Feed Bites

How to Harness the Love of the Feed Industry to Attract Employees

Written by: Guest   |   April 13, 2023

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By: Kristin Ireland, People Spark Consulting

Hello, there!

I’m Kristen Ireland, one of the founders, along with Erin Mies, of People Spark Consulting, and in this blog I’ll share two strategies for hiring great people who will stick with you, season after season.

When we met as human resource experts at a large agriculture cooperative, we quickly realized that we shared a pretty straightforward philosophy:

We believe that simple, practical HR processes can boost a company’s bottom line and increase profits and margins.

We founded People Spark so that we could share our knowledge and business strategies with ag and feed companies across the U.S.

Although neither Erin or I come from a farming or feed background, after more than 20 combined years of working in this industry, we know full-well how special this industry is. I quickly learned the priority wasn’t on fancy degrees and impressive work titles, but rather, people in agriculture care about building genuine, meaningful relationships. Practically everyone I crossed paths with said something along the lines of, “Tell me about your family. Your hometown. Tell me about your roots.” Such conversations made me feel like at home, and the feeling has only grown and strengthened. It’s why Erin and I have such a deep respect for, and connection to, the folks we meet and work with. Many of our clients have become our good friends, and we’re the better for it.

It’s hard to narrow down, but I’d say the top three reasons I love the feed industry are:

  1. The people. A few words to describe the people we meet are: Big-hearted. Kind. Generous. Hard-working. Dedicated. Smart. Caring. Good. I could go on, but you get the point.
  2. The impact. The feed industry is truly feeding the world! Both directly and indirectly, they nourish everyone we love—from our beloved pets to our friends, neighbors and families. It’s one of the most important jobs.
  3. The science. We’re in awe of the science and technology that goes into making nutritious, safe feed for animals of every kind. A far cry from what people outside of the industry may envision. Much of the industry’s essential work (e.g., research, development, assessments, analysis) is a precise, carefully calibrated high-tech process.

What would you add or change about this list? Post your thoughts in the comment section below. 

Now, let’s put this goodness in ag to good use!

As much as I love talking about the warm and fuzzy feelings I have about agriculture and feed, I’m here to challenge YOU to think about all the reasons you and YOUR TEAMS love what you do—and then leverage that goodness to hire great employees.

For example, when you post your next job opening, don’t just include just the nuts and bolts of the open role. Go deeper by talking about the company’s mission and values, so potential candidates understand the purpose-driven nature of the industry. More than ever before, job-seekers want to know they’re contributing to a bigger goal–and nothing’s more important than feeding the world!

When you conduct interviews, be sure to highlight both the skills and the values you’re looking for. Chances are, your passion and commitment for your work will be contagious, and you’ll be on track to hire someone who really fits with your approach to business—and your deep commitment to what you do.

Stay tuned for more simple, practical tips and tools to help your business thrive!

People Spark Consulting is a proud member of the American Feed Industry Association.

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