RicelandMeadows


I Made It!
May 17, 2018, 10:13 pm
Filed under: May 2018 | Tags: , , , , ,

retirecake

May 17, 2018

After 27 years working an off farm job, I have made it to retirement! I can now spend my time working draft horses and this farm. Of course, I will now have more time for family and friends, as well as, other passions of mine. All those years of swing shift and missing out on things are over…it was worth it!

Three years after I hired in, I took a job in salary. I had a few people give me great advice, but I took the job anyway. You see, I thought that I could make a difference. After all those years and countless ups and downs, I was reflecting upon my career and thought that I hadn’t made much of a difference at all…that was until these last few days.

People at work sought me out to say good-bye. I shook hands with lots of folks, shared a hug or two as well. I got to have some one-on-one time with several guys and each time, I felt humbled. The comments made me choke up at times. Guys thanked me for my leadership, my candor, my honesty and for keeping them safe. It was a team effort people, we did those things together. I thank every one of you from the bottom of my heart for your help, your kindness and the respect that you showed me over these past years.

I thank you for the laughs, the memories and even those moments that made me grow! I missed some of you due to our crazy schedules, but fear not, I wish you all well and I know that you too send good feelings my way.

It is still a big place with lots of opportunities, but  this afternoon, as I walked out the gate for the last time…I realized that I had indeed made a difference…thanks to all of you!

 



Because I Said So…
May 2, 2017, 10:09 pm
Filed under: May 2017 | Tags: , , , , , ,

abbybridal

May 2, 2017

Those four words still make my hackles stand up! I absolutely hate to hear those words. As a strong willed child, I did hear those words from my mother, quite often. I would try to reason with her, but once she said, “because I said so.”, that was it. There would be no more conversation of any kind. Unless of course I wanted to bring the house down upon myself!

As a parent, years later, I tried not to say those words. I realized that shutting down conversation is never good. I tried to listen to my children’s point of view. I didn’t reason with them very often, but I did try to take the time to explain my decision. If their persistence continued, then I would resort to “the look”. That “look” would also end conversation once I had gotten exasperated.

The difference between my mother’s approach and mine, was that I would revisit the conversation again once we were in neutral territory. I don’t mean to imply that I am a saint. I just wanted to give the other person, even if it was a child, the opportunity to share their opinion. I have been swayed by other’s logic and experiences more than once, by cooling off and listening….even the logic of a child.

Training children, is good experience for training young horses. The young horse has spirit, feelings and heart. They learn by repetition. I also think that kindness goes a long way. Make no mistake, I am in charge and we will do it my way, but I will allow a certain amount of playfulness. I want to train the youngster, not break its spirit. I will sometimes move to neutral territory to continue a lesson. I will look to see if something is out of order, like a sore spot or annoying harness part causing the distraction. I will check for flies, strange objects in view or new noises. I will not force my will at all costs.

I say again, I am the boss. We will do it my way, but I want to lead in such a way as to make the youngster want to please me. When they think its their idea that helps a lot. When they come to know that it is “our” idea, that is where teamwork begins. I could force my will. I could beat or threaten to beat my ideas into them…but that would only serve to make them hate me and it would only make me tired….that would be total failure!

Today’s “take away” is to lead by example. Take time to listen. Look for clues in other’s logic and experiences. Remember, there is more than one way to reach an objective. By softening your stance, you can still be in charge. You will foster teamwork, team building, respect and perhaps even love. So…lighten up! …. because I said so….