GFM Network News


Knowing exactly where you’re starting from, and with what resources, leads to more efficient decision-making.

Introducing next steps into your farm operation

Next Steps: Consider a situational analysis in order to set goals for your farm

Reading Time: 9 minutes Stories in Country Guide often explore the latest, the most innovative and sometimes the boldest in on-farm business management strategies across Canada. These stories are inspirational, aspirational, thought-provoking — but not always accessible for every farmer. In this new series ‘Next Steps,’ we focus on continuous improvement; the proven practices, the processes and sometimes just […] Read more

Even in this digital era, it's still important to build a good relationship between you and your advisor.

Get more from your farm advisors

Boost the returns from your investment in advisors’ fees with these tactics

Reading Time: 5 minutes Hiring business advisors and consultants is becoming a top habit on Canada’s most profitable farms, as identified in Farm Management Canada’s Dollars and Sense study. Whether it’s in accounting, law, human resources, succession planning, agronomy, livestock nutrition, communications or marketing, advisors are filling in the gaps in the farm team’s expertise. It turns out, though, […] Read more


Research proves it. The more digital your business becomes, the more important soft skills are to your success.

The skills you’ll need as farms become more digital

Technology is transforming agriculture at a speed we hardly grasp. Will yours be among the farms that emerge stronger?

Reading Time: 5 minutes In October, Country Guide covered the report “Farmer 4.0: How the Coming Skills Revolution Can Transform Agriculture” published by RBC, with its emphasis on how the era of super-automation will change how we farm. “As Canadian farmers leave traditional tasks to smart machines, and focus on strategy and systems, they’ll be better positioned than ever […] Read more

Farm CEO: The complete farm executive

Reading Time: 3 minutes What does the basic mindset of a farm CEO look like? I’m currently using a three-factor model to describe what I think makes a highly effective farm executive. The first is business results. Obviously at the end of the day if we don’t define success and achieve objectives that keep us in business, never mind […] Read more


A business whose culture doesn’t support the values of its employees will ultimately struggle.

Farm CEO: Culture matters

Are you paying attention to the culture of your farm or farm business?

Reading Time: 3 minutes Why should we care about the culture of our business? Culture captures the essence of what makes a business tick, yet it is poorly understood. Culture has reached cliché status as a management concept, and that’s regrettable because understanding what culture really is, its connection to leadership, how it is created and how it has […] Read more

Having farm meetings that work

These strategies can make family meetings a core part of your farm culture

Reading Time: 5 minutes We’re too busy.” If that’s your reason for putting off holding family business meetings on your farm, you’re not alone.Agricultural business advisors hear their clients say it time and again to explain why they haven’t started holding farm meetings. Except as excuses go, this one doesn’t really hold water. Too often, in fact, it’s a […] Read more


Developing a CEO mindset and the skills needed to serve that mindset are essential if Canadian farms are to succeed.

Become a farm CEO: Why make the shift?

Executive-level behaviour is good for both the farm and farmer

Reading Time: 3 minutes It’s time that farmers develop beyond being the world-class farm managers they are today. That’s the vibe I’m getting from clients, program participants and industry professionals. The conversation around what abilities Canadian farmers need to develop, and how they should acquire them, is already underway. If a farmer is successfully operating his or her business, […] Read more

Dealing with problem employees effectively

Instead of firing them, use these tips to coach problem cases into good employees

Reading Time: 4 minutes It’s getting tougher to find and keep good employees. Nor, by all indications, is the situation going to improve anytime soon. According to the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council’s newly released Labour Market Forecast for the next decade, farmers can expect an already tight labour market to get even tighter. According to the council’s survey […] Read more


Investment model offers opportunity for farm expansion

Could Joelle Faulkner’s partnership concept work on your farm?

Reading Time: 9 minutes It’s a common scenario: Farmer Bill has been renting land from his neighbour for years but the time has come and he is ready to sell. He wants Bill to have first refusal on the land, but Bill has just financed a new barn and bought a new combine, so he’s too over-extended to raise […] Read more

“Good retention starts with good recruiting. The challenge is finding people who are willing to be there for the right reasons…”

Tapping into a new source of farm workers

Traditional labour supplies are running short. Why that may not be a bad thing

Reading Time: 5 minutes With farms getting bigger and with rural populations getting smaller, it’s no surprise you’re having trouble finding local employees with the farm skills and the experience you want. That doesn’t mean you have no options, however. The solution may be to look beyond candidates with ag experience and to begin to look in other sectors […] Read more