Three-Part Webinar Series Offered to Dairy Team Facilitators

The FREE Online Series Is Approved for Three Hours of RACE Continuing Education Credits

As dairy team facilitators work to practice social distance amidst COVID-19 and use virtual communication to guide their clients, the Center for Dairy Excellence is offering a three-part webinar series. The continuing education series, titled “Bridging the Gap: Maximizing Team Dynamics,” will no longer be an in-person meeting. Now in virtual format, the webinars will take place on April 15, April 22 and April 29. Registration costs have been waived, and access to the entire three-part series is free.

The webinars will feature three speakers with a wide range of expertise in the dairy industry and beyond. Facilitators will learn how to guide their dairy clients through difficult discussions and challenging team dynamics.

“Learning how to successfully facilitate difficult discussions and help dairy teams resolve conflict is one of the most impactful skills a facilitator can master, especially when the dairy industry is faced with so much uncertainty and unprecedented changes in the marketplace,” said Rob Goodling of the Penn State Extension Dairy Team. “As producers search for ways to manage change on their dairies, facilitators are a key resource in helping them set goals, communicate, and strengthen team dynamics.”

View the webinar series schedule:

  • Wed. April 15 from 10-11:30 a.m. “Facilitation Basics” with Rob Goodling. Learn about the rules of meeting, treating others with respect, avoiding disruptions, setting goals and objectives, handling information flow, and engaging producers to ensure openness, trust and honesty.
  • Wed. April 22 from 10-11:30 a.m. – “Understanding Change Management” with Dr. Charles Gardner. Understand the different types of people who could be on teams, discuss the common resistance to make changes, and how to navigate team discussions around change.
  • Wed. April 29 from 10 a.m. to noon – “Conflict Resolution and Difficult Team Dynamics” with Rob Skacel. Master ways to facilitate discussions to help resolve conflicts and strengthen team dynamics.

The webinar series has been approved for three hours of continuing education credit in jurisdictions that recognize American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) Registry of Approved Continuing Education.

Rob Goodling from the Penn State Extension Dairy Team will speak about facilitation basics, using his experience working with farms on data management and record keeping. Before joining Penn State Extension, Goodling worked for the Animal Improvement Programs Laboratory, an ARS-USDA office responsible for dairy cattle genetic evaluations and selection research.

Dr. Charles Gardner will help facilitators understand change management. Gardner currently works with the Center for Dairy Excellence to help producers transition assets and other aspects of herd management. Throughout his career, Gardner has served as director of the Agway TSPF Heifer Program and worked at Cargill Animal Nutrition to improve animal and financial performance.

Rob Skacel, a licensed psychologist with senior executive experience at True Edge Performance Solutions, will discuss conflict resolution and navigating difficult team dynamics. Skacel has held senior leadership positions in sizeable for-profit and non-profit organizations, where his responsibilities have focused on performance improvement and organizational development.

Registration is free for the entire three-part series.