A Photographic Lesson in Perspective

It was a day full of media creation:

  • Interview an agronomist on-camera about current disease pressures.
  • Interview an energy manager on-camera about propane safety.
  • Film a propane sales specialist conducting an in-home safety check.
  • Take various photos during each of these video shoots to have stored in our photo library for use down the road.

We arrived at the homestead where we were going to shoot the in-home propane safety check and I was impressed. A beautiful home which sat off the road, a well-manicured yard, and flawless landscaping that seemed to put a bow on the entire package.

I took many photos that day and have since used them extensively over the last two years.

Fast forward to Tuesday of this week. I asked our CEO to give a promotional piece a final review before sending it to print.

“The detailer looks good. Accurate. But that photo needs replaced. It is terrible,” said our CEO.

“What photo?!” I responded. I work to ensure every print piece that comes out of our office is professionally done and pleasing to the eye.

“The propane one. What do you see when you look at that photo?” he asked.

I studied it.

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“A man delivering propane on a sunny day. A clean truck,” I was quick to remark.

“Weeds! Two weeds. Big weeds. They really stand out,” he responded.
I laughed. “Those aren’t weeds! Those are flowers. That’s part of the landscaping around  the tank. Black eyed Susan’s. They’re just not in bloom,” I defended my use (extensive use over the last two years) of the photo. It had been on every social media channel and used in several print pieces.

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Black eyed Susan

He studied the photo. “Those are weeds. Goldenrod. They need pulled or sprayed.” He was steadfast in his conviction of weed identification and treatment.

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Goldenrod

I asked why, if the photo bothered him and it was used so many times, had he not mentioned it before now? He revealed that he had confidence that I would notice the weeds, remove the picture from things and the problem would be solved. Boy was he wrong!

I was taken back by the misunderstanding, so I tried explaining that the very reason we shot at that particular customer’s home was because it was so well tended.

Well groomed.

Landscaped with colorful details waiting to emerge.

No weeds.

Immaculate.

Our CEO then explained that anyone who sees this photo won’t know that. They only see a guy delivering propane with two big weeds in the way. Our audience didn’t drive up the driveway and see the house, the yard, the barn. They only see the goldenrod (black eyed Susans).

He was right. Unless you know your flowers pre-bloom, these plants looked like weeds.

I appreciated that particular photo because of the natural lighting that day. The clean and well-maintained propane truck. The faceless driver, intentional so no one associated the image with a particular person. The spotless propane tank. And finally, the two flowers awaiting their time to shine.

But unless you were in my shoes – or, the shoes of the homeowner who planted them with intention – you wouldn’t know those were flowers. You may think those were weeds.

It was a classic lesson in perspective: What one person sees, another may not.

That is why it is critically important to value perspectives as we move through life experiences, careers and relationships.

In fact, the key to successful relationships lies solely in our ability to value the perspective of another and find the ability to look at things from a point of view other than our own.

It can be tough, but it can be done.

Is there an area in your personal life, career or relationships that might benefit from a change in perspective?

To step out of your shoes and into another’s?

To ask questions in order to learn, rather than assume? Especially during this time of uncertainty and unpredictability.

Perhaps now is the time. I know that a brief conversation in the corner office earlier this week sure changed the way I’ve thought in the last couple days, and it will continue to do so. I’ll certainly remember this lesson when I am tasked with the job of taking photos or video on behalf of our cooperative.

Now, I’d love to visit more with you about perspective, but I’m spending the rest of the morning replacing the goldenrod (black eyed Susans) photo on every piece of promotional material on which it has appeared.

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By Lindsay, Communications Manager

 

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EnergyPro Assurance

Our EnergyPro sales team’s milage has slowed quite a bit in the last month for obvious CMC Vertical Tag CMYKreasons. They’re taking quite seriously the health and well-being of their customers and families. EnergyPro customers can rest assured that while you may not see them in the office, at the pump or at the farm gate, they’re still working diligently to provide the highest quality fuel and lubricants to our customers.

This week we invite you to meet the dynamic team members and hear their message regarding the slow in -face-to-face contact.

We invite you to reach out to Jason, Cindy or Mae for your energy needs. The show must go on, and we’re here to help.

Jason Deboo: 765.914.1541, jdeboo@harvestlandcoop.com

Cindy Lee: 765.993.4359, clee@harvestlandcoop.com

Mae McDaniel: 765.748.3636, mmcdaniel@harvestlandcoop.com

 

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Essential Work

We’re swimming in uncharted waters, and that statement has absolutely nothing to do with the water standing in the basement of many farmhouses in the area due to the incessant rain.

COVID-19The COVID-19 pandemic has shut down schools, national tournaments, universities,
restaurants, businesses, airlines, libraries and so much more. The financial loss that will
affect nearly every American due to this outbreak could linger for years. And to think, two weeks ago, it seemed to be something only taking place on the other side of the world.

On Tuesday of this week, the first case of COVID-19 was diagnosed at the local hospital and immediately level two travel watch was enforced. Level two means that conditions are threatening to the safety of the public. During a “watch” local travel advisory, only essential travel, such as to and from work or in emergency situations, is recommended, and emergency action plans should be implemented by businesses, schools, government agencies, and other organizations.

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Our leadership team had a long and impassioned conversation regarding our business operations during this extremely fluid time.

The safety of our employees.

How symptoms look or feel.

Long-term planning.

Addressing customer needs during a time of social distancing, a phrase that we’d never heard of seven days ago.

How we take care of business, by taking care of people.

We realized with great certainty: Our work is essential.

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When a fuel driver shows up in the morning and loads his truck, he’ll spend the day delivering to tanks that will fill fire trucks, law enforcement vehicles, and semis that will deliver fresh produce or boxed pasta to Kroger.

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Our work is essential.

When a propane driver comes to work and maps his route for the day, he delivers propane to nursing homes, rural churches, houses on 700 W. that are full of e-learning children and tired parents, and he also fills the tank at the hospital so the generator is operational. Then he goes north and supplies propane to the temperature-controlled hog finishing barns with 1,000 head inside.

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Our work is essential.

When a truck driver loads his semi full of corn and departs the ag center, he is delivering corn to pet food factories so beloved dogs can have food available in a few months. He also delivers feed to turkey farmers who will supply Thanksgiving birds, pork producers who are currently feeding out hogs that will be become the next great plate of bacon and also beef producers who will put hamburgers on the grill over Labor Day weekend.

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Our work is essential.

When a YieldPro Specialist drives down the lane of a 100-year-old farmstead and sits at the kitchen table with a grower, he is working with her to map out plans for fertilizer, field work, seed, seed treatment, starter fertilizer, pre-emergence, dormant spray and beyond so that her farm family can supply the food chain and feed the world.

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Our work is essential.

When our IT team shows up to Richmond and enters a room full of wires, technology and computers, they serve as internal problem solvers that ensure farmer-members can pay their bills online during a quarantine, problem solvers that keep phone lines operational to take calls at one of our 40 locations or problem solvers that fix a dispatch glitch in an applicator machine trying to get fungicide on several fields.

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Our work is essential.

When our support staff team shows up to the ag center or office and situates themselves in front of the computer, they’re about to take on a day of processing payments so a family can get propane again in April, paying our bills so the lights stay on here for our continued work and even ensuring our 300 employees get paid at the end of the month.

Our work is essential.

We are not entertainment (though employees’ laughter could argue otherwise on certain days with co-workers at the co-op).

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We are essential.

And we’ll remain operational, working for your family and ours, as long as we’re able.

We are a business that supports the consumer at every angle, and it is a privilege to carry such heavy weight on our shoulders that so many depend on us. We thank you for that opportunity.

Together, we have experienced adversity as an industry, as a nation, and as a world. More importantly, we have always navigated through it –  and we will, again.
Thank you for making our daily work essential.

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You can read more about our commitment to safety here.

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Energy Price Management: Contracting Options

Big jobs require big planning – how can you best prepare for the work ahead?
  • Harvest Land can provide ways to help you plan and manage your fuel expenses, and these tools help take the guess work out of the process.
  • We offer two types of contracts to help you mitigate risk in the price of your liquid fuels: Flex Contracting and Fixed Contracting.
  • We can help you determine which works best for you!
Watch the video below to join Jason DeBoo and Tim Deardorff of Harvest Land’s energy team as they explain both contracts and how they can truly help your operation’s bottom line.

 

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Photo Friday: Fueling Freedom 2019

CountryMark’s 2019 Fueling Freedom event was a success at our Elwood, Greenville, Greenfield, Oxford and United Energy locations. We’re proud to partner with CountryMark on this event that does so much for the families of soldiers. More than $57,000 was raised across all participating CountryMark stations. 

We thought this Facebook post from a CountryMark employee encapsulates the value in this event:

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Here is a breakdown of our results:

Greenfield Store: 1990 gallons and $203 in donations

Elwood Station: 355 gallons

KDS Oxford: 1906 gallons and $614 in donations

Greenville Station: 1896 gallons

United Energy: 2738 gallons and $178 in donations

Today’s Photo Friday offers a glimpse of the day!

Many thanks to all who participated. 

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Last Call! Fueling Freedom 2019

This morning we want to encourage you to support our 2019 Fueling Freedom program today, June 21!

Purchase fuel at the CountryMark stations listed below, and we’ll donate 50 cents for every gallon of fuel pumped from noon – 5:00 PM to the local National Guard Family Readiness Group.

Greenville, OH

Greenfield, IN

Elwood, IN

Oxford, OH (KDS Express)

Fountaintown, IN (United Energy)

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Did You Know?

  • 100% of the proceeds from Fueling Freedom will go to support local National Guard Family Readiness Groups.
  • Family Readiness Groups fund activities for troops and their families. Many of the Family Readiness Groups use their funds to host summer picnics, hold Christmas dinners, send packages to deployed soldiers, and offer after-school programs for children of American soldiers.
  • Our National Guard troops defend our country and our people every day. This Fourth of July, we want them to know how much we appreciate what they do for us.
  • This is the 11thyear the CountryMark system has hosted Fueling Freedom events.

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We encourage you to come out for Fueling Freedom, purchase CountryMark TOP TIER gasoline and premium diesel fuel, and register to win a $150 fuel card. One fuel card will be given away at each CountryMark fueling station participating in Fueling Freedom.

Show your patriotism and come out (to Greenville, OH; Greenfield, IN; Elwood, IN; Oxford, OH (KDS Express); or Fountaintown, IN (United Energy)) today from 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM!

 

 

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Our Commitment to Propane Safety

Harvest Land delivers propane in eastern Indiana and western Ohio to keep homes, businesses, schools, and churches running. Propane has proven its versatility for heating homes, heating water, cooking, fueling gas fireplaces, lighting and heating outdoor living spaces, crop drying, greenhouse operations, irrigation and much more. It’s environmentally friendly and cost-effective.

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We operate with no hidden fees (such as delivery, environmental and membership). It’s as simple as that. We also have programs to fit your budget and lifestyle with contracts, tank programs, guaranteed pricing and more.

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Safety for our customers is our top priority. This is why each of our propane professionals are CETP trained and certified. This week we invite you to take a look inside our propane business and the careful steps we take to ensure your family is safe with Harvest Land Propane.

Energy Risk Management: Contracting Options

We know that what happens overseas affects your price at the pump, daily. Harvest Land can provide ways to help you plan and manage your fuel expenses, and these tools help take the guesswork out of the process.

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We offer two types of contracts to help you mitigate risk in the price of your liquid fuels: Flex Contracting and Fixed Contracting.

Watch the video below to join Meggie Foster, Energy Sales & Marketing Manager, and John Speer, Energy Manager, as they explain both contracts and how they can truly help your operation’s bottom line. 

 

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Spring Oil Sale Going On Now

Recent warmth in the air has us gearing up for spring. It won’t be long at all until machines are moving at break-neck pace to get a crop in the ground. We want you to be prepared. At a discount.

Harvest Land’s Spring Oil & Grease Sale is going on now, allowing you to stock up on the oils and greases you need to run this season, at a discounted rate.

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CountryMark Advantage™ Full Synthetic Heavy Duty Diesel Engine Oil is engineered for hard-working diesel engines. This unique formulation offers outstanding wear protection, oil consumption control and extended-drain technology. CountryMark Advantage™ Full Synthetic Heavy Duty Diesel Engine Oil is designed with advanced technology which extends oil drain intervals, improves soot control, provides faster lubrication during cold starts and maximizes total engine performance.

CountryMark Advantage™ Polyurea Grease lasts up to 50% longer than lithium greases. It has excellent water resistance and is an ideal grease for both chassis and bearings. This grease protects susceptible parts against rust and provides excellent resistance to oxidation. Learn more here.

To view the full product line card and see all that we offer from CountryMark, click here.

We invite you to you contact your EnergyPro Specialist or local ag center to learn more. This sale does end April 30!

 

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Generations of Fuel Delivery

After 44 years of service to our cooperative system, Bob Dubach is retiring from Harvest Land today. Bob has been an incredible asset to our team and has become a familiar face around the northern part of our territory while delivering fuel to businesses and homes for decades. Bob’s commitment to quality customer service has been evident throughout his entire career. His service has encompassed the cooperative spirit: helping others beyond yourself.

A personal note from Bob:

 After 44 years with the co-op and 34 years of delivering petroleum products, I have decided to retire. I want to take this time to thank each of you for allowing me to take care of your petroleum needs. Through the years we have developed some wonderful relationships. Some go back many years. I can remember my father doing business with your fathers. And with route changes, some not as long. Whatever the case, I am thankful for the opportunity to get to know each of you.

I feel truly blessed for my family, my health, and the job I had. The years have passed quickly. I am happy to inform you that Adam will be taking over the route in your area and is ready to get to know and meet your petroleum needs. Thank you again for the years you have allowed me to be your petroleum route salesman.

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Bob is a bit of a historian and has kept photo records of the fuel trucks not only he – but also his father – has driven throughout the decades. We thought these photos were quite telling, not only of the change that these men have seen in the many years they’ve dedicated to fuel delivery throughout the co-op system, but also the value in a job you enjoy. This week, as Bob closes out his career with the co-op, we invite you to open his fuel family scrapbook and enjoy a few photos from the years gone by.

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We thank Bob for his incredible 44 years of service. There is something to be said for a man who remains committed to a job through many changes, inclimate weather, volatile markets and so much more. We say with great confidence that our cooperative is a better place because of his commitment and pride in the work.

If you’re interested in a career with Harvest Land, we invite you to visit our website and review the opportunities before you.

 

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