Mel Hermanson at Ranching for Profit

On the 14th of January my Husband Russell and I drove down to Billings, Montana to attend the Ranching for Profit course. This course was in line with the mentorship objectives I set with my mentor Graeme Finn. We decided that it would be beneficial if both Russell and I went down so we could align our goals and objectives for our cattle operation. We were able to utilize growing forward 2 funding through the Business Management Skills development program to help attend the course and I was also able to utilize a portion of my CYL mentorship budget which was a massive help.

The course started on Sunday the 15th of January and was run by Dallas Mount and Dave Pratt. Right away Russell and I were separated and put on a table of people we hadn’t met before. The logic that being separated we would be exposed to more ideas and take in different things which we could collaborate at the end of each night, share our own findings and have healthy, structural (but sometimes argumentative) discussions. The course was very intense and including doing homework every night in preparation for the next day of class. So if you think there might be some time for a little bit of sightseeing in the evenings like I thought, you would be wrong but it’s worth every penny.

The ranching for profit school is a business school for the livestock industry. Russell and I went down to the school with an open mind, we liked what we saw on the course outline and we are at a stage of our business where we wanted to move forward on the right foot. The course doesn’t give you a step by step plan to make a profit, it gives you the tools in your rancher’s toolbox for you to be able to make better (profitable) decisions for your business. I have a bachelor’s degree in Agribusiness, so I thought I would take more away from the grazing side of the course than the economics and finance side. I was completely wrong, I learned more tools to apply to my business during in those 6 days than I did during my years of university.
I can honestly say the course was a life changing experience for me. Russell and I went into the course with paradigms that we had unconsciously set for ourselves and our business and we walked away really challenging these paradigms. And we didn’t just challenge the paradigms, but we could also see solutions that we haven’t been able to see before and a way to move forward to be more sustainable, and that really excited us. There is a lot of great information available in our industry however, it can be difficult to put it all together and that’s where this course really helps you join the dots. Russell and I had so many “Wow”, “light bulb” or “A-Ha” moments during this course it was incredible. We each walked away with a list of action items that we wanted to pursue and feeling really excited about our future in the beef industry.
Thank you to CYL, GF2 and Chinook Financial for giving me the support and opportunity to attend this life changing course.

Mel Hermanson

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