FREEDOM FARMER BLOG

Be Proactive - You Only Have 20-30 Seasons as a Farm Owner

business success entrepreneurship failure rate farm business financial modeling profit optimisation strategic bets Apr 11, 2024

Here is a great post from our CEO, Sam Johnsson. 
 
One of the secrets of world-leading entrepreneurs is they know that to succeed faster in business, they need to increase their rate of failure. 
 
The leading entrepreneurs make strategic bets about the future, quickly test whether the idea is working, keep the ones that succeed and learn and move on from the many that don’t. 
 
For the corner store, the accountant, the local plumber or the online business, this is all well and good - they can find out whether something is working in a few weeks or a couple of months. This allows them to run many tests and fail (move closer to what works, aka succeed) multiple times per year. 
 
Contrast this to farm businesses that generally operate on an annual cycle where many of the strategic bets that are made may take 9-12 months to find out whether they are a success. Compared to other businesses, the farm owner must wait until the end of the season to find out if their strategic bets have worked or have failed (aka providing learning to move towards success). 
 
This means that the farm owner’s rate of failure (aka success) is 12-50 times slower than businesses that can fail (aka succeed) on a monthly or weekly cycle. 
 
Waiting for the end of the season to determine if your strategic bets are working could be costing you a fortune in missed opportunities. And we might only have 20-30 seasons in total where we are in control of the farm. 
 
The good news is that there is a way to accelerate the rate of failure (aka success) in your farm business. 
 
However, you don’t need to wait until the end of the season to see how the business performed… 
 
The top farm business owners understand that developing a financial model of their business and creating what we call a Business Model Forecast (or BMF) for the upcoming season. Then, calculating the KPIs & benchmarks based on the forecast allows them to test multiple strategic bets BEFORE the year has even started. 
 
If they aren’t happy with the outcome, they can investigate what changes they could make, update their BMF and calculate the KPIs & Benchmarks again and again and again until they are confident their chosen farm business model will take them towards their goals. 
 
They can even test different production & price scenarios in their forecast to see if they are happy with the results before committing all the time, energy & money into a season with a plan they are not confident will succeed. 
 
So, to succeed faster and profit more in your farm business, investing time in the office and developing and stress testing your business model allows you to massively increase the speed at which you fail (aka succeed). This will help you land on the winning business model for your farm…. before you run out of seasons. 
 
Every farm business owner can learn how to do BMF well for their business. To accelerate, surround yourself with successful farm businesses whose models you can copy (in school it was called cheating - in business it’s called market research). 
 
Have a great week! 
 
Sam Johnsson 
CEO - Farm Owners Academy 
 
PS - We are passionate about supporting farm owners to improve the profitability of their farm business so we have created a training that teaches you how to do this. It is called the Cash Flow Optimiser for Farm Owners. Instead of paying $197, it’s on sale for a short time for $9. Click here to access This is a great program to help you create a winning business model for your farm. 
 
PPS – Our two-day Top Producers Program is taking place on the Sunshine Coast in June this year. You can attend in person or register online. Click here to learn more.

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