By Albert Makendenge
Whilst there may not necessarily be a monetary insurance policy that you can purchase to protect a family farm from personal drawbacks, setbacks or even illness. You can always create your very own whole farm plan or put systems in place to help one’s family farm to stay on course when difficulties unfold. Below we have listed some steps to follow if you need help to come up with this kind of plan for yourself.
- Taking stock of the family
This involves looking at the history of the family and its farm particularly when it comes to norms and values, past successes and past disappointments. Then determining what to keep, and how best to tackle problems should they occur again.
- Individual assessment
Everyone should go through an individual assessment of their goals, strengths and weaknesses to determine where they need improvement or sharpening. That way everyone is better positioned to adequately play their role in contributing towards success.
- Business analysis and goal setting
This means taking a look at where the business is now, what the business has now in terms of resources and setting targets of where it wishes to go or what it seeks to achieve in the future.
- Writing a mission statement
This is a fundamental statement that describes the fundamental reason for the business to exist. It identifies the underlying values that are going to push your family and the business forward.
- Writing up a business plan
A business plan examines the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that the company faces and lays out the ways that the business should follow in their production and operation practices.
- Planning for retirement
Getting set and prepared for a time when those who have served for long need to move on in such a way that their needs don’t affect the performance and profitability of the farm.
- Coming up with a transition strategy
This simply describes how the farm will be transferred to the next generation.
- Making a estate plan and outlining an investment plan
This details how the farm’s assets will be distributed and what business or ventures to channel capital into.
- Setting goals in all areas and planning for unexpected
Set short, mid and long term goals for every aspect of the business and look carefully and wisely into the not so obvious things that could happen. Only then can a farm face the future with confidence.