This article is one of a series of articles about worksheets in Cultivating Your Farm’s Future: a workbook for farm succession planning in Wisconsin.
Cultivating Your Farm’s Future: a workbook for farm succession planning in Wisconsin was developed as a companion piece for Extension farm succession programs. It is designed to help family members and farming partners start conversations about important aspects of farm succession. The workbook is organized into three sections:
- Section 1: Where is the farm now?
- Section 2: Where do you want to be?
- Section 3: How do we get there?
While the workbook can be helpful to organize your information, your vision, and some options, it does not replace working with your accountant, tax specialists, or attorney. The goal of the workbook is to clarify your thoughts and make your meetings with the professionals more efficient.
The Farm Profile is a worksheet on pages 7-9 that asks questions about the farm and provides space to write or type your answers. Developing the farm profile is one step in helping take inventory of key characteristics of the farm. This helps the family/partners in at least three ways.
- Provides an opportunity for the owner generation to step back and look at the operation more broadly.
- Allows the successor generation to know the details of the operation like the owner does.
- Sets up the conversations for the next step of “Where do you want to be”.
The Farm Profile worksheet also helps you gather the information service professionals will be asking about the farm as you continue the farm succession planning process. While this worksheet will not gather everything your attorney and tax specialist may need, it is a place to record an overview of the farm business. Your attorney or other service professionals may have their own intake forms, and having this information already recorded in one place can make completing those forms easier.