When you work a desk job, it’s easy to zone in on the “practical” parts of the job; responding to emails, fulfilling your office duties, pleasing clients, and staying on top of a to-do list. Even in the world of agricultural marketing and communications, it takes a careful balancing act to remember the people at the base of the industry that make all of this happen. Without farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural producers, there would be no agribusiness. There would be no commodity groups, membership organizations, or companies to represent. One of the aspects of my internship here at AdFarm that I have been most impressed with, is the intense effort to keep the ag in the agricultural communications.
In my fairly narrow experience, I’ve noticed that in many cases, corporate ag comm agencies walk a fine line between losing touch with ag and maintaining their productivity. AdFarm’s dedication to stay in touch with the producers of North America helps create a deep understanding for agriculture. AdFarmers aren’t just suit-wearing ad execs; many of them are farmkids looking for a way to help the industry that raised them (myself included).
In the time since I’ve started this internship with AdFarm, I’ve visited several agricultural operations. Most of the time spent there was during regular working hours. It wasn’t because I requested time off, but because of the natural tendency for AdFarm to keep its people connected. To AdFarm, keeping me immersed in agriculture is a natural step to giving me the full company experience.
I’ve also had the pleasure of interacting with farmers and ranchers via conferences and training sessions. My first ever business-related trip, I was surrounded by incredible farmers, ranchers, and AdFarmers. It was a fantastic experience.
I’m lucky. All of these experiences with agriculture, both from behind my desk and on the farm, are directly playing a role in the development of my career. I feel that these opportunities have shaped me into a more passionate, well-rounded, and ag-savvy member of the community. And the thing that amazes me most about this is that it’s a company-wide culture.
There’s something special about the connections established through deliberate relationship building. My experiences on the farms have made me a better advocate and communicator for the agriculture industry. So my question is, how will you stay connected to the people you serve?
Kelly Rivard, is country girl, agriculture advocate, passionate communicator, Gen-Y’er well-versed in social media and AdFarm intern. She can be found @kmrivard on Twitter or at firstname.lastname@example.org