When Will You Find Time?

John Ellsworth of Success Strategies

John Ellsworth

This is a question I recently asked a new client of mine. Please allow me to explain my thought process. During our initial discussions and analysis, we had discovered several areas of his operation that needed some ‘fine tuning.” In other words, they were unintentionally off course in terms of their costs. Please take my word for it. They were way too high, in comparison to other producers.

To provide you with some background, his production was solid, and most of his expenses were admirable in comparison to industry guidelines. However, his Feed Expense and Cost of Supplies were both well above where they should have been. I had originally assumed that they were two separate challenges. However, as it turned out, they were both traced back to a common source.

For years, in an effort to save money, he had used the same nutritionist from a local feed company. However, while saving the $1,000/month fee of a neutral third-party nutritionist, he was spending thousands more on Feed Costs. His Supplies expense was also being impacted by the use of some “Pixie Dust” powder that was being added to the calves’ rations. Please don’t ask me why it was included in his Supplies cost. I assume it was placed there because of its’ “medicinal benefits…”

Now, understand that any nutritionist can run into these same challenges and then need to make some changes. The difference here was that his current feed advisor wasn’t willing to make the necessary changes. With the guidance of another nutritionist, this producer lowered his Feed Cost by $0.40/cwt and decreased his Supplies Cost by $0.10/cwt. Now, this change generated $10,500 of reduced costs per month. After paying the new Nutritionist $1,000 per month, his bottom-line return was still boosted by $114,000 per year.

Now, while the net impact of this change was dramatic, my point is not to pick on his former nutritionist. This situation could happen with almost any advisor. The significance really revolves about the willingness of this producer to fully analyze these sizeable cost variances and then actually take the steps to improve his results. How much money had he left on the table because he was “too busy” to make these changes? Our industry is one with thin margins in most years. That is precisely why it’s so important to take action today! Do you know the best time to plant an oak tree? The best time was 20 years ago, but the second-best time is today.

Going back to the original question, “When Will You Find Time?” your very survival depends upon this type of thinking. Based upon my experiences of the past 22 years, it will make a huge difference. If I can assist you with this process, please contact me at john@success-strategies.com or 209-988-8960.

Editor’s Note: To listen to John’s recent interview on DairyVoice Podcast, click below:





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