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Tips for succession planning

Succession planning can be a sensitive, yet necessary step

By Diego Flammini, Farms.com

There are certain things in life that people don’t like to think about because it makes them uncomfortable.

But on a more serious note, when it comes to family-run farming operations, succession planning can be uncomfortable, but it’s a necessary step.

People can’t run the farms forever and having a plan in place on how to move forward once the time comes can make things a little easier during the transition periods.

“Succession planning is that time when you need to be involving other people,” John Mill, a financial advisor with the Canadian Association of Farm Advisors said during his presentation to a room of farmers and family members during the Chatham-Kent Farm Show in January.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) has a succession planning checklist that includes opening lines of communication, defining goals based on personal, business and other objectives and identifying the successor.

The University of Tennessee also published a workbook filled with tips on steps to take when succession planning is on the horizon.

Communication is an integral part of succession planning. Having everyone on the same page, knowing the next steps and whether they want to be a part of the farm operation or not is way to make the transition periods a little easier.

Join the conversation and share your experiences with succession planning and any tips for other farmers and their families.


Having open communication about a succession plan is important


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