Moving Forward with #ASTACSS Panel

Kelly MarshallAgribusiness, ASTA, Audio

In this week’s mini series we’re bringing you the “Glancing Back and Moving Forward in a Rapidly Changing Industry” session from ASTA CSS, featuring Sonny Beck, founder of Beck’s Hybrids, Paul Schickler of DuPont Pioneer, and Jon Leafstedt from Kincannon and Reed.  Today’s segment features the Q&A from the event, covering tough topics like talent strategy, keeping a vision for the longevity of the company,

Making business thrive through the rapidly changing times means looking at talent differently. Will we have more farm kids in 10 years than we have today, Leafstedt challenges. Of course not, so start thinking differently about how you develop relationships with potential employees. Who are new people to approach, what talents are must-haves away from the usual land-grant universities, and how can you broaden that search?

At DuPont Pioneer that means looking to the relatively untapped resource of women and minority cultures. With colleges filled with just as many women than men, agriculture is challenged to fill their workplaces accordingly.

Beck’s Hybrids focus on the future with their intern program. Internships allow some farm kids to find out they really don’t want to work in the industry, and they often prove to those who’ve only just discovered the field of food and farming that they’re passionate about this new love. Beck also encourages new talent to make their boss look good, rather than try to outshine them. Bosses recommend employees for raises and eventually will recommend the person to fill their shoes if they move up the ladder. In return he tells those in management to hire someone better than them so they can be promoted to their next job.

Listen to the panel discussion for many more pearls of wisdom from these giants in the seed industry, and make sure you’re caught up on previous posts with Beck, Schickler, and Leafstedt. [wpaudio url=”″ text=”ASTA CSS Panel Discussion”]

ASTA CSS 2016 Photo Album

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Coverage of ASTA CSS and Seed Expo brought to you by the American Seed Trade Association and Coverage of ASTA CSS and Seed Expo brought to you by BASF Ag Products