New products and markets, shifting supply and labour demands, emerging environmental issues and new technologies make farming a complex industry, with complex problems.
Complex problems often have:
- multiple layers and stakeholders
- disagreement about the causes, and frequently interdependent causes
- no clear solution
- confusing boundaries – they do not fit into neat functional or organisational responsibilities.
Such complexity is often beyond the capacity of any one organisation or sector to respond effectively. It calls for a different approach to identifying issues, setting goals and taking action.
Collaboration aims to include many stakeholders in a collective conversation, to develop a broader understanding of the problem and solutions. This big-picture approach enables groups that might not have previously worked together (and might even have been in opposition or competition), to join forces in creating resolution and new directions.
Do you have a complex farming issue or idea that requires ‘Big Picture’ thinking?
Try the strategies below:
Collaboration* challenges conventional thinking by:
- taking a holistic perspective
- pooling resources
- harnessing collective skills
- realising that more can be achieved by working together
- prioritising commitment to the group goal.
Collaboration builds high TRUST
The higher degree of trust needed in collaborative working relationships allows increased information sharing and pooling of resources (human, technology, financial, knowledge and data). This allows members to increase their commitment to common objectives.