Farm Managers. Farming is a complex and challenging business that requires a variety of skills and knowledge. A farm manager plays a critical role in the success of a farm, ensuring that it operates efficiently and profitably. In this blog post, we will discuss the importance of farm managers, the types of farm managers, and the qualifications required to become a farm manager.
Importance of Farm Managers
Farm managers are responsible for overseeing all aspects of farm operations, from planting and harvesting crops to managing livestock and handling finances. They must have a thorough understanding of agricultural practices, as well as business management skills. Without a skilled farm manager, a farm may struggle to remain profitable and sustainable in the long term.
One of the key roles of a farm manager is to make decisions that maximize productivity and profitability. They must be able to analyze market trends and weather patterns to determine the most profitable crops to grow and the best time to harvest them. They also need to ensure that the farm’s resources, including soil, water, and equipment, are being used efficiently.
In addition to managing day-to-day operations, farm managers must also develop long-term strategies to ensure the farm’s sustainability. They need to stay up-to-date with new farming technologies and techniques, and be able to adapt to changes in the market or weather patterns.
Types of Farm Managers
There are several different types of farm managers, each with their own specific responsibilities. Some of the most common types of farm managers include:
- Crop Managers – responsible for overseeing the planting, cultivation, and harvesting of crops.
- Livestock Managers – responsible for managing the breeding, feeding, and care of livestock.
- Dairy Managers – responsible for overseeing the production of dairy products, including milk and cheese.
- Orchard Managers – responsible for managing the planting, maintenance, and harvesting of fruit trees.
- Ranch Managers – responsible for managing the care and breeding of livestock on a ranch.
Qualifications of a Farm Manager
To become a farm manager, you typically need a combination of education and experience in agriculture and business management. A degree in agriculture or a related field, such as agronomy, animal science, or agricultural engineering, is often required. In addition, many farm managers have experience working on a farm or ranch, which can be gained through internships, apprenticeships, or entry-level positions.
Farm managers also need a range of skills and qualities to be successful. These include:
- Strong communication skills – to effectively communicate with staff, vendors, and customers.
- Business acumen – to manage finances, marketing, and other business operations.
- Leadership skills – to manage and motivate a team of workers.
- Technical skills – to operate and maintain farm equipment.
- Analytical skills – to evaluate market trends and weather patterns and make informed decisions.
In conclusion, farm managers play a crucial role in the success of a farm. They are responsible for overseeing all aspects of farm operations, from planting and harvesting crops to managing livestock and finances. To become a farm manager, you need a combination of education and experience in agriculture and business management, as well as a range of skills and qualities, including strong communication, business acumen, leadership, technical, and analytical skills.
MANAGEMENT OR ENTREPRENEUR IN AGRICULTURE
Management refers to the person or group of persons who coordinate, organize and control the use of other factors of production.
In other words, the person(s) who combine other factors of production (land, labour, and capital) to produce goods and services is called the entrepreneur or management.
Management determines when to produce, what to produce, type of production, supervises work, recruits workers, and determines what to sell in order to make profit. The profitability of the farm depends on the management.
FEATURES OR CHARACTERISTICS OF MANAGEMENT
(i) It involves the management skills of an individual or group of person
(ii) Management influence the organization of other production factors
(iii) It coordinates and controls other factors of production
(iv) It is involved decision making
(v) It determines the level of pay or wages
(vi) Management reward is profit
(vii) The quality of management influences the output
(viii) The cost of management is determined by its quality
In agriculture, the farm manager is usually regarded as the entrepreneur whose duties include the organization, administration, production and marketing of produce from the farm. The reward for management is profit.
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
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FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
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FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
PROBLEMS OF THE FARM MANAGERS
Thousands of men and women are ambitious with the desire to own a farm of their own and thereon build a home and a profitable business. In the days of homesteading and cheap land this desire could be realized with very little capital provided one wished to cope with the hardships and difficulties of frontier life. At present practically all the available government land has been homesteaded, the frontier has disappeared and practically all the available agricultural land is held in private ownership and is increasing in value from the most remote areas of production or, from the least productive land to the centers of population and the most highly productive land associated with the best social advantages.
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
A normal increase in land values should not alarm the prospective land owner because such increase is normally based on the added improvements to the farm and upon the public and private expenditures for transportation, for telephones, for schools, for churches, and for
such other private and public improvements and utilities as will make it possible to maintain a reasonable return per dollar invested coupled
with increasingly better social conditions.
The increased land values however have created at least one outstanding problem for the one who intends to become a farm owner and that is the necessity of accumulating a sufficient amount of capital to meet the required initial payment on the land and to provide the necessary working capital for the operation of the farm. In negotiating a land deal it has been quite customary between the seller and the buyer to come to certain so called terms with regard to the amount ofthe first payment and subsequent payments and interest rates on the indebtedness with the usual result that the buyer sinks from 80 percent to 90 percent of his capital in the land and leaves from 10 percent to 20 percent for working capital and improvements and is consequently handicapped in the operation of his farm and must trust to luck in making his subsequent payments, which amounts are stipulated in the contract with the provision that if not paid such contract shall be null and void, time being the essence of the agreement, etc.
JOURNAL OF FARM ECONOMICS
This is a good beginning of a nightmare, for the buyer, which may last for several years or may end abruptly as the case may be, and to make the realization of this nightmare as vivid as possible, the stipulated annual payments are often much larger than the farm can
reasonably be expected to return above the family cost of living, interest on the investment, and the cost of operation*
This condition offers a field for study in farm economics which should lead to certain standardization for farm finance applicable to the different agricultural regions of the United States. This leads up to the problem which the M. Sigbert Awes Company, in its business of land settlement in North Dakota, is attempting to solve and which has created for the company problems in farm economics and farm
importance of farm managers
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS. This company sells its land under what is known as a Crop Stock and Insurance Contract. Under this contract the buyer makes a small initial payment of about 20 percent of the purchase price of the farm and he is allowed ten years in which to complete the remaining payments by each year turning over to the company one half of the proceeds from the sale of crops and livestock and livestock products which is applied, first, in payment of the interest, and, second, in reduction of the principal until paid.
The insurance feature provides that the buyer must insure his life to the company as beneficiary during the period of the contract for an amount equal to his indebtedness, which means that in the event of death the debts on the farm will be satisfied in full and the family will inherit the farm clear, of all incumbrances. The success of a project of this kind from a business standpoint depends entirely on whether the farmers who have bought land under this contract will make good and the more rapidly they. will make good the greater the success of the business.
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS. We therefore recognize that this business venture aside from its economic aspects is a problem in farm management and that the success of it is very largely contingent upon a knowledge and administration of sound principles of farm management applied to every farm from the time that the new owner takes possession until the farm is paid for, and it is therefore essential and important that the new owner receive the proper advice with regard to the best methods of farming and farm management and that proper direction be given in the organization of each farm into an efficient business unit as rapidly as is consistent with the various conditions that may affect every individual farm. In this connection it should be said that the FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS question of the proper organization of the farm does not depend on the means of the new owner. The company keeps enough capital in reserve to provide the necessary working capital to begin with and to put in the necessary improvements to adequately shelter the livestock. This of course is added to the buyer’s indebtedness subject to the terms of the contract as stated heretofore, or if he is able,to make a fairly large initial payment on the farm, arrangement is made with him so that enough of this payment is reserved to provide him with the necessary working capital. This, then, does not leave any handicap to the immediate procedure with such a program as may seem the most profitable to pursue in the proper organization of every farm
and naturally brings into prominence a number of problems in farm management.
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
major problems in farm management
have presented them-
selves as follows :
- The Selection of the Farm.
- The Distribution of the Investment.
- The Farm Layout.
- The Selection of Enterprises.
- The Distribution and the Adjustment of Enterprises.
- The Labor Schedule.
The importance of Selection of the Farm
FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS
Under this scheme of land settlement as well as for the individual farmer, the selection of the land is very important, for the inherent
productivity of every farm bears a direct relation to the success and expansion of the business, so when selecting a farm careful consideration is given to the following factors :
- The soil, its type, fertility condition, drainage condition.
- Amount of waste land which cannot be reclaimed.
- Distance from market.
- Distance from school and church.
- Condition of roads and distance from state and national highways.
- Condition of improvements.
- Condition of water supply.
- Amount of land which can be used for permanent pasture.
- Approximate amount of capital required for the investment in
working capital and improvements to affect a proper organization of such a type of farming as would be best adapted to the farm.
Sometimes the price asked for the farm is such as to prohibit the FARM MANAGERS EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS addition of more capital for improvements and proper equipment without over-capitalizing the business. The selection of the farm is a primary and determining step in
farm management for the prospective farmer or for the one who wishes to change location. This phase of farm management therefore must be highly emphasized and the problem analyzed in detail into its various factors so that the value of a given farm can be pretty well established and the type of farm organization best adapted to it can be determined.
The Distribution of farm Investment.
In farm organization the proper distribution of the capital is fundamental and the solution of this problem naturally follows the question of the selection of the farm. In this respect the farmer as well as the manufacturer is dealing with the three fundamental factors of production, namely, land, labor, and capital and it is the proper adjustment of these factors that is sought in an ideal distribution of the factors of production. The adjustment of the factors of production in a farm business however is affected by various conditions which change from time to time’ so that a mathematically accurate distribution of the investment is probably impossible to obtain, and if obtained it would not remain so very long because of the changes in land values, in labor costs, and in the cost of equipment that are continually taking place. The efficient farm manager, however, will see. that the distribution of the investment is correct within certain reasonable limits and he will also make adjustments in accordance with changing economic conditions.
The factors of production of any farm business
may be analyzed as follows:
The Factors of Production.
- Man Labor.
- Horse Labor.
- Fixed Capital.
c. Wells and Water Works:
d. Tile Drains.
e. Irrigation Ditches.
problems of the farm managers
- Working Capital.
a. Work Horses.
b. Farm Implements and Machinery.
c. Productive Livestock.
d. Feeds, and Seeds.
In studying farm organization in North Dakota it appears that its most outstanding weakness is that the land represents too large a percentage of the total investment. This is apparently due, first, to the fact that among the earlier investors in farms there the tendency was to buy large tracts of land presumably due to its cheapness. Second, that the majority of North Dakota farmer immigrants have later and up to the present time come to the state with grain farming predominantly in mind and have invested nearly all of their available cash and credit in land and many of them have consequently been handicapped for the want of working capital. When lands were cheap the investment in large tracts did not necessarily mean at that time that the distribution of the capital was much out of proportion. However, the proper adjustment in the organization of the farm business that should have conformed with the changing economic conditions have failed to take place and this is probably the greatest weakness to-day in North Dakota’s scheme of farm management.
Farmers, whether they are operating small or large businesses, must consider themselves in the role of managers, and their success will depend upon how well they can combine their land, their labor and their equipment into an efficient productive unit. This leads to a number of questions and problems. Just what extent of labor and tillage of soil will bring the highest efficiency ? Just what is the proper proportion of machinery, work horses, productive livestock, improvements, labor and land to combine to secure the greatest efficiency? And if these factors are adjusted at one time they must be readjusted to conform to new economic conditions. If labor costs rise, it pays to add more machinery and to plan the whole system of management so as to use the labor as efficiently as possible. This may also make it profitable to reduce the cropping area and increase the number of livestock units and thereby increase the practice of pasturing off crops.
Livestock and the quality of livestock and its relation to the most efficient organization of the farm business is fundamental. In the farming of virgin and practically new land in North Dakota livestock has occupied no place of importance as an enterprise but as the
JOURNAL OF FARM ECONOMICS.
process of farming goes on the manager begins to see the necessity of
summer tillage to clean the land and the raising of grass and legume
crops to restore the humus and in so doing he resorts to the raising of
corn and grasses, and in order to create a market for those crops he
resorts to livestock. This leads to the following premises :
•I. If practice is to form a basis for conclusions, the value of live-
stock as an enterprise in connection with tillage and farming of new
lands is doubtful.
- When the cultivation of the soil has reached a point where the
presence of weeds and the reduction of humus and fertility necessi-
tate summer tillage and the production of grasses and legume crops
and the addition of manure, enough livestock should be secured to
consume the roughage so raised and further to utilize the straw and
other refuse so that the manure resulting from the same can be re-
turned to the land. This is the first step in the efficient utilization of
the labor, land and crops. At this stage of the business the quality
of the livestock and the investment which it represents should be in
accordance with the quality of the feeds raised and the value of the
- economic tools for nation building
- factors affecting the expansion of industries
- mineral resources and the mining industries
16. CROP ROTATION