We develop and facilitate strategic solutions in partnership with our clients. This sees us develop innovative, creative, and future-focused activities that create change and impact. Here are a few projects that we’ve led.
Hosted by Partners in Ag, RuralScope was contracted to develop and facilitate the people and wellbeing focus of this inaugural event in Victoria. The event’s focus is to nourish mind and body with newfound knowledge, delicious food made with local produce and social connection with likeminded people. It’s a perfect blend of thought-provoking professional development, social connection and entertainment. With 110 attendees, Jo Eady facilitated a highly interactive tools focussed session about emotional / physical resilience with on farm focus. Sharing her personal story you could have heard a pin drop. Taking the stage with Celebrity Chef, Simon Bryant and learning all about lentils and legumes was a highlight.
The National Farmers Federation Congress is the foremost event for Australia’s farm sector – bringing farm leaders, agribusiness and government together in our nation’s capital. The 2022 Congress explored agriculture’s role in sustaining Australia’s communities, economy and national environment. Cotton Australia contracted Jo Eady, RuralScope to lead a delegation of 15 (including 13 growers) to this event. The key goals were to ensure visibility of the cotton industry, gather new knowledge, interact with leaders from other sectors, network with politicians and be active members of discussions affecting Australian agriculture. Our role included development and facilitation of pre, during and post event briefings including the sharing of knowledge and skills between established and emerging leaders.
GrainGrowers Limited recognised the need for the sector to objectively measure and demonstrate the grain industry’s sustainability and to align with and understand community expectations. At the same time, they also invested in a cohort of progressive farmers to support this awareness and understanding through meaningful dialogue, drawing on the experiences of growers. RuralScope developed the Grains Social Leadership Program to build the skills and capacity of these growers, who are already influencers, in their own networks and communities to be effective advocates for the Australian grains industry across multiple levels, as drivers of change. In partnership with GrainGrowers, RuralScope facilitated 5 programs for growers and supported the establishing of the Grains100 advocacy network.
Strategic planning is a process undertaken to create a shared vision and set in place plans to achieve breakthrough results. RuralScope has been engaged by a range of clients to facilitate their strategic planning processes. This includes Cotton Australia, National Rural Women’s Coalition, Red Dairy Breed Society, Qld Macropod and Wild Game Harvesting Association, Gold Coast Adventure Tourism Inc, Gold Coast Regional Economic Development Plan, Landcare NSW and Murrumbidgee Landcare Inc. Each is conducted over a unique time frame from days to months depending on size and scope. RuralScope uses a human centred approach ensuring buy in, participation and high level ownership of the plan.
Many leaders share that mentors are important in their leadership development. RuralScope worked with the Queensland Department of Primary industries, over 3 years, to develop A Vision for Change – Women Working for the Future of Rural Queensland publications to support rural women’s leadership development. Each publication had a different theme, included case studies of rural women and how to guides and inspirational quotes. Each publication acted as a “mentor” and learning resource for women across Queensland. A state-wide network of women supported the development and review of the publications and launch events were held in locations across the state resulting in a celebration of women’s leadership and contribution.
The North Australian Pastoral Company (NAP) is one of Australia’s oldest and largest cattle companies, with a proud history of stewardship of cattle, the land and the future of a sustainable business. Jo Eady worked with NAP as a workplace advisor and leadership / communications specialist across 4 years. She facilitated leadership and team management programs and support for almost 200 staff across approx. 14 cattle stations, backgrounding properties and feedlots. She facilitated a number of Manager forums and also advised about effective communication strategy and processes to enhance employment and management experiences.
RuralScope was contracted as part of a collaborative team to develop a Producer Information Network for Queensland Sugar Limited. This involved extensive consultation with canegrower focus groups across the Eastern seaboard representing over 8000 growers and industry representatives. From this themes of interest were identified and created a foundation for an information platform. This resulted in the design and development of a digital information network to enhance producer understanding of market information. Co-design was the approach used in this project with end users providing input at each stage and being part of creating an outcome of value.
The de-regulation of the Australian dairy industry saw farmers concerned about business futures. RuralScope was contracted by the national R+D organisation to manage the design and facilitation of 65 business improvement workshops for over 1200 farmers regarding industry restructuring in Qld and northern NSW. RuralScope coordinated these efforts by establishing a network of farmer advocates. This resulted in a high turn out and take up of information shared. We also facilitated 10 professional advisor forums with 500+ attending. The Brisbane event saw 120 advisors including bankers, resellers, consultants and those in manufacturing attend. A human centred and co-design approach underpinned this program’s design and implementation.
The National Rural Women’s Coalition (NRWC) is a collaborative national voice for women living in rural, regional and remote Australia. RuralScope was engaged by the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet to consult with women’s groups and investigate the value of a ’single’ voice. The result was the NRWC established in 2002. The NRWC is now one of 6 National Women’s Alliances funded by the Australian government. The NRWC is a company limited by guarantee and is governed by a Board of Directors and is supported by a network of member organisations. This project tool approx. 18 months to complete with numerous consultative conversations and forums held across this time.
Contracted by the innovative research organization; Subtropical Dairy, RuralScope developed an interactive decision making process to assist dairy farming enterprises make effective whole of business decisions around the 3F’s – Farm, Family and Finance. It’s called the Dairy Decision Model. This involved the facilitation of planning processes and reviews with approx. 40 farming families across 18 months. The success of this led to the creation of a self access digital tool and guide giving farming families the opportunity to use the tool independently and inclusive of the whole family and where relevant farm business workforce. From this research, trialing and take up, the Dairy Decision Model was commercialised.
Reviewing and evaluating projects – investment, outputs and outcomes, human capital and influence, change and impact are part of best practice in leading effective projects. RuralScope is engaged by clients to independently and hence objectively provide input upfront to project planning. This includes suggestions regarding monitoring, review and evaluation including criteria and establishment of desired outcomes – real and stretch. We then facilitate using both formative and summative activities. We enjoy working in the impact space and using a range of tactics from online surveys to small group and individual interviews etc to test, assess and evaluate impact. We also provide data collection, analysis and reporting services.
Many membership-based organisations operate across Australia’s agricultural, rural and regional sectors. RuralScope has been and is engaged by a diverse client base including Cotton Australia, AgForce Queensland, AUSVEG, a major hospital and health service and Gold Coast City Council to independently consult with members / users. This involves understanding the intent of the assignment and development and facilitation of activities to gain authentic rich feedback and input. We are skilled at using face to face and online methodologies. During drought we mobilised a team at short notice to make calls to 1200 growers over a two week period. Quantitative and qualitative results are then analysed and presented to support strategic decision making.