HMI’s Online Learning Series Getting Started Introduction to Holistic Management course had 31 participants from the United States, Canada, Great Britain and Australia. This course focused on key Holistic Management planning concepts and principles to help participants manage their farm/ranch for the triple bottom line (social, environmental, and financial sustainability) and more effectively manage resources. HMI Professional Certified Educator, Elizabeth Marks, taught and facilitated the course and incorporated some new strategies to encourage student discussion through break out sessions and enabling participants to communicate via microphone. Participants were excited to learn how to improve their ability to observe, understand, and make decisions based on what they can control. Through these new skills participants now have the knowledge and tools to improve their ability to work with nature and to increase productivity.
I really wanted to take the Introduction to Holistic Management” course to explore how these practices could be incorporated into relationships between grazers that lease public land and conservationists that protect these open spaces. I found the tools and guidance offered in this course and HMI’s philosophy are a perfect companion for fostering collaborative relationships among these parties. The Testing Questions and practical approach to managing a business with a triple bottom line were particularly insightful. Beyond using what I learned for my career goals of becoming a grassland manager on the conservation side, I was able to apply the class material to make informed decisions about matters in my personal life as well. I love the holistic approach, getting to see how others apply these tools and feeling part of a larger community. Thank you so much for the work you do and allowing me to be a part of it.
-Ali Haynes, California
Here’s the best things participant’s learned/experienced:
“How to put together a ranch/farm goal and test decisions against it, as well as looking at the current ecosystems on my ranch.”
“Creating a holistic goal based on a triple bottom line. The step by step worksheets are incredibly helpful and insightful. I also loved the Testing Questions. Those really took the process from theoretical to actual practice.”
“The testing questions”
“Holistic goal, life vision, and decision making”
“Ecosystem and soil health”
Getting Started Introduction to Holistic Management Whole Farm/Ranch Planning Course Survey Results
|Knowledge/Behavior and Confidence Increase||% Increase|
|Your ability to define your management team after session||100%|
|How to inventory your farms resources after session||100%|
|Ability to integrate social, economic, and environmental factors into your decisions after session||100%|
|Your ability to identify needed systems and protocols to create a successful farm after session||100%|
|Your ability to develop a whole farm goal after session||80%|
|Your ability to make complex on-farm or ranch decisions after session||80%|
|Your ability to assess ecosystem health after session||80%|
|Overall satisfaction with the instructor’s effectiveness||80%|
Thanks to Greenacres Foundation for their scholarship support of this program.