(Rural Roots Canada) – It can be a daunting task getting the different family generations to the table to talk farm transition, but it doesn’t have to be.
Elaine Froese is a Farm Transition Coach, professional speaker, and author. She’s also known as the farm whisperer. She says if you want to get everyone together to get the conversation started, you need one person to get it going.
“We’ll get it done after harvest, freeze up, after Christmas, after mom and dad are back from Arizona, after Easter, after planting, after seeding, after fungiciding. See what I just did? I went through an entire farm year,” Froese says.
Procrastination is not a strategy, says Froese, and one of the biggest reasons for procrastination is an innate fear of a family blow-up, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
“Conflict that is resolved is a beautiful thing. That’s when you get clarity.”
Froese suggests everyone involved in farm succession needs to self-reflect about what is scaring them from having the conversation.
“Why are you not doing the work? The reason is that you’re afraid. So, do some self-reflection on what you’re afraid of, why you’re not coming to the table, do you need insight, and do you need to know how to communicate more clearly?”
There are also language and phrases you can use when having these talks so that everyone can find common ground on succession.
“Questions like, where is that written? Or, that was then, and this is now. I believe every family can have harmony. But you need to put in the work.”
If you have a question for Elaine you can reach out to her on the AGvisorPRO app.