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Advice for the young

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Soapweed

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http://thecattlecall.wordpress.com/2011/12/15/quit-wasting-time/

Quit wasting time


15 Dec 2011


by Doug Ferguson

About 6 weeks ago I was asked to do several interviews. I eventually agreed to do them all. I was puzzled by a question a few of them asked me. “What advice do you have for the 35 and under crowd?”

Why does someone over 25 need me to tell them something? This is where I think the Amish got things right. At an early age they do an apprenticeship. They learn skills at an early age. They get to see how the elders handle business, and any problems that may arise. This grooms them to assume adult roles in their society at a younger age.

Then take our society. We prolong childhood by going to college. Admit it, most of you party your butts off. You didn’t really learn any skills. But hey you’re smart right? That’s why when I’ve had kids from a couple different universities come here to job shadow me, they can’t even get a pen of cattle out of the pen for shipping.

Suppose I have a pen of 75 head of backgrounded cattle that weight 750#. I am selling them on the truck. We weigh the truck empty then load the cattle, and reweigh. I get paid for the weight I put on that truck. For every 15 minutes that kid chases the cattle around the pen they shrink 1%. Add on another 1% for sorting, for the compartments on the truck. That’s around 1100# of shrink. Let’s say I sold these cattle for $1.42. That kid just cost me over $1500 in shrink. Twice as much as he should have. Now if he was working for me full time, I have to figure in his wages to. The point of having an employee is to make the employer more money than the employee costs to keep around.

I continually harp about skills. This is only one example. If I had something to say to the 35 and under crowd, it would be this. Quit wasting time. Get yourself some skills and start putting them to use, NOW.
 

LazyWP

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That article is so true! I see so many young people that have a college degree, and lots of times a masters also, that are totally unemployable. I am NOT saying that a person should not go to college, I went 1 year to the University of Nebraska, and in the process learned how to deal with people. At that time I had no clue what I wanted to do when I grew up, nor did I really know until I was about 40. I have always had a job, although some of them haven't been to glamorous. Each job taught me something about operating a ranch for myself, although at this point I am not sure that will ever happen, again.

I guess what I am trying to say, is get some experience. Sometimes that may mean volunteer work, but most of the time it means starting out at the bottom, and keeping your mouth shut. The best advice I ever received was don't talk when you should be listening.
 

WyomingRancher

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LazyWP said:
I guess what I am trying to say, is get some experience. Sometimes that may mean volunteer work, but most of the time it means starting out at the bottom, and keeping your mouth shut. The best advice I ever received was don't talk when you should be listening.

Exactly! I know from personal experience, I volunteered for a lot of different jobs, and was paid in "experience". I think the easiest way to get into any job field is to volunteer, and if you have any potential, you'll be offered an internship, followed by employment... and you'll be able to see if that's the right job for you before potentially investing a lot of time and money into an education.

There are some fantastic kids out there with potential, IF you can get them to stop texting for 5 seconds to learn something.
 

myersfarm

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I FEEL you are looking on one side of fence ONLY.....you say At an early age they do an apprenticeship. They learn skills at an early age. They get to see how the elders handle business, and any problems that may arise. This grooms them to assume adult roles in their society at a younger age.


but you also say That’s why when I’ve had kids from a couple different universities come here to job shadow me, they can’t even get a pen of cattle out of the pen for shipping.


so in the Amish they get to see how a ELDERS HANDLE BUSINESS.....but did you teach the students HOW TO GET THE CATTLE OUT PEN... they are there to SHADOW YOU not for you to say get them out that pen


I was a manager 31 years telling WHY WE DO IT THIS WAY .... SHOWING ....CHECKIN TO SEE IF THEY DID IT RIGHT....RE TRAINING.. are the most important thing


if you told the student what chasing cattle COST YOU....they might understand more


AT ANY AGE PEOPLE CAN LEARN A BETTER WAY IF THEY OPEN THERE MINDS
 

RSL

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There are lots of issues identified here. I left home and went to university with a ranching skill set. At university I learned a lot about people and myself and also about information and how to find it, how to ask better questions, and when combined with skills the ability to transform cerebral stuff into practical application.
I agree with not wasting time, but I also know a lot of people in careers who aren't happy and would have been benefited to bang around for awhile figuring out what they want to do.
One skill I think a lot of us lack is looking at what are we doing, rather than how do we do this and apprenticeships or outside training is great at helping in this area.
I agree 100% that kids need to learn a wide variety of skills at a young age though and a work ethic, and that will serve them wherever, whatever and whenever they move on through life.
All that said, the best learning experiences (where the lesson really sticks) are the ones when I have had to pay the bill after the mistake. I also agree that we believe in giving too much to our kids, when the happiest kids are the ones who earn things.
 

okfarmer

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I don't have a problem with kids going to school (if there is a purpose), but the way kids go to school. Too many don't earn their way through. I agree with RSL that if kids earn something, it just means more to them. I had a cousin with a full ride to school and threw it away to be a music star. Just quit school without telling them he quit. I promise you had he worked for the $30,000 to $40,000 value they gave him in scholarships he would not have just walked away from it. But because it was given to him, he didn't care.

I think if more kids worked while going to school vs mom and dad paying for it or just taking out loans- the work ethic would be there when they got out and they would be appreciative for what they get.
 

WyomingRancher

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Another thought, how many parents have Amish skill sets to pass on to their kids? For example, my boyfriend took his son to a boy scout camp last weekend, and the parents had roped off an area used for cutting firewood with yellow crime scene tape for safety :roll: :?. Half of the adults had difficulty cutting the fire wood, let alone teaching their sons how to do it! And the bigger issue was that many wouldn't let their kids do much because they might get injured. I think the issue goes a lot deeper than just motivating children, I think a lot of adults lack real world, meaningful, work skills to pass on to their children. And in a society which coats their children in hand sanitzer, this is a problem :roll:.
 

OldDog/NewTricks

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Most of you know I have been Mr. Mom for years
V_Key has worked WITH ME much of that time.
She Thinks for Herself and Works

V_Keys Work
V_Key has asked for a Raise - and Her Boss approver it BUT the Big Boss wanted to know WHY - He asked her to write out "What She Does" - expecting 1.5 pages - V_Key gave him 4.5 pages
In a phone talk yesterday - Mr Big asked her why she is doing work He's paying two(2) other girls to do - she said she has been doing the work and that they just Copy n Paste it and Add their name.
She told him that she has been :cc: him copies of her work for some time now - for that reason...
This AM Mr. Big gave her a job to do and asked her to :Date n cc: him - She knows he has given the 2 Other Girl the same job also...
Her local boss Backs her up - saying he has given them all the same job - V will get back to him in a Day or two - the other 2 will take a week and their is in V_Key's same word most of the time.
Now well see what happens...
 

leanin' H

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WyomingRancher said:
Another thought, how many parents have Amish skill sets to pass on to their kids? For example, my boyfriend took his son to a boy scout camp last weekend, and the parents had roped off an area used for cutting firewood with yellow crime scene tape for safety :roll: :?. Half of the adults had difficulty cutting the fire wood, let alone teaching their sons how to do it! And the bigger issue was that many wouldn't let their kids do much because they might get injured. I think the issue goes a lot deeper than just motivating children, I think a lot of adults lack real world, meaningful, work skills to pass on to their children. And in a society which coats their children in hand sanitzer, this is a problem :roll:.

I totally agree! Kids can and will do amazing things if we will start them early, guide them as needed til they get the hang of it and then allow them the chance to get experience and become great. But if parents lack the skills, how can they teach? :???: There are some "kids" like those in the first example of Soap's story who already think they know it all and can't be taught much if anything. Those are the ones that grow up to protest and occupy everything currently. :wink: Being a good hand starts early. And it takes guidance! While some can have a bad work ethic, be lazy or know-it-all, and then turn a page as they mature, most (In my opinion) get started out wrong and rarely correct said behavior. :? I've said this before..... Grandpa taught me with horses, dogs and kids you'll get out of them exactly what you put in. :wink:
 

OldDog/NewTricks

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While I'm Bragging on V_Key
College took her 6 years - she lived at home - bought her own $18000. car and worked her way through college - she has NO College Debit and a GOOD Credit Rating...
To Graduate she was required to do 180 day Apprenticeship - The company she was working for DID NOT want to loose her - In talks with San Jose State the agreed for her to do her PAID Apprenticeship with them and another Company, witch she did...
2 weeks before Graduation SJ State notified her that they Would Not accept her Apprenticeship - So she did not Graduate!

San Jose State wants her to Quite her Job with Medical Insurance to take a Free Apprenticeship So She Can GRADUATE...

How does on Fight a College?
 

George

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My father was killed 13 April 1959 ( I was 9 ) and there was not the insurance then there is now. I was the oldest, Mom worked I got 3 paper routes and we all got on with life.

Then I went to the USMC ( after high school) and while I already could work they taught me how to do it right the first time!

I feel most of our kids would be better off in the military than in college!
 

okfarmer

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OldDog/NewTricks said:
While I'm Bragging on V_Key
College took her 6 years - she lived at home - bought her own $18000. car and worked her way through college - she has NO College Debit and a GOOD Credit Rating...
To Graduate she was required to do 180 day Apprenticeship - The company she was working for DID NOT want to loose her - In talks with San Jose State the agreed for her to do her PAID Apprenticeship with them and another Company, witch she did...
2 weeks before Graduation SJ State notified her that they Would Not accept her Apprenticeship - So she did not Graduate!

San Jose State wants her to Quite her Job with Medical Insurance to take a Free Apprenticeship So She Can GRADUATE...

How does on Fight a College?

An attorney unfortunately.

I would think the first thing you need to do is read the fine print of the degree program and see if it states an apprenticeship or non-paid apprenticeship. If there is nothing specific, or if you can prove that they authorized her using a paid apprenticeship- Then get what ever documentation you have had with them regarding them accepting it. Does the company she works for have any documented communication? If two out of three parties agree with what was stated, it will be much harder for the third to argue against it. But I doubt you get anywhere until they think you are serious- a letter from an attorney.

After being burned on a couple hand shake deals, as that is what I grew up around, I use email almost exclusively these days so that I have record of what was said. Most of the time, when doing business or dealing with employees and I have to talk to someone I record my call. It is amazing how many people have situational amnesia until you prove what was actually stated.

Being honest and keeping your word is a skill set that needs to be taught as well.
 

okfarmer

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George said:
My father was killed 13 April 1959 ( I was 9 ) and there was not the insurance then there is now. I was the oldest, Mom worked I got 3 paper routes and we all got on with life.

Then I went to the USMC ( after high school) and while I already could work they taught me how to do it right the first time!

I feel most of our kids would be better off in the military than in college!

Our country would be better off as well. Mandatory 2 years of service, would be a good thing. I think gang problems would decrease significantly as well. Give wayward kids something to belong to and pride in themselves.
 

flatlander

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Consider this: Kid did go to college,did earn the money for college and then did want to put the skill set and the education to use on the farm/ranch.

Couldn't make it work. Just to much "we have always done it like this" attitude. 30 years later, the farm/ranch is run down,place didn't grow,ect.

Point is: If you're going to raise a kid with the right values and work ethic,then encourage education; take inventory of your personal skills when they come back wanting to utilize everything he has. :wink:
 

redrobin

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Justin said:
redrobin said:
College is a waste of time and money usually.

:? :???: that could be the dumbest comment i've ever seen posted here.
Justin if you think that's the dumbest thing ever posted here then you've not been paying attention. I've said things that were even more stupid. Would you please explain why my opinion is wrong?
 

Justin

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redrobin said:
Justin said:
redrobin said:
College is a waste of time and money usually.

:? :???: that could be the dumbest comment i've ever seen posted here.
Justin if you think that's the dumbest thing ever posted here then you've not been paying attention. I've said things that were even more stupid. Would you please explain why my opinion is wrong?

i will say, college may not be for everyone, but to say it is a waste of money and time..well that's just a ridiculous statement. IMO
 

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