Structure and stability are cornerstones of a profitable precision business. Setting performance expectations of staff, consistently capturing service revenue and avoiding unnecessary inventory are key to black or red ink.

But knowing how to prioritize and organize these aspects of a precision business poses managerial pain points.

During a dealer-to-dealer panel discussion at the 2018 Precision Farming Dealer Summit on Jan. 9, you will hear 3 precision farming managers discuss the successes — and setbacks — they’ve encountered building a productive precision team.

Speakers for this panel include:

Mike Houghtaling

Mike Houghtaling, president, P&C Ag Solutions in Reese, Mich. Since forming P&C Ag Solutions in the late 1990s as an independent technology service provider, Houghtaling has continuously evolved and, occasionally, reinvented the company to capitalize on untapped product and service needs. A willingness to experiment with niche product and service offerings brings both opportunities and challenges to carving out a lucrative corner of the precision business as a diverse independent dealer.

Houghtaling shares his management strategies for stocking smart with technology parts, streamlining billing practices to increase efficiency and creative employee incentives to capture precision revenue.

Shannon Norwood

Shannon Norwood, integrated solutions manager, TriGreen Equipment in Athens, Ala. Overseeing a 4 person precision staff tasked with servicing the dealership’s 19 locations in Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi, Norwood knows logistics and communication are essential to an efficient, educated and effective precision department. Starting out as an AMS consultant in 2010, Norwood advanced to her role 6 years ago and more than doubled the dealership’s precision revenue during the last 2 years.

Working with a diverse customer base, farming everything from corn and soybeans to peanuts and tobacco, Norwood shares her strategic secrets to delegation of duties, enforcing performance standards and trusting your precision team to own their roles and responsibilities

Keith Byerly

Keith Byerly, advanced cropping systems manager, Central Valley Ag (CVA) in Randolph, Neb. With 48 agronomy locations across eastern Nebraska, and parts of Iowa and Kansas, CVA’s diverse and expansive customer base, requires a flexible core of precision advisors. Byerly joined CVA 15 years ago and now oversees 26 precision staff — including people dedicated to data management service, equipment side sales and 2-3 staff agronomists per location. Approaching the precision business with an “agronomy-first” objective, service accounts for 70% of the company’s $5.9 million in precision sales.

Byerly shares how the retailer routinely delivers 2:1 returns on customers’ agronomic service investments and maintains a 90% customer retention rate for its precision business.

Co-located with the 26th Annual National No-Tillage Conference, the 2018 Summit will be held Jan. 8-9 at the Galt House. Among the Title Sponsors making the learning and networking opportunities possible for dealers are AgriSync, Charter Software Inc., DigiFarm VBN, e-Emphasys, Farmers Edge, HBS Systems, Laforge Systems, Montag Mfg., Reichhardt, Topcon, Trimble and Yetter Farm Equipment.

For more information and to register for the Summit click here or visit Stay tuned for more updates and speaker announcements. We’ll see you in Louisville!