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During the past 12 months I had the pleasure of facilitating four different mentoring relationships which were part of the AgVic Young farmer and new entrant mentoring program. The program placed a younger farmer, in the early years of their farming career, with an experienced farmer. They meet formally throughout the 12 months to discuss issues and opportunities that the mentee wanted to address. The enthusiasm of the mentees along with the willingness of the mentors to share their experiences and knowledge meant the program was hugely beneficial to all involved. The success of this program meant that we are continuing with a new bunch of excited mentees & mentors in 2022.

This program confirmed for me that everyone should have a mentor and be a mentor during their life. But what is the purpose of mentoring? If you google mentoring, you will get an explanation that it’s a relationship between two people with the goal of professional and personal development.

Through my facilitation role of this AgVic young farmer mentoring program, I have identified the key benefit for mentees is having someone to use as a sounding board. We all have ideas in our head and often struggle with that next stage of assessing if this idea has merit. By sharing the idea in a comfortable environment with someone who does not have any personal connection with yourself or your business, is a great way to test ideas. My work as an ORM consultant is similar to the mentor role, we provide the sounding board, some knowledge and data to help farming families achieve their goals both business and personal. It’s rewarding to see the satisfaction it brings people when they can work through an idea, problem, or opportunity.

Some of the key benefits from the perspective of both the mentee and mentor are listed below:

Having a mentor

  • Having a sounding board for ideas
  • Drawing on someone else’s experience and knowledge
  • Encouragement and support for improvement
  • Useful feedback on ideas and behaviour
  • Extends your professional network

Being a mentor

  • Reinforce your knowledge in an industry you’re passionate about
  • Be challenged by someone else’s perspective and thinking
  • Giving back to the industry
  • Improved communication and personal skills
  • Confidence building

Take home message

The benefits from being on either side of a mentoring relationship are numerous. Young farmers have the enthusiasm and willingness to have a go, while the older generation can be reinvigorated and inspired through supporting the successes of the next generation.


Tim Bateman, Agribusiness Consultant


For more information about the program please contact us:





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