Early Adopter or Laggard?
Are you an Early Adopter or a Laggard? If you have not yet realized the status quo cow-calf business is NOT working, then you will most likely be among the Laggards. Success in this business will depend on your ability to change with the times. Those who do not change will eventually go out of business. It’s as simple as that!
A few futuristic Innovators started making major changes in their cow-calf operations 30 years ago. For 20+ years, their neighbors thought they were certifiably crazy! These were the original Herd Quitters. From my perspective, the Early Adopters started coming on the scene about 10 years ago. Fortunately, the cow-calf industry is still in the Early Adopter stage. The Early Adopters are transitioning from high-input agriculture that is focused on increasing pounds per animal (bragging rights) to ultra-low-input agriculture that is focused on increasing pounds per acre (profit). There’s a BIG difference! The Early Adopters are also transitioning from a business based on fossil fuel energy to a business based on FREE solar energy. They have increased stocking rates by at least 30% with the right size and type of momma cows. Many practice rotational grazing to increase stocking rates by another 50 to 200 percent. Consequently, the Early Adopters are two to ten times more profitable than all of their neighbors. There is reason to believe the Early Majority movement is just around the corner. Economics are forcing more and more cow-calf producers to make changes in their operation. In many cases, the only other option is to go out of business. Most of the failing farms and ranches will be purchased by the Early Adopters. There has always been huge benefits to being early to make necessary changes. There will always be consequences for being late. By the time the Late Majority decides it is time to change, the Innovators and a few of the Early Adopters will already be on to the next major change. There is no hope for the Laggards! That’s a little sad – but I no longer have much sympathy for people who are unwilling to think for themselves.
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