Don’t leave things to the last minute, do your preparation in bite-sized pieces – and most of all enjoy the experience and embrace the networking opportunities the Dairy Industry Awards provide.
That’s the advice of Waikato regional team managers Steve and Amy Gillies, of Putaruru, for the 31 entrants competing in the region’s DIA competition’s three categories this month.
For the Waikato region, nine entrants are to compete in the Share Farmer section, 13 in the Dairy Manager section, and 13 in the Dairy Trainee section.
“We have entrants from Taupiri down to Otorohanga and across to Putaruru,” says Amy. “The youngest is 19 and the oldest is about 35.”
As past entrants in the 2018 Share Farmer of the Year section, the Gillies believe preparation is the key to success in the awards – that bring benefits to all who enter, whether you win or not.
“Do your preparation in bite-sized pieces to keep it manageable. And use the knowledge and expertise of people around you to help with preparation,” says Amy.
And besides wining, she says the main benefit to those who enter the DIAs is the networking opportunities with other contestants, generally like-minded people, plus judges and sponsors.
“It’s an easy way to get your name out there and be at the top of the pack with potential employers.”
Waikato’s preliminary judging round for the Dairy Trainee section is February 3-5, and takes place for Dairy Manager and Share Farmer sections from February 11-13. Final judging for the Dairy Trainee section is February 24, and final rounds for Dairy Manager and Share Farmer sections from February 25-27.
Winners will be announced at the Waikato Regional Awards dinner on March 11 at Sir Don Rowlands Centre, Karapiro. Tickets to the evening cost $90 each. For more information, see: www.dairyindustryawards.co.nz/regions/waikato
Then a regional Winners’ Field Day will be held April 1, with the location to be on-site of the regional Share Farmer winners’ farming business.