The times are definitely changing and I am the first to admit that it can become overwhelming when I think about all the things that need to get done at our barn daily. I was talking to someone the other day and she was telling me about a huge mega boarding stable down south that has a market and shopping center for it's employees to get what they need for groceries. We started talking about barns that offer cameras in each stall for the boarders to be able to watch their horses at all times when they are at home and free Wifi when they are at the barn. What is coming next...A "Smart Barn" and a Starbucks in every lounge! What has happened to the quiet and peace that a barn is supposed to offer and be? Isn't a barn supposed to take us back to a simpler time long ago and refresh our senses and emotions?
I may sound old fashioned but I still love a barn that is simple and down to earth. I love to be able to hear the horses munch on their hay and the sounds of hooves coming down the aisle way. Now don't get me wrong, I love having perks and we have a few in our barn also but if it takes away from what horses and being around them is all about then I would rather not have it. Yes I am always looking for ways to make the job easier and more efficient and I believe that is smart but I do not want a "Smart barn" where everything is plugged into the internet and a computer tells me how much to feed each horse and alarms me when I have changed something without putting it into the computer first. This may seem crazy but it is happening and people are losing some of the most important skills and rewarding parts of running a barn. The hands on stuff that helps you grow and learn each day and gives you an unparalleled sense of knowledge of the individual horses you are taking care of.
Yes I might sound like I am talking about something out of "George Jetson" for all you older people who remember the cartoon but in many ways that is how our lives have become. Today I want to encourage you to keep your barn simple and down to earth. Let it be the one place where your clients can go and have a quiet harmonious and peaceful time with their beloved horse and forget about the craziness of the day they just had.
There is nothing wrong with having Wifi in your barn, after all I use my smart phone all the time in the barn. I am just saying to keep it simple and remember that the horses and clients don't need a Smart Barn they need you. Don't lose touch with what it takes to care for these incredible horses we have been blessed with.
If you are new to my blog, then welcome! I wrote my newest book to give you an in-depth look into the business of boarding horses and all that it entails. If you are boarding horses or are planning on it, please check out, "A Step By Step Guide To Starting And Running A Successful Horse Boarding Business." It is a very comprehensive book on boarding horses and covers every part of it from building your barn or stable to solid barn management. I wrote this book because I realized there is an information gap when it comes to this subject and my goal is to help others so they don't make all the mistakes I made when we first opened our boarding facility. I want you to be prepared for the crazy and wonderful new career you are going into.
Wishing you many blessings in our horse business, Sheri Grunska