One thing almost everyone in all segments of agriculture seems to agree on is finding and keeping employees is becoming a tough job. For smaller employers, competing with the kinds of benefits packages offered by larger companies can be tough. But keeping good employees isn’t always about offering the highest wage.
Surveys that try to identify what motivates people to work hard and stay with a company have found personal satisfaction is a key non-monetary factor. And what could give an employee more satisfaction than getting him noticed as an outstanding performer in his field.
That is what AGCO’s Operator of the Year competition is all about. Ag input retailers can nominate their best sprayer operator in this competition. If he—or she—wins, he drives home a new Harley Davidson motorcycle. And it doesn’t cost you, as an employer a thing.
What exactly is the Operator of the Year award, and what is the company looking for? Here’s how AGCO’s official press release describes it: “Now in its eighth season, the Operator of the Year program pays tribute to top professional operators from the U.S. and Canada based on nominations from their ag retailers. A panel of judges from AGCO evaluates nominees based on their performance both on and off the field, including such criteria as skill, dedication, customer service and community involvement.”
“Nominees from previous seasons have been praised by their retailers and customers alike for their application expertise, knowledge of their customers’ fields, willingness to do whatever it takes to get the job done, despite extremely demanding schedules, and their focus on treating every field like it’s their own. Many have also played active roles in their communities through volunteer service and many other contributions.”
And Canadian nominees don’t have to compete with U.S. entries. AGCO has split the program so that there is a winner in each country. And although there have been many worthy entrants over the past years, the number of nominations from Canada hasn’t been all that large. So the company is hoping to increase the profile of this competition.
Ag retailers can submit nominations for 2013 Operator of the Year athttp://search.applylikeapro.com. Deadline for entries is Oct. 19, 2013. The list of nominees will be narrowed to four finalists who will be invited to be AGCO’s guests at the 2013 Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) Conference & Expo Dec. 3-5 in Miami, Florida. At the conference, the 2013 Operator of the Year winner will be announced and presented with the grand prize. All nominees will receive a certificate from AGCO recognizing their nomination.
So, why not add a little extra job satisfaction to your sprayer operator’s life and at least nominate him? Even if he doesn’t win at least he’ll know you appreciate his work, adding to that personal satisfaction element.
When I mentioned this competition on Twitter, someone replied suggesting AGCO wouldn’t let someone using a competing brand of sprayer win this. But this is about the operator, not the brand of machine under his seat. So don’t let the fact you’ve given him or her a different color of sprayer to drive stop you from nominating a worthy candidate.