Navigating the Agriculture Industry: The Power of Mentorship, Networking, and Agricultural Consultants

by Pete Weisenberger, President
American Society of Agricultural Consultants (ASAC)

The agriculture industry is a complex and dynamic industry, and navigating it successfully requires knowledge, skill, and a supportive network. In this blog post, we’ll explore three key elements of success in the agriculture industry: mentorship, networking, and the role of independent agricultural consulting professionals. No one can be expected to know everything about everything. Independent sources of knowledge and insights can be the factor that helps propel a farm business to high levels of success and long-term profitability.

There is a cost added to the expense ledger in hiring independent consultants. Hiring people for specific and particular tasks, however, can be more cost-effective than having the expense of full-time labor whose time may not be fully utilized. Many job responsibilities can be “farmed out” on a task-by-task basis, allowing the owner/manager to actually be a manager of people. The larger the scale, scope, and size of a farm business, the more the need to manage people assigned to various tasks versus trying to complete all the tasks themselves.

Of course, at the base of all relationships are integrity and trust. Without either of these attributes well-formed and practiced, all else fails.

Mentorship can be a powerful tool for new and aspiring farmers, providing guidance and support as they navigate the complex world of agriculture. A mentor can provide valuable insights into everything from business administration to operating procedures.

One common utilization of an independent consultant as a mentor is for commodity marketing strategies. Many other business functions can benefit from the utilization of independent consultants. A critical need for many producers, no matter their years and experience in production, is basic financial management.

Mentoring producers on sound business administration functions can help them build a foundation of solid business analysis. Particularly for young and beginning producers, this aspect of management is crucial. Building this strong foundation will help to ensure family business success for generations.

Networking is another important aspect of the agriculture industry, allowing farmers to connect with other professionals and organizations in their field. Peer Group Networking (amongst producers, consultants, vendors, educational resources, and other stakeholders) can provide access to valuable opportunities. By connecting with relevant networks, farmers can improve their chances of success in the agriculture industry.

Independent agricultural consultants can play a critical role in facilitating mentorship and networking connections in the agricultural industry. They can provide guidance and support to new and aspiring farmers, connecting them with experienced mentors and relevant networks. In addition, agricultural consultants can help to identify opportunities for collaboration and partnership among farmers, helping to build a stronger and more resilient agricultural industry.

As President of the American Society of Agricultural Consultants (ASAC), I understand the challenges faced by new and aspiring farmers in the agriculture industry. Throughout my career as a farm lender and in other roles, I have been fortunate to have had mentors who have helped me navigate the industry, and I believe in the power of mentorship and networking to help others succeed.

By building strong mentorship and networking connections and seeking the guidance of independent agricultural consultants, young and beginning farmers can improve their chances of success in the agriculture industry, contributing to the growth and sustainability of the sector.

In conclusion, mentorship, networking, and the guidance of independent agricultural consultants are essential components of success. As a seasoned agricultural consultant and President of ASAC, I especially encourage new and aspiring farmers to seek out mentorship and networking opportunities. And, I encourage farmers of all ages to consider working with independent agricultural consultants to help them achieve their goals.

For more information on ASAC or to join the Society, visit our website at

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