Thursday, October 4, 2012

Tell Your Story

 Recently I came across a story titled "The Danger of Dihydrogen Monoxide". For those of you that laugh at the title, you may already know what Dihydrogen Monoxide is. Or you've already read the article. For those of you that are still confused, let me explain. A woman recently posted a YouTube video asking people to sign a petition to ban a chemical compound called Dihydrogen Monoxide. What the lady didn't explain however was that this "chemical compound" is actually water. This petition went on to get hundreds of signatures. All of which came from individuals who didn't ask any questions. Through this experiment we can see that by minor alterations and the addition of urgency in your message, we can get people behind us.

As I read this article I thought about how important it is to tell our story as agriculturists. On September 21st the Minnesota State FFA Officers visited Farm Bureau. We had the opportunity to meet with some executives from Farm Bureau as well as agricultural communicators from agricultural businesses from across Minnesota. While there, we did just that. Mrs. Kristin Harner (Public Relation Director) and Mr. Kevin Paap (Farm Bureau President) spent the morning sharing with us the importance of telling our story and also letting us practice answering commonly asked questions. Mr. Paap shared a quote with us that day that still rings true. The quote was,

"If you're not at the table, you'll be on the menu."

This couldn't be more true in our role as agriculturists. We must do our part in engaging the public in conversation about agriculture and the issues we are currently facing within it. The "FFA Day at the Capitol" is a perfect way to engage legislators in conversation and persuade their opinion but there are many other opportunities as well. School board meetings, school assemblies, newspaper articles, blog posts, Facebook, Twitter, and even YouTube are all great resources we can use to Tell our Story! After all, if we don't tell our story, somebody else will.

Stationed By the Rising Sun,

Shawna Conrad
MN FFA President

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