Family Fence Posts
Talking to Each Other

PROGRAM OBJECTIVE: Farm family members must be motivated to adopt effective communication strategies when farming together to build better understanding and eliminate potential family conflicts. Simple misunderstandings as well as the stress of farming can prevent family members (or even a farm marriage) from effectively communicating and working together in a multi-generation family farming operation.   Establishing effective channels of communication can create a dynamic change in the personal relationships between farm family members as well as be an extremely powerful tool in achieving stronger family bonds especially during stressful times in agriculture.

Juggling the current working demands of the farm along with family obligations can become quite a challenge to anyone. One gets so wrapped up in their own individual problems that they fail to communicate effectively with others. Everyone is talking; but no one might be listening. This breakdown in family communications can quickly lead to misunderstandings as well as cause potential conflicts between farm family members. Never underestimate the importance of family communications in order to achieve a more positive impact in family working relationships on the farm. Striving toward building family harmony while avoiding potential conflict is one of the real secrets for success in a farming operation that is committed to open and effective communications between family members. Helping farm families to build stronger family relationships through better lines of communication is the goal of this presentation.

SUMMARY POINT:   It is important to remember that a successful multi-generation family farming operation requires family members to communicate openly and honestly with each other. Family members must share their expectations and personal goals with others to help avoid misunderstandings as well as resolving any potential conflicts. This strategy builds trust and mutual respect between family members so that their farming operation has the opportunity to prosper for the next generation and to insure their family farming legacy continues with success.  Learning to communicate effectively in a multi-generation family farming operation must be established as a priority by family members to achieve this success.

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