A successful agricultural operation needs more than a good owner/manager, quality animals and appropriate facilities. Knowing the "how, when and why" of employee management also is a vital component that not everyone can claim. The Iowa Beef Center (IBC) and Iowa Pork Industry Center (IPIC) at Iowa State University (ISU) are coordinating and hosting employee management workshop series this winter designed to provide this information.

Russ Euken, ISU Extension program specialist, said attendees will learn about the employer’s role and responsibilities; communication, performance and legal issues; and compensation topics.

“This is a three-session workshop to be held in four locations with specific topics addressed in each session,” Euken said. “ISU Extension field staff will lead the first session, Erin Herbold with the ISU Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation will be at the second session, and Bob Milligan of Dairy Strategies is the featured speaker at the third session.”

Participants will learn about useful tools for employee management and have time during the sessions to formulate plans to implement the tools. Presenters also will provide management resources and opportunities for discussion among those at the sessions.

People should preregister at least two days prior to the first workshop they want to attend by contacting the person listed for that location. All sessions are scheduled from 10:15 a.m. to 3 p.m. The workshop fee is for meals during the workshops and can be paid at the door.

Here is the list of workshop locations, dates, preregistration contact information and fees:

* Amana, Clarion Inn – Feb. 1, 8, 15. Contact Terry Steinhart, Keokuk County Extension, 800-515-2680 or tsteinha@iastate.edu. $50 fee.
* Calmar, NCC Room 115 – Feb. 2, 9, 16. Contact Jennifer Bentley, Winneshiek County Extension, 563-382-2949 or jbentley@iastate.edu. $30 fee.
* Iowa Falls, Hardin County Extension office – Jan. 31, Feb. 7, 14. Contact Russ Euken, Hancock County Extension, 641-923-2856 or reuken@iastate.edu. $30 fee.
* Sheldon, NWICC, Bldg c, Room 349 – Feb. 15, 22, March 1. Contact Kris Yeske, Sioux County Extension, 712-737-4230 or kyeske@iastate.edu. $30 fee.

A brochure with all workshop information is available on both the IBC website (http://www.iowabeefcenter.org/events/2011EmployeeManagement.pdf) and the IPIC website (http://www.ipic.iastate.edu/events/2011EmployeeManagement.pdf)

A grant from USDA Risk Management Education Agency helps support the cost of these series which are offered in cooperation with the Iowa Pork Producers Association, Iowa Cattlemen’s Association, Iowa Farm Bureau Federation, Land O’ Lakes Purina and Iowa Poultry Association.

By Russ Euken, Iowa State University Extension beef and swine program specialist and Sherry Hoyer, Iowa Beef Center and Iowa Pork Industry Center