Author: Michael Rosmann

How Satisfying is Farming Compared to Other Occupations?

The British publication, The Guardian, ranked 274 occupations in 2014 according to how satisfied job-holders rated their occupations.  Clergy rated their work as the most satisfying, followed by chief executives and senior business management officials. Proprietors and managers in agriculture and horticulture ranked third; farmers ranked eighth among the 274 jobs that were analyzed.  Company support staff who were office managers and quality assurance personnel ranked 4th and 5th; healthcare business managers and healthcare practitioners ranked 6th and 7th respectively. Clergy in the U.S., like British clergy, also rated their work as most satisfying in a 2011 report in...

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Procrastination: What it Signals About Farm People and Others

Few people are not guilty of procrastination.  I’m among the guilty, just ask my wife, but please don’t tell her I admitted this. Marilyn knows I put off such tasks as preparing taxes, mowing the lawn, and performing jobs around our home and farm that I view of lesser importance than what I prefer to be doing.  To her, the jobs I avoid often are paramount in her mind. I have my priorities, and they are mostly carefully chosen.  My procrastination is not a flaw, but rather the concentration of my efforts toward what I think is more important,...

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A Hopeful Future For Farming in the U.S. is Nearby

Many large and small commercial farm operators in the U.S. and worldwide are struggling to make ends meet currently.  The 2017 farming year looks like it could be a “turn-around” year, but there will be casualties among some overly indebted producers who want to continue farming and will have to cease or restructure significantly in order to keep a foot in agricultural production. This year, and what could follow, offer hope for most who have carefully managed their expenses and incomes through various protections like insurance, modest purchases of new equipment and facilities, and marketing contracts that guarantee a...

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Why Cattle Are So Important To Humans

Cattle have contributed to the survival of humans for many thousands of years, initially as animals our hunter-gatherer ancestors pursued for food, tools, and leather, and which farmers raised for the past 10,000 years or so as livestock for meat, milk, and as draft animals.  Cattle also have become an indicator of economic status. In bygone eras and still for traditional Masa in central Africa and several other African tribal groups, cattle are a form of currency.  The right of Masa men to marry well in their culture hinges on the number of cattle owned by prospective suitors. In...

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Practical Considerations To Manage Farm Financial Stress

A January 2017 article entitled “Getting Ready for Farm Loan Renewal” by Tina Barrett in the University of Nebraska publication, Crop Watch, prompted me to write this addition to the ongoing Farm and Ranch Life columns about how current farm financial stress affects agricultural producers and what we can do to work our way through difficult times. Barrett is the executive director of the Nebraska Farm Business Association. She grew up on a farm in central Nebraska. Barrett’s article also appeared in her association newsletter, On Pasture. In a straight-forward fashion, she offered practical suggestions for dealing with stress...

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