This week, I traveled to the Cattle Industry Convention #CIC14 and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association #NCBA @beefusa in Nashville. There are 7500 cattlemen and women pre-registered for the convention from around the globe, and they estimate another 1000 attend with late registration. This isn’t just a US convention, but folks from across the world come to this. Needless to say, it’s a pretty big deal. The leadership at the convention is enormous. This was my first convention, and whew what an experience it was!
One of the main reasons I attended was being accepted into the prestigious King Ranch Institute of Ranch Management inaugural Beef Scholars program. This program selected 20 young industry leaders with the goal of developing their strong leadership skills into something extraordinary. This is a two year program, and we had our first of many seminars. I am truly humbled to be part of this.
I was lucky enough to have my best friend (the hubby!) along with me during the trip. He isn’t able to get away from the ranch very often, so when I was making flight reservations and he said to get him a ticket, I was thrilled! It was a fun trip but I’m excited to get home and see my little man.
We were invited to the NCBA-PAC (Political Action Committee) VIP Jack Daniels Whiskey tasting reception and live auction while we were there. It was an interesting experience to find out how they still their different whiskeys and also taste them. I’ve been to a wine tasting but never a whiskey tasting. A rather unique evening!
The trade show reception was an awesome time also! Lots of very tasty beef sponsored by Certified Angus Beef (CAB), live music and of course world class networking. Everything that defines the cattle industry all under one roof with the major players right there.
The 2014 convention is held at the Gaylord Opryland resort. I really only have one word to describe it, WOW! An amazing place. The building itself amasses 54 acres, and hosts restaurants, bars, thousands of hotel rooms and the convention center. Even though 8500+ were attending you wouldn’t know it with how enormous the building is. The complex sits on around 130 acres. Truly an amazing experience!
Troy and I were able to play tourists a little bit and experienced the nightlife in downtown Nashville and the Grand Ole Opry House.
As part of the Beef Scholars program, we have two seminars this year at the King Ranch Institute in Kingsville, TX and I look forward to traveling to south Texas to the historic King Ranch.
One of the points during the seminar this week I have thought quite often about is the question, “Are leaders born or made?” Some can argue that certain people have the genetic makeup to become great leaders. But I truly believe leadership in life is what you want to make of it. Instead of dwelling on a weakness, develop your strengths into something extraordinary. And that is exactly what NCBA and the King Ranch Institute are doing by investing in 20 young leaders, preparing for the future of industry leadership.
Below are a few snapshots of the past few days. The first pic is one of my fellow King Ranch Institute classmates, Travis, at the KRIRM booth at the trade show. He is pictured with one of the professors in the KRIRM