Farmers asked for communication

WORKSHOP: Jeanette Long from Ag Consulting Co. led the workshop in Cummins on Tuesday.
WORKSHOP: Jeanette Long from Ag Consulting Co. led the workshop in Cummins on Tuesday.

A WORKSHOP in Cummins on Thursday highlighted the need for farmers to develop their personal communications skills for their ongoing agriculture business.

The workshop, What Makes us Tick, was held at the Cummins Hotel and was the first of the Lower Eyre Agricultural Deve lopment Association's (LEADA) workshops funded by the EP Rail Levy.

The workshop tackled topics such as team building, communication styles, personality types and listening skills.

With only seven participants, LEADA executive officer Helen Lamont said there was a feeling this was going to be the hardest workshop to attract farmers to.

"We were hoping for more, we did a bit of promoting for this but it does come back to farmers' priorities being in the technical side of farming, not the personal side," she said.

Jeanette Long from Ag Consulting Co led the workshop, and went through the different aspects of effective communication and teamwork with the participants.

Mrs Long, who is a former Eyre Peninsula resident and teacher at Cummins and Tumby Bay, said with farms getting bigger and bringing on more employees, there was a need for farmers everywhere to become effective communicators.

"One of the things I'm very passionate about is succession planning and doing succession planning well, good succession planning is underpinned by good communication skills," she said.

"Farmers need to understand good communication skills and understand their staff and what motivates them."

Mrs Long said she believed these skills were equally important because the people who ran businesses also made decisions and they needed to understand what impacted their decision making.

LEADA is hopeful for numbers at its three remaining workshops, the next one on August 26 will focus primarily on succession planning.

Ms Lamont said the following workshops were expected to be well attended as they deal with topics of more interest to farmers.

"The next lot of workshops are already drawing broader interest because they're talking about succession planning, governance and business risk management," she said.

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