeted to the specific topic that you want to cover at that meeting. People can sometimes bring a lot of emotion to meetings, so if you can really have a dialed in agenda and make sure that you're sticking to the topics, you'll be a lot more successful long term.

The Location
Another thing to keep in mind as you're working through preparing and planning for your meeting is to make sure you hold the meeting in a venue that is neutral to all parties. So, maybe it is not one of the family members' houses. Maybe it's not the office of your business. It could be at a different setting. 

These are just a couple things for you to think about as you're starting to prepare for your family meetings. Practicing these steps will improve communications and productivity. Good luck!
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