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Designing a Farm Resume

File C2-13
Written April, 2004

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The competition for rental acreage is ever increasing. As the demand for renting farmable land increases, producers wanting to rent land must become salesman of their management practices and differentiate themselves from the competition. Compounding this problem is the increased distance tenants are willing to rent land away from their base establishment. It is now common for a tenant to rent land as far away as 30 miles. Selling your services becomes especially complex when wanting to crop-share rent. In this situation, the land owner is at risk and he/she wants to be sure of the tenants management skills. No longer does the land always go to the highest bidder. Now environmental factors come into play. One method of promoting and distinguishing yourself as a manager is through development of a farm resume.

A farm resume is much like a job resume in that it should highlight your qualifications as a tenant. As with a job resume, there are good and bad farm resumes. This publication was constructed to provide an outline for development of a farm resume to help tenants in being creative in “selling their services”.

Much like a prospective employee develops a resume to provide a potential employer, a potential land tenant should develop a resume to provide to a potential land lord. Also, this resume should be updated as your farming operation changes. This resume should include, but is not restricted to:

1. Biographical background. We live in a small world. By providing the landowner some background information you may find a common thread.

2. A statement of management objectives for the future. A brief statement of the ideas you have for the future and how they distinguish you from your competitors.

3. Experience. Things included here are: 1) how long you have farmed, 2) how many acres you have farmed, 3) special technologies or advanced training, and 4) licenses held.

4. Equipment. List the major types of equipment you own or lease. Make note of those pieces of equipment that improve efficiency or the environment (e.g., tracked tractors for reduced soil compaction).

5. Environmental statement. State your philosophies on the size of waterways, distance farmed from homesteads and water sources, and soil erosion. State how you have incorporated advanced technologies such as biotechnology and precision agriculture.

6. Risk management strategies. For a crop-share lease arrangement the land owner may want you to help in marketing their share of the crop. State your knowledge of crop insurance, forward pricing, and futures markets. However, do not go overboard with this issue and give the impression that you spend more time trying to mitigate marketing risks than mitigating production risks.

7. Information on insurance coverage and limits.

8. References. Have these ready upon request. Include one liners from current land owners you are renting from. Additionally, include financial institutions where you perform the majority of your business through. Make sure you have the permission of the reference before you provide their name.

All of the details outlined above should be included in developing a farm resume. As with the case of a prospective employee, many iterations of writing such a resume may be needed. Ask for this to be reviewed by current landlords and your local extension person. Additionally, ask your local extension person for help in designing a farm resume.

There are some general guidelines you should follow when developing your farm resume. These guidelines will help you to better promote your agribusiness (farm) through giving consideration to those potential leasers who may read your farm resume. General guidelines you should follow are:

1. Limit your resume to one or two pages.
2. Choose fonts that consider the age (eyesight) of landowner.
3. Do not clutter the pages, use the appropriate margins (suggested 1" margins all around) and spacing between sub-headings.

An example of farm resume follows:

Joe Farmer
100 Top Farmer Lane
Columbia, Missouri 65211
(473) 622-9999
Fax: (473) 622-9988
E-mail: jfarmer@aol.com

Education:
B.S., Agricultural Economics, University of Missouri, 1979.

Occupation:
Farm operator and part-time crop insurance adjustor

Communication:
I publish a bimonthly newsletter from April through November notifying those who I rent from of crop progress, market news, and new technologies I am incorporating into my operation.

Management Objectives:
My agriculture management objective is to achieve the highest level of revenue on a parcel of land while simultaneously minimizing soil erosion, chemical runoff, and loss of production. I am involved in continued education of the development of new technologies, and I am actively involved in adopting new technologies that improve the economic viability of agriculture production.

Experience, Advanced Training, and Organizations
Farming Background
Involved in farming 1,000 acres of crop land in Boone county for over 20 years.

  • Own 600 acres
  • Rent 400 acres
    Typical yields:
  • Corn: 125/bushel/acre (historical county yield - 100 bushel/acre)
  • Soybean: 45/bushel/acre (historical county yield - 43 bushel/acre)

Advanced Training and Licenses Held

  • Attend approximately five workshops annually sponsored by the University of Missouri Extension and farm organizations
  • Certified state of Missouri chemical applicator
  • Certified crop adjustor
  • Training in optimal waterway construction

Organizations

  • Young Farmers of America
  • Farm Bureau
  • Missouri Information Records (MIR)

Special Equipment (or list most others)

  • John Deere tracked tractor (model#)
  • No-till drill (model#)
  • John Deere Combine (model#, capacity, efficiency)

Environmental Statement
My management practices include no-till planting to reduce soil erosion and leaching. I believe in the adoption of new technologies that prove both economically and environmentally beneficial to agriculture production.

Risk Management Strategies
I am actively involved in a University of Missouri extension marketing club which allows me to hone my marketing skills. I subscribe to DTN AgDayta which allows for up-to-date price quotes and marketing recommendations.

Insurance Coverage
Missouri Farm Bureau. Contact Irene Insurer at 220 W. 70th, Columbia, Missouri 65203, (Phone Number) for further information.

References
Available Upon Request (see below)
(Have these with you in case the landowner requests these while talking to him/her)

- Separate Page-

References

Larry Landowner
1111 Side Hill
Fayette, Missouri 65299
Phone Number

Albert Ag Lender
Central Agricultural Bank
Main Street
Midway, Missouri 6999
Phone Number

 

Joe Parcell, extension economist, University of Missouri