The right mix of people
Good farmers need good teams.
It is important to recognise that individuals have different needs, capabilities and personalities and to treat each person according to their needs.
People who make an effort to understand personality and working style differences will have more effective communication, satisfaction and success
There are also many different tools available for understanding personality and working styles. Useful personality tools can be found in books and by searching the internet.
The DiSC profile is a non-judgemental tool used for discussion of people’s behavioural differences. If you participate in a DiSC program, you’ll be asked to complete a series of questions that produce a detailed report about your personality and behaviour. You’ll also receive tips related to working with people of other styles.
There are many online DiSC profiling tools which can be fun to have a go at. Try it with your team – while they tend to be general in nature they can highlight different preferences that you and your team have.
Sometimes this provides a point for discussion about underlying issues that can be positive and constructive.One that we have tried is the 123 DISC Personality Test*.
(*Please note, Dairy Australia in no way endorses any particular product. We only point to DiSC profiling as an approach that you may consider for yourself or to use with your team.)
Tools are a guide only
The most important thing to remember when using these tools is that nobody fits completely into one box. They are a guide only and in reality all people use a combination of all styles depending on the circumstances. However, people usually tend more towards one style than the others.
All styles can suit dairy farming
All personalities and working styles can add value to a farming business. There is no personality or style that is most suited to dairy farming.
The Roles and Responsibilites tab in the People Analysis tool can be used to review the roles people have in the daily farm operations on a dairy farm. and to determine who is responsible for each of these areas.
This example shows how this tool can be used to look at the roles and responsibilities on a dairy farm.
The farm duties are separated into six major categories: milk harvesting; animal husbandry and young stock; feed management and delivery; pasture production and cropping; plant equipment and infrastructure maintenance; and administration.
It is a useful tool when conducting performance appraisals where there may be an opportunity to review and reallocate roles and responsibilities. Within each of these areas, there will be segregation of tasks. These can be defined in the position description for each person.