Putting the plan to work in LivePlan and on the farm
Starting with 55 acres, the Overmans added another nine in 2021, growing the entire property to 64 acres. During this time, the farm's 4,000 lavender plants reached harvest size. The real work begins when they're ready to be transplanted to the actual fields. Larry plans to lay the two acres of plants in curved rows to accommodate walking and seating for a main events pavilion.
“The rows of lavender will be in an arc but spaced for seating with paths up the middle,” explains Larry. “The pavilion will be like a wall-less chapel for weddings, concerts, whatever we want to do there.”
“We appreciate each other's strengths and come together on a common ground for the weaknesses.”
Lavender Kisses has also welcomed its first head of livestock, including three Scottish Highland cattle, four Nigerian dwarf goats, and four dogs. From veterinary check-ins and mowing that can take eight hours to making lavender soap and shipping orders—the Overmans put in full days, every day. With their business plan by their side, they're prepared to segment, manage, and delegate tasks.
“We appreciate each other's strengths and come together on a common ground for the weaknesses,” says Larry. He adds that when they're ready, they'll bring someone on who can take on the tasks they prefer to delegate.
“Dividing and conquering is ideal sometimes,” explains Stacie. “I'll tell him to get in the tractor while I handle something else. It's tough when we're two leaders, and neither of you is a follower.”
By having their business plan in LivePlan, the Overmans can set milestones based on their short-term and long-term goals. As they expand the farm's offerings, they will purchase materials, design spaces, and hire additional staff. Larry and Stacie will also forecast the net impact of costs on the bottom line and check that against the projected revenues for new products at services.
Their business plan also guides them through developing and creating more lavender-focused products, such as lavender essential oils. In addition to their line of custom lavender soaps, for the spring of 2022, the Overmans will also begin marketing goat milk soaps made with milk from the Nigerian dwarf goats at the farm.
As they add more product lines and work out the supplies needed to maintain supply, LivePlan can help the Overmans evaluate sales, soap ingredients, and seasonality. That way, they can better plan special edition or limited edition products and packages, discontinue products or product lines that don't perform or map out a path to expanding production on their most popular soaps.
Larry and Stacie can also examine the impact on revenues and profits from different scenarios, such as what they might expect for a busy holiday season or combining an event on the farm with product sales. Products, though, are just the beginning.