Exploring expansion means answering the following questions:
Do we want to expand (vision)?
How do we want to expand (new market channels)?
Is this a good idea (testing the ideas)?
The first step is to make sure your vision for the farm business is clear. Then as you develop plans to change you can check back to make sure the new ideas are in line with the overall vision. Here are some resources to clarify, confirm, or revise your vision; you can use some or all of them, but the final goals and vision statement will be further explored and developed later in the course. A vision is a short (one or two sentence) statement of your core principles and long-term goals.
Vision Part 1
A Couple of Exercises
Vision Part 2
The second part of knowing your vision is to recognize your preferences.
Vision Part 3
The third part of visioning is to identify your key goals. These are more specific than the vision, but they may also overlap, and should not contradict, the vision.
Vision Part 4
Putting it all together
This worksheet brings the visioning together. Do your key goals match your preferences? Do they reflect your vision?
How do decisions get made as the business changes? All businesses need to clarify the decision-making structure, particularly when significant change is under consideration. Changing what you do can mean some tough choices. For your team to function well and smoothly, everyone needs to know their part in making decisions, and how decisions are made. Each team member may have veto power or voting power in some decisions, and might only be responsible to give input or information in others. Even if everyone is involved in all decisions now, will that work if you expand? Are you following general rules of consensus which allows people to disagree without blocking an initiative, or do some people have a stronger say than others? The worksheet above will help clarify these questions.