A robust business plan that is a living document, great teamwork and the preparedness to seek advice were three key factors in Simon and Elle Joblin of Greenhill Station winning the 2018 Tararua Sheep and Beef Business of the Year, according to speakers at the station woolshed last month.
They were talking to a crowd of 150 farmers and industry representatives at the end of a six-hour farm tour of Greenhill Station, during which the operation of the business was explained in detail by the couple.
Speaking for BakerAg, a sponsor and facilitator for the day, Chris Garland said there "was no more positive and effective learning experience on the farming calendar" than a field day like this.
The importance of setting up a business plan and implementing it was highlighted as a vital strategy which helped achieve goals, and attracted people and finance.
The Joblins were described as a great team who "combined different strengths to move in the same direction".
Their excellent relationship with equity partners Charlie and Karla Matthews was also commended and seen as a great asset.
"Simon and Elle had proved themselves every step of the way and had developed huge trust in the equity relationship," said Garland.
ANZ representative and one of the judges, Sean Stafford, said the couple had entered the competition several years before and he was "blown away by the progress they had made since then".
He said repeatable profitability was critical in an equity partnership and Greenhill Station was performing way above the average. He said Greenhill's example proved "sheep and beef operations can return a profit".
He concluded saying Greenhill was "one of the more impressive businesses he had judged in his six years".
In reply the couple thanked ANZ organisers for resurrecting the competition six years ago, thanking sponsors for their support and the people who had helped them along the way.
As to advice for those starting out in the industry, Simon said to just go out and improve yourself, ensuring people see what you are capable of and Elle advised "never say never".