While Masters of the Pork Industry have unique stories, all share many qualities — humble achievers, thoughtful leaders, agents of change, innovators — just to name a few. The class of 2018 embraces the ability to get over themselves and work toward inspiring others on their way.
Even though their leadership style, career journey and experiences vary, they are wonderful examples of how to motivate others, challenging them to do what is right for pigs, people and planet. Standout leaders know success is not about actual money earned but working toward something bigger than themselves by putting others first.
Reading through their stories, it is easy to see they do share some habits all of us should adopt.
1. Courageously face challenges with honesty. Instead of backing down from the struggling, challenging times, the Masters do not sweep problems under the rug. They face them head-on by evaluating them truthfully and then work with their team to overcome them positively.
2. Win trust. Whether you are running a business or working with clients, people do business with people they trust. Gaining trust simply comes down to showing people you care. You are genuinely interested in their success and make decisions that are right for the entire team, not themselves.
3. Be real. You will never fool anyone if you are pretending to be someone you are not. Strong leaders welcome their personal quirks, utilizing their strengths and talents to develop their leadership style.
4. Gain respect. Walk your talk. Leaders cannot only talk about those values but also must lead by those values every day. When you demonstrate the traits you want to see in team members, then you will earn the respect of others around you.
5. Keep learning. Good leaders commit to a life of learning. The day you stop asking questions, close your mind to new ideas and quit seeking information is the day your business or team fails. Good leaders know innovation and new approaches come from different places, unusual partnerships and, sometimes, the most unlikely characters.
In this gallery, you will find the stories of the 2018 Masters of the Pork Industry. A special handpicked group of pork industry leaders who leave their footprint in the pork industry.