Missouri Dairy Business Update

Volume 18, Number 4
April 2018

Farm Goals hard to make, harder to keep

Reagan Bluel, Dairy Specialist University of Missouri-Extension


Whether its baseball or cattle, success begin with planning and timing.

This story all begins in the dead of winter when many dairy producers gathered at University of Missouri Extension winter meetings held throughout the state.

"As an Extension agent, the winter meeting season is a bit like chopping silage, long days and worry that everything will finish up just right and set you up for a good year," said Reagan Bluel, dairy specialist for MU Extension. "This year I tried something new to extend the impact of the day."

At each winter meeting Bluel passed out brightly colored cards to dairy farmers. "The looks on their faces screamed, "What do you want me to do with this?" since neon pink might not be their favorite color."

The colors served as a bold reminder. She asked the dairymen to jot down a goal they would like to be reminded of in two months ranging anywhere from tiling the 40 to folding all the laundry. Out of the more than 80 dairy producers who went through this experience, only a few started to write down goals immediately. Many paused before they put their ideas together. The envelopes were sealed, collected and stored.

Two months later, the self-addressed envelopes were mailed to remind producers of their short-term goal. "I hope that the cards were a friendly reminder - the perfect pitch to help encourage a home run," said Bluel. "Everyone is about to get very busy with planting and hay season - I hope that on a rainy day, they'll pause to think about the future, short- and long-term, and jot it down." The goal could be on a note and mailed as described, or simply turn up the calendar a couple pages.

If you want to learn more about setting farm based benchmarked goals call your local dairy specialist, or join Reagan at June Dairy month field day to discuss this further on June 8, 2018 at Gunter's Dairy in Conway, MO from 10am - 1pm.