Understanding personalities and communications styles can make all the difference in farm transitions! Here are some questions to help you navigate this tricky area.
1. Think of an elder you are working with on farm transition: What is the most effective way to approach this elder about a difficult decision? For example, is it better to approach him/her while working together in the barn or at a sit-down in the farm office? Does the process go better if you provide a lot of background explanation to warm up to the problem, or is cutting to the chase a more effective way to capture his/her attention? Does he/her prefer spelled out options or is he better with brainstorming?
2. Is there another elder you are working with on farm transition? What is the best way to communicate with that elder?
3. How do your elders make joint decisions? How do their styles work or not work well together? What happens if you approach one versus the other?
4. How do you resemble your elders with respect to communication style?
5. How and how well do you communicate with your siblings, and they with each other? Who are your allies in the farm succession planning process? Are there sides? Are there unspoken feelings and opinions about the farm and its future? Can you get them sorted out or at least put on the table?
For more resources, visit our Farm Transitions Portal.