Steve and Derek Whitesides
March 29, 2016

Build A Team of Advisors To Aid Your Success

 |  By: Anna-Lisa Laca

Steve and Derek Whitesides lean on a team of advisers, something their business has done since the early days. The “dream team” they think all dairymen should employ includes a veterinarian, nutritionist, banker, accountant, attorney, agronomist and top-notch employees.

Aligning yourself with smart advisers is an essential business move especially when it comes to succession planning, says Lance Woodbury, a family business consultant from Garden City, Kan., and member of the Farm Journal Legacy Project team of advisers.

“Good advisers will take your payment as an obligation to do everything in their power to move you forward,” Woodbury says.
Steve credits the financial success of his business to a great working relationship between his attorneys and accountant who encouraged him to have a succession plan in place from the beginning. As a result, everyone involved in the business has benefited.

“I didn’t know it would at the time,” Whitesides says. “But granting my children some profit shares from the beginning has been financially beneficial for them and has provided tax benefits for us.”

Woodbury says good advisers won’t tell you what to do but will give you options that will work well.

“They can help you save hundreds of thousands of dollars in estate or income taxes, improve relationships, avoid legal problems and help the business survive one or more generational transitions,” he says.