The steps (or stages) in the strategic management model include the principles identified by the authors as a result of seven years of lecturing to graduate and postgraduate students in strategic agricultural management, as well as doing consultation work for a large number of farmers (nationally and internationally) and other people involved in agriculture who attended three-day courses in strategic agriculture planning and management.
This book is designed to assist the farmer/management team in thinking strategically and imaginatively about the future of the farming business, in developing generative relationships with other farmers or agricultural institutions and continue in organising and reorganising the farming business.
 Each farming business is unique, with distinctive characteristics, bio graphics, opportunities, strengths and successes. Each creates its own competitive advantage for sustainability and finds its own path of development.
 This book offers the farmer/management team or short course presenter a guideline to devise a strategic plan for any farming business in the world. It also provides practical management tools to timely identify opportunities and threats.
 The book provides exciting management tools for proper business operation.  After completing this journey to farming success, the reader will know the purpose of the farming business and understand the broader picture of the agricultural system, namely how the different pieces of the agricultural jigsaw fit together.  The approach followed in this book will therefore help to increase the management capacity of farmers/management teams, to develop their creative and entrepreneurial skills, and to improve their skills with holistic thinking.
 Various exercises are included in the book to assist the reader in relating general issues in the text to specific issues or situations in the farming business.  The book is designed so that, after consideration of what is involved at each stage of the strategic management process, the knowledge gained can be applied to the farming business situation.  These exercises will also stimulate strategic thinking in the farmer/management team, so as to complete the journey successfully. The example of a mixed farm in South Africa is provided as a means to explain the process of strategic planning and management, and the principles discussed in the book can be applied to any farming business in the world.

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