#RangelandWednesday: The Lay of the Land

This week was a slow week. On June 15, the weather was calm all day and the wind did not pick up at all, so I was able to finish up several fields and eventually start on the last riparian area.

On June 16, the weather consisted of high winds and dark cloudy skies, which was consistent for the next two days. I was not able to help in the fields due to high amounts of rain, unless it was with cattle—which was a new experience.

Being around cattle is a new experience.

On June 19, the weather finally cleared up and I was able to spray. This time spraying was more of a learning experience, since Paul from Lander Weed & Pest came up and was able to increase our pesticide strength. Paul will be helping Larry and I off-and-on for the next two weeks.

This week was a learning experience as usual. I figured out Larry’s process on how he runs his ranch, what I should be doing when not spraying and how he wants me to spray. What I mean by this is, I was always confused on what Larry wanted me to do since he is used to communicating with Michael (current ranch hand). I figured out that as long as I am being helpful and remembering tasks Larry has given me in the past that have not been completed, he is happy with the work I am doing.

There are many learning opportunities in this internship.

Due to some of the communication opportunities and confusion in exact tasks to be done and task execution, I have had the opportunity to work on developing interpersonal skills as well.  As I am building relationships with Larry, I am learning how to advocate for myself until I have clarity in what he wants and push to set expectations so there is less confusion on my part—and less frustration on his.

I am also learning how to have professional conversations when our expectations do not align—though those conversations may be difficult.  Finally, I am learning to develop multi-generational relationships when there is a fundamental difference in understanding each other and pressing in until we can align.

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