- 1. Train assistants
AS a farmer, there will be times when other duties will conflict with your farming activities. Train someone to do the farm duties when you face a major time conflict. It could be a neighbour, a member of your family, who lives with you, or a friend. People who are retired can act as potential part-time assistants.
2. Build network of experts
Create a network of experts in key areas like pest and disease management, finance, marketing, security and transport.
3. Know market price
Build information networks on markets. You need several sources of information to know whether the price you are being offered is reasonable given the market situation.
Useful links include the driver who transports the produce, wholesalers, market reports in the media and other farmers.
4. Work with neighbours
Share resources with neighbours. It might make more economic sense setting up a communal water dam, borehole or spray dip, shared by several farmers in the area than going it alone.
It also makes economic sense jointly hiring a veterinary doctor to treat all the animals in the area or contract someone to spray weeds, do artificial insemination, shearing and hay making.
5 .Use modern technology
Make use of modern communications technology like the Internet, mobile phones, facsimile machines and scanners to simplify your work
6. Learn to delegate
Do not do things that others can do nearly as well as you, as their input frees you to do other more important tasks.
7. Work as support labour
Offer to work as support labour as a way of learning â€” it is often quicker and cheaper than learning by trial and error.
8. Know when to do what
- Schedule heavy lifting sessions when you know the family will be, around e.g, wood gathering, major tree planting and fencing. Schedule potentially dangerous tasks when other members of the family are in the vicinity. Also let them know the issues, so that they can come looking for you if you do not report in on time.
9. Help neighbours, friends
Such acts place you in good stead when you need help. Look for common timing of tasks with neighbours to get the best results â€” if a certain provider is in the area, try and get a better deal by doing two farms at once.
Treat for weeds and vermin at the same time as neighbours A better kill will result, plus time potentially saved in purchasing and storing poisons, baits, etc. A friendly morning tea can be a useful time to plan or explore potential joint activities with neighbours and friends.
10. Do some research
Read and file useful books and magazines on aspects of farming.