Summer Seminar Highlights

Good morning,  I hope everyone is having a great week.  Us here at Nuseed/Seeds 2000 had a great week highlighted by our Annual Summer Sales Seminar held this year at the Bagg Bonanza Farm near Morton, ND.  Our meeting started out with a tour of our confection sunflower plot located east of Breckenrige on the Kevin Etzler farm.  Kevin Wall went through the different hybrids explaining the pros and cons of each hybrid keying on seed types and maturity.  After that the group had the opportunity to visit our sunflower nursery in Galchutt, ND.  This was an expedited tour because our nursery sustained major hail damage on July 20th, but we still will be able to salvage a great amount of data off of this sight.  At this stop I gave a quick talk on our corn and soybean program and our effort to still bring the best traits and genetics forward that fit the growers needs.  Next Jeremy Klumper gave a talk on our oil sunflower breeding efforts.  Jeremy told us that our breeding efforts are growing at a huge rate, and that we have more then doubled our number of nursery rows within just a year.  Not only breeding rows, but we have also expanded our off site yield trials and will be adding more locations in the future.  Next, our confection breeder located at our Woodlawn, CA location Scott Radi gave us an overview of what is going on in California.  He stated that our breeding effort in California is unmatched by any other company.  Also, he made us aware of a new molecular laboratory that is about to come on line at that location that will move our breeding efforts forward at a much faster rate.   The last speaker at our nursery was Dr. Fabio Pedraza who is the confection breeder located at our Breckenrige office.  Fabio main point was that even in the face of adversity (the hail damage) we will be able to find something great.  He hopes that with the damage out there we may find something that stands better or may have improved disease resistance that we may have not saw if there was no hail.

Our afternoon consisted of sales training from Dr. Kerry Litzenberg our of Texas A&M University.  Dr. Litzenberg primary focus was on making a contagious culture of excellence through strategic customer focus, value-based relationships, competitive selling, and customer follow up.  One of the main points he focused on was “triggers”, or what certain words may set off feelings both on the sales and customer end and how to deal with this.  We all spent a great afternoon learning about the culture of sales and how to improve both our sales skills and our customers experience.  That evening was capped off by a great meal provided by the lady volunteers at the Bagg Farm as well as some competative bean bag and ladder golf tournaments.

The next day we kicked things off with Dr. Litzenberg talking about the culture of companies.  This talk was directed at our whole staff and was focused on us understanding the culture of companies.  We learned a lot on how company cultures are changing, and what we can do to help influence good culture throughout Nuseed/Seeds 2000.  The rest of our day we had the oppurtunity to hear from many different people throughout Nuseed and our parent company Nufarm.  We spent time on our brand transition and what it means to us as well as our customers and got a first look at our new marketing campaign.  Some of the individuals we learned from that afternoon were Nathan Wright who heads up seed treatments for Nufarm, Darryl Matthews who leads Nufarms efforts in the NAFTA region, and Dr. Jim Gerdes who is responsible for Nuseed’s global sunflower breeding program.  The program was that evening with our annual sales awards and I would like to congratulate the winners.  First, Steve Moen who received the award for having the highest retention of customers year over year.  The average retention of a customer year to year in the seed business is 60%, Steve managed to retain 84% of his customers which is no easy feat in this business.  The next award of the evening was the Extra Mile Award presented to Jared Swiontek.  This award is giving each year to the person that goes above and beyond their expected role to help where ever they can.  Finally, our biggest honor at Nuseed/Seeds 2000 the Master Sales Award.  This award is giving to the person that exceeds standards for sales and makes a huge impact on our business.  This years recipent was Chris Hills.  Chris was responsible for tremendous growth within our ISA network throughout ND, SD, Montana, and the high plains.

Look for Nuseed/Seeds 2000 to be a leader in the seed business for years to come.    – See more at: