Finding the stride….

For the first time all season, I finally feel like we are hitting a stride.  Sounds odd doesn’t it?  We’ve been producing since February, this year, and we are just finding our stride for the year?  In this game, there is little that is consistent.  Clients and orders change weekly. Changes in quantity, changes in type, figuring out how to fill orders with no lead time.  It’s always fluid.  Yet, there is some consistency to it as well, two planting days a week, two harvest days a week. Lights on the same time every day, watering on a schedule as well.  

The stride is when the machine moves flawlessly, effortlessly, and with reliable consistency.  It takes a special kind of person to have a love of growing crops and providing clean and healthy food to people and providing quality local produce to Chef’s to use in their kitchens.  I’ve found a team that harbors those qualities. It’s taken a couple of months for the team members to learn each other, learn the methods, the nuances and be able to adjust, react, and handle things as they come through.  Being able to delegate with confidence is essential.  I don’t have to worry much anymore, the questions are fewer and fewer. This, this is where we needed to be, operating as a team yet independently towards a common goal. 

With all the bumps, bruises, sweat, and setbacks, we are finally at a point where things are moving well. I fully expect more of the same in the future, but with a quality team those set backs will be less catastrophic. What I’ve learned from this particular lesson, there have been so so many lessons along the way, is that no one person can do it all.  You must have faith in others and let them do what they do best without micromanaging. It was incredibly hard to share the secrets of my trade with another. It was even harder to let the reins go a bit and trust. 

This journey hasn’t been just about growing microgreens and hydroponic greens.  This has been a journey of self discovery. I finally figured out what I want to be when I grow up, a Farmer.  Honestly, when the inspiration took me, I had no idea what it meant to be a farmer.  I was standing on my steps one morning, having just spent the early hours just after day break in the garden weeding, pruning, and harvesting. I was covered in dirt, sweat, and bug bites but I felt amazingly calm.  It was a Tuesday morning, I wasn’t at my desk at work, I was where my soul felt fulfilled.  I had a date with some ladies, about 100,000 of them, and I needed to get cleaned up and prepared to meet them; My bee hives needed tending.  Later that day I was to can the tomatoes I’d harvested that morning.  These tasks, my soul told me, are what should be on my “To Do” list.  I was suddenly inspired. In that moment, I set forth on my journey. I’d been growing food since I was a child, but it was at this point I finally felt inspired to move forward with it. Though I had absolutely no clue how and it would be years before the path finally started to illuminate. That path has taught me some amazing things. Many of them can not even be articulated as they are intrinsic and introspective.  

Together, we have found a stride.  The machine is working, it’s churning out amazing foods and brining smiles to the faces of people of whom I would never have met and interacted with otherwise.  It feels good.  Most importantly we, together, have a purpose and we are working together for the business goals, and working independently for our personal goals.

Thanks for stopping in to read.

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