Succession planning on farms can lead to business growth

That was the theme of the Central Association of Agricultural Valuers’ annual conference and general meeting on 27 June where Matt Lobley was a key speaker.

Matt explained the ‘succession effect’ to attendees – the concept that expectation of succession led to changes in the way farms operated because those in control aimed to make sure they had a large business which was attractive to their successors.  Early preparations for succession provided impetus for business development as people became more expansive or progressive in their thoughts. 

Similarly the ‘successor effect’ also made an impact on businesses.  However, Matt emphasised the need to allow younger generations real decision-making duties on-farm.  His studies suggest that 24 per cent of UK successors aged over 21 had little or no delegated decision making responsibility.

He went on to say that a balance is needed between allowing the older generations a dignified exit from full-time work and persuading them there is more to life than farming whilst allowing the younger successors to start to take part in decision making at an early age.

Also speaking at the Conference, Sian Bushell of Sian Bushell Associates spoke about the need to grow businesses to the size of the family and also to start thinking about succession at an early age.

The conference was held near Grantham and 350 people attended.

 

9 July 2014

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