HighGround, one of SaluteMyJob’s partners, has featured in an article looking at how the personal traits of military men and women are very similar to those underpinning a successful career in agriculture.
HighGround is a charity dedicated to helping military leavers make the transition into rural-based industries and this year sees its annual Rural Weeks programme move to Bicton College in Devon, introducing individuals across all ranks from the Army, RAF and Navy to the opportunities that exist across a range of rural sectors, from farming to horticulture and forestry.
The article, in Farmers Weekly, interviews founder and development director Anna Baker Cresswell, who is behind the initiative and who believes there is a huge untapped potential for British agriculture.
Anna says the talent leaving the military is vast – and ranges from soldiers with battle experience to highly qualified engineers and officers with logistic and management know-how.
“The military provides so many ready-made skills, particularly in leadership, work ethic and engineering. The opportunity to harness some of those technical skills in precision farming and mechanical engineering is an easy win for everyone,” she told the magazine.
Case study: From Black Watch to Farm Manager
- Jonathan Kerr spent nine years serving with the Black Watch, one of the oldest Scottish infantry regiments. He left three-and-half years ago as a Captain and has recently been appointed as farm manager for Velcourt at Green Drove Farm, Pewsey, Wiltshire, overseeing more than 900ha of arable cropping and two full-time staff. Jonathan believes military training is well suited to farming and more would come into the industry if they knew about the opportunities.
The article is a thought-provoking read, showing how the vast amount of skills – and the diversity within the Armed Forces, is a great match for the agricultural industry – and if more ex-military personnel transition into the trade, it would be of huge benefit to industry.
As Anna says: “Attracting more diversity into the industry – with people from different backgrounds and skills – can only help to accelerate innovation, professionalism and best practice on farms.”