If you give a Farm Bureau staffer a ladder…

You know that kid’s book,  “If you give a mouse a cookie.” It spawned a bunch of other books like “If you give a moose a muffin.” And “If you give a dog a donut.”

Well, I’m here to tell you, those critters have nothing on Farm Bureau’s creative staff.

If a Farm Bureau staffer, (namely Val Gordon, who has a wonderfully creative decorating side to her) sees a ladder in a second-hand store) she might think it would make a great coat rack for the Bismarck office.

But the ladder needs hardware on which to hang said coats. And a trip to a nearby hobby store produces no definitive results. So the ladder leans against a wall in the “media” room for a couple of months until another Farm Bureau staffer (namely Pete Hanebutt) takes it upon himself to move the project forward and purchase various hooks and knobs  to hang the coats on the ladder that needs to be hung on the wall.

He then brings his sons in on a weekend and assembles the hardware on the ladder and hangs the ladder on the wall.

(To the delight of the other two staffers in the Bismarck office, Lisa Hauf, and me, and everyone who stops in our office.)


It is as much a conversation piece as a highly functional coat/hat rack.

I dare not imagine what they could do with a piece of machinery!!!

See what each member of the NDFB staff does for the organization at this link: Meet the NDFB Staff.

Let’s get social

I started working for Farm Bureau before the Internet became ubiquitous. Heck, before there even WAS an Internet. I remember a Nodak agent telling me back in the early ’90s how one day this thing called the Internet was gonna be big.

Man, was he right! And NDFB has jumped in with both feet. We have our website, and are on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, PinterestInstagram and YouTube.

It’s a lot of “social” to keep up on and try to keep everything fresh and different. And depending on the rest of the work load, I tend to be a little hit-and-miss in social media posting. But it’s an enjoyable part of the job, and provides a little “instant gratification” when someone likes or favorites one of our posts.

One of my fun projects this past fall was working with Val Wagner, of Wag’n Tales fame, not to mention her role as North Dakota Farm Bureau’s Promotion and Education chair (and a member of the American Farm Bureau Federation’s P&E Committee).

We did the video below as an example for her to take to the AFBF P&E Committee, but I thought she did such a good job, I wanted to share it with our folks in the state who may have been thinking about jumping into the social media world, but just haven’t taken that step out of fear or uncertainty.

If you are reading this, you may not need an ag-related social media primer, but feel free to share it with friends or relatives who want to start conversations about why farmers do what they do with others but just aren’t sure how.