Category: Decision Making

The Power of Visuals

flip chart discussion

The flip chart is one of the most important pieces of equipment on the ranch. If you are not using one, it is likely costing your businesses tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands each year. Every time you have a meeting on the ranch or when discussing something as a ranch team someone should […]

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What Can We Do vs. What Should We Do?

brainstorming

In managing through the recent drought covering much of cow country, I hear a lot of discussion around questions like:  “How many cows ‘can’ we keep?”;  “How much hay do we have on hand?”; “How much hay can we afford to buy?”. These questions are not very helpful. They miss the larger point. In looking […]

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Systems Thinking

spider web

I was recently given some book recommendations by Executive Link member, Shanon Sims. Book recommendations are everywhere right now, but when someone you respect says “read this book” you pay attention. Shanon recommended The Fifth Discipline by Peter Senge. The Fifth Discipline is about training yourself to think in terms of systems. Humans are predisposed […]

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Two Mornings to Change Your Business

EL Summer Meeting

If you’ve been through the Ranching For Profit School you recognize the importance of working ON the business (WOTB). If blocking out time for WOTB is challenging for you, you aren’t alone. Scheduling adequate time to work on the businesses is often THE most difficult challenge RFP graduates face when they get home.   The problem […]

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The Ranch Business Time Bomb

Abandoned house

Think of a ranch business you know of, that is no longer in business. Now I want you to think of the underlying cause for that business no longer being around. Was it related to production? Did the cows not breed, the calves weren’t big enough to bring in decent money or was the death […]

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Business IQ

mother and child working

Dr. David Kohl of Virginia Tech has a solid grasp of what it takes to run a successful ag business. He has spent a career speaking, studying and writing on what separates those who are successful in ag business management from everyone else. I was recently reintroduced to Dr. Kohl’s Business IQ test and want […]

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Drought Planning

drought road

Millions of dollars in bad decisions are made every year as ranches manage through dry-times. Not to mention the damage to pasture heath that occurs through delayed decision making. Primarily, hope of moisture to come and emotional attachment to breeding stock, drive the procrastination of necessary decisions. Having a well-developed drought plan is something that […]

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That Crazy Grazing Stuff

grassland

“You guys don’t tell people to do that crazy grazing stuff with the electric fence do you? Because if so, I’m not coming.” That was an email I recently received asking about our Ranching for Profit School. I responded with a polite and honest answer but the more I think about maybe I should have […]

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Adding a New Enterprise

sheep

We are in the final days of our 2021 winter Executive Link meetings where Ranching for Profit alumni form peer advisory boards and look into each other’s businesses for strategic level advice. One issue that frequently comes up is the evaluation of adding a new enterprise to the operation. The operator is often excited about […]

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The Power of a Profit Target

Longs Peak

Having a clear target is a powerful thing. A few years ago, I led my son’s scout troop to climb Longs Peak in Colorado. We hit the trail about 2:30 AM and watched the sun rise while sitting above the tree line. As we entered the most difficult stretches, we all struggled at different times. […]

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