Thursday, 16 May 2024 07:55

Building leadership

Written by  Staff Reporters
Craigmore Sustainables general manager farming, Stuart Taylor. Craigmore Sustainables general manager farming, Stuart Taylor.

Craigmore Sustainables says it is committed to investing in professional and career development for its farm managers and employees.

Working with people such as Chris Parsens, Ellen Ford and Jon Lasenby the company runs a high-performance teams programme, which general manager farming, Stuart Taylor says delivers transformational results for the company's leaders. Long term, Craigmore hopes to transfer the process over to primary industries.

"We challenge our leaders to be self-aware and lead our people for a positive future for our business and their personal lives. People are one of the most important parts of a farming business and we're committed to developing farm teams that succeed and love what they do."

When setting a farm system, Taylor says he looks at thte farmer's natural style and the farm's characteristics, including geography, climate and assets. The farm system is modelled to create success for the farmer and success for the farm.

"Every farmer is different. To attract the best people we have created flexibility around how we run our farms and how we employ people. We talk about what they want out of life, their career aspirations and risk profile, and remunerate people with situations that create win/win outcomes for the people and the business."

Employment options include managers and contract milkers with or without equity, 50/50 sharemilkers and, in one case, a joint venture lease.

"We want to attract the best people and remunerate them in a way that helps them meet their career and life goals," Taylor says.

"Also, we introduce innovation onto farm by looking for 'passion-projects' - once a farmer is succeeding on the farm (great teams, cows, farm presentation and financials), we work closely with them to introduce an innovation-based around their passion. An innovation might enhance animal welfare and performance, the environment, people or farm system performance."

Craigmore was founded in 2009 by New Zealanders Forbes Elworthy and Mark Cox, who believed the dairy sector was highly innovative but needed capital to invest in the trial and testing of technology to fast-track change in the sector.

"We have a strong focus on delivering a positive future for New Zealand's primary sector and our rural communities," Taylor says.

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