GFM Network News


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

In a farm family context, the Goal Tree can help parents explain their decisions to the next generation.

The Goal Tree

Big corporations use this decision-making system. Should you too?

Reading Time: 7 minutes We all know what it’s like to sit at the kitchen table with the whole family and to ask yourself, “Should I bring it up now? We’re all together… is this the right time to talk about the next big step for the farm?” Agriculture prides itself on its family foundations. But sometimes, those family […] Read more


Brother and sister Tom and Suzanne Pettit didn’t grow up thinking they’d farm together, but once they hit their 20s, they started seeing how well it might work. Today, they are consistently hitting their quality and financial targets, and they have learned how to help each other perform at the top of their game.

The brother and sister advantage: Tom and Suzanne Pettit of Misty Glen Holsteins

There can be a kind of magic in a brother-sister relationship that helps them run a better farm business

Reading Time: 5 minutes A small but growing number of brother-and-sister farms across Canada are rewriting the rules on how families farm together in a new spirit of gender equality. Even more than that, though, they’re showing the rest of the industry how to step up their productivity with new management strategies that let every member of the team […] Read more

Farm incomes set to fall from record high

Reading Time: 2 minutes Reuters — Canadian farm incomes look set to fall in 2016 after a year of record profits, but will still reach above-average levels, according to a report from the federal government. Rising receipts for crops and livestock have boosted incomes in recent years, due to greater demand in developing countries and a weak Canadian dollar, […] Read more


Farm kids: Don’t worry about wages

Reading Time: 2 minutes A new study by Cornell University agricultural economists says family members who work on the family dairy farm make $22,000 less annually than comparable hired managers, but are handsomely compensated with “socioemotional” wealth. “While $22,000 seems like a large penalty, there are non-financial rewards they experience working for the family business,” Loren Tauer, professor at […] Read more

Hanson Acres: Where is this flight heading?

When the tourist brochure arrived, it looked so innocent

Reading Time: 5 minutes You’re really sure this is a good idea?” Dale asked his wife. “Dale, I’ve had the tickets since December,” Donna said. Then her phone beeped and she looked down at the screen in her hand while she kept talking. “It’s a little late to go changing my mind now. I’d let the other women down. […] Read more


Hanson Acres: Please answer the phone!

By the morning of the third day, Dale Hanson was worried

Reading Time: 4 minutes “I don’t know why he’s not answering his phone,” Dale said to his wife Donna. “Remember the last time you got all worked up about Ed not answering the phone?” Donna said, looking up from her magazine. “He was at a fish fry in the trailer court.” The first year his father had packed up […] Read more

You want to fire Dad?

There's almost always a better solution, says our panel of experts. Try these strategies to get everyone living happily together again

Reading Time: 5 minutes It’s a movie standard. When the mob turns angry, they start wielding pitchforks. Whether it’s a monster that incites them or an invading army, when the local population goes berserk, and when they suddenly get transformed into nightmarish creatures of violence, the first thing they reach for is the nearest farm implement. It’s a scene […] Read more