Hiring Horse Business Employees

Most of us have been on one side of the interview process—in the chair across from the hiring manager—but sitting in the other chair is a whole different ball game. Interviewing potential horse business employees might sound like a cakewalk, but you must treat this process as more than a formality.

You’ve already perused the candidate’s application or resume, but now you have to meet with him or her face-to-face. This is not only an opportunity to evaluate the applicant, but also to see how you might work together.

Make no mistake: Interviews are two-sided. You are interviewing the candidate while he or she interviews you.

I’ve already given you sample interview questions in past articles, so now I want to focus on the purpose and mission of the interview. What do you hope to accomplish? And how can you best serve your horse business as well as the candidate?

Let’s start with some truths:

Truth #1: Interviewees Lie to Get Jobs

Not all, certainly, but some job applicants will tell you what they think you want to hear. They might exaggerate their experience or claim awards or certifications they never actually received. This is a serious problem for the horse business owner because an applicant’s omission or lie can lead to safety hazards.

This means that horse business owners must rely on two things during an interview: 1) Facts they can verify later; and 2) Intuition. The first is easy to identify, while the second takes experience and confidence.

Look for subtle tells that might indicate an interviewee is lying, such as fidgeting with his hands or over-qualifying a statement. But most important, listen to what your gut is telling you. Are you comfortable with this person? Do you trust him or her?

Later, you can research the applicant if you think he or she might be a good fit. This might mean checking references or contacting organizations from which he or she might have received certification or awards.

Truth #2: The Interview is About the Applicant, Too

This means that you need to decide if the candidate is a good fit for the position and if the position will effectively utilize the candidate’s strengths.

You don’t want to hire an over-qualified professional for an entry-level position in which he or she might grow frustrated. This leads to high turnover in the horse business, which is never a good thing.

Determine whether the candidate will be a good fit for the culture and atmosphere at your barn. Will he fit in with other employees? Can you see her thriving in this position?

Make sure the job description and title are clear to the applicant. Go over his or her main responsibilities and invite questions after every segment of the interview. Don’t make your decision based exclusively on what you want from the candidate; think as well about what the candidate will expect from you.

Truth #3: Interviewers Lie to Attract Employees

Yes, there are two sides to the coin. If you expect honesty from the equestrian professionals you interview, it is extremely important that you offer that same honesty in return.

This means giving him or her the facts regarding the job. Don’t embellish benefits or try to make the position more attractive than it really is. The applicant will find out you lied and will probably quit anyway.

Be completely truthful about compensation, working conditions, responsibilities, and benefits. Don’t hold back any of the details and don’t give the candidate the wrong impression. This will come back to bite you.

Truth #4: There is No Right Way to Conduct an Interview

Every horse business owner has a different interview style, which is perfectly fine. You’ll find your rhythm and grow more comfortable with this process as time goes on.

If you prefer an informal interview, meet in a place where you are comfortable, such as the barn office or rec area. If you don’t like to take notes during interviews, leave the pen and notepad in your drawer.

There are no right answers, as you’ll soon discover, and interviews are most successful when both parties are themselves. Try not to over-think it or your nervousness will impede the interview process.


Full Board Versus Partial Board for the Horse Business

Diversification is the name of the game in the horse business. The more options you can offer potential clients, the better your chances of scoring new customers. One example of this is offering both full board and partial board.

Full Board

The general guideline for full board is that the equestrian facility takes over care of the horse to such a degree that the owner can be absent for several days (or even weeks or months) without any detriment to the animal. In other words, the barn is responsible for meeting all the horse’s needs.

This includes feeding, providing supplements, mucking the horse’s stall, turning the horse out as appropriate, and calling veterinarians or farriers as needed. Full board is the more expensive of the two and therefore provides a higher quality of service for the animal and the client.

Partial Board

There are many different arrangements for partial board. In most cases, a partial boarding agreement means that the horse’s owner pays the facility owner for certain services and takes care of the rest himself. It’s less expensive because the barn doesn’t have to do as much work.

For example, partial board might include shelter, food, and water, but none of the human-equine interaction. In other words, the horse owner is responsible for feeding the animal, making sure his water buckets are filled, turning him out, and mucking his stall.

Pasture board is a form of partial board in which the horse is housed in a paddock or pasture (open land) rather than a barn or stable. In most cases, the horse is provided with a lean-to-type shelter in which to escape inclement weather.

Should You Offer Both?

Offering both full board and partial board is somewhat of an inconvenience to the horse business owner. For one thing, billing practices are less straight-forward since you have to calculate what clients owe based on the services they use.

Furthermore, full board allows horse business owners to ensure the health and safety of all their equine clients. In a partial board situation, it is possible for a horse owner to neglect his horse, which can result in liability issues for the equestrian facility.

If you’re going to offer partial board as an alternative to full board, make sure your contract is very clear. Spell out exactly how much is owed and when, and which services are covered under the agreement. You must also specify a hold-harmless clause that requires the horse owner to take full responsibility for those services you aren’t contracted to perform.

Sound complicated? It is. But especially in poor economic climates, many people are having trouble paying the high prices associated with full board. If you can give clients a break by allowing them a discount on boarding if they perform some of the work, you might retain clients you would otherwise lose.

What do you think? Is partial board a good idea? What services do you offer through your horse business?


Combining Services in the Horse Business

One of the latest crazes in the insurance industry is insurance bundles. That is, you purchase your car and homeowner’s insurance from the same company, and you get a discount on both.

This is good for the consumer because he pays less for two things he needs anyway. And it’s good for the insurance company because they get twice the business from the same customer. Everybody wins.

So why aren’t you applying service combinations to your horse business? It works for more than just the insurance industry. Do you order cable and Internet service from the same communications company? Do you buy paper towels in bulk from Sam’s Club or Costco? You can find examples of this “bundling” fad just about everywhere.

It’s the same concept as upselling in the retail market. When you walk into Macy’s and buy a sweater, the sales associate might direct your attention to a rack of gloves that would match the sweater. And perhaps a belt. And maybe a pair of socks. This is upselling.

There are two ways to combine services in the horse industry:

Bundle related services together. For example, you might offer a package horse training services that includes three days of one-hour training sessions in addition to a Saturday lesson with the owner on the horse. Or you might offer a riding lesson package for a three-day event rider that includes two jumping lessons and one dressage lesson per week.

Bundle the same services over a period of time. Offer a 5 percent discount when students pay for each month of lessons up-front. This increases your chances of getting paid on time and will also allow you to invest that money more quickly.

There are endless ways in which you can combine services to make more money and get paid more regularly. Look at your own service offerings and see if you can’t combine one or more to make them more enticing to clients.


7 Things Stable Managers Should Never Say

1. “Feeding can wait.” Horses require consistency in their feeding schedules. If they are fed too late or too early, the resulting irritation can cause colic and a host of other problems. When you’re managing a stable, make sure feeding schedules are a top priority.

Little Tip: Ask for an alternate feeder volunteer. It might be an employee, a client, or a friend who can rush to the barn if the person responsible for feeding is somehow delayed. This way, horses are always fed on time.

2. “Just get the poop.” One of the most common stable management problems I encounter is barn staff members who don’t know how to properly clean a stall. Either they weren’t taught correctly or they aren’t properly supervised. In either case, the stable manager has dropped the ball.

Little Tip: Take the time to teach each new employee the proper way to clean a stall, including both urine and feces. Make sure employees know that thorough stall cleaning is extremely important to you, and that slacking off can lead to serious consequences.

3. “Just stick him in any stall/paddock.” Horses are stalled or turned out in certain areas for a reason. For example, if two horses don’t get along, they need to be kept in separate paddocks or stalls for safety reasons. Putting horses in stalls or paddocks different from the ones to which they’ve been assigned can cause confusion and even spread disease.

Little Tip: Make sure horses are always put in the stalls, paddocks, or pastures they are used to. This creates a sense of continuity and avoids potential accidents. Make changes only after careful thought.

4. “Your horse needs supplements?” It is the stable manager’s job to know everything she can about the horses for whom she cares. This means learning about feeding schedules, supplement needs, behavioral tendencies, and other issues. Failing to ask about these things can result in injuries, illnesses, and more.

Little Tip: Have your boarders fill out an equine evaluation so you’ll have all the important information. This way, if you discover you don’t know something, it’s because the owner failed to tell you, not because you were negligent.

5. “I figured he didn’t need a vet.” This goes for the farrier, too. It is the job of a stable manager to call appropriate professionals if a problem arises at the barn. This should be part of your boarding contract, which should also require the owner of the horse to foot the bill. Better safe than sorry.

Little Tip: Err on the side of the caution and call the vet or farrier if something goes wrong with a horse. Whether it’s a thrown shoe or a case of colic, it’s better to get the opinion of a pro than to make a (wrong) judgment call.

6. “I let someone else ride your horse. You don’t mind, do you?” It is never appropriate for a stable manager or other horse business employee to allow someone to ride a boarder’s horse. I’ve seen it happen before, and lawsuits are often the unintended result.

Little Tip: If you want to use a boarder’s horse for lessons or some other person, get permission in writing. Not only is doing otherwise bad manners, but it is also a liability nightmare.

7. “Nobody steals around here.” You can’t know this for a fact, which is why barn security should take center stage. A stable manager is responsible for keeping clients’ horses and equipment safe, to the best of his or her ability. This doesn’t mean you can stop every loss, but you should take steps to prevent it.

Little Tip: Start a barn security program at your facility. Get better locks for the tack room, install a controlled-access gate, or ask the neighborhood constable to send a patrol car by a couple times each night. All of these small efforts will pay off big time in the long run.


7 Things Riding Instructors Should Never Say

1. “You aren’t good enough.” Each of your students will have a unique set of strengths and weaknesses. Your job is to appreciate your students’ strengths and help them work on their weaknesses, not to tear them down.

There is always a better way to phrase constructive criticism, and with every comment you make, focus on providing advice your student can actually use.

Say Instead: “We really need to work on your position in the saddle before you’re ready to try that. It’s important for you to focus on keeping your eyes up and your heels down.”

2. “Just let me take this call.” As a riding instructor, your attention should be 100 percent focused on your students from the time they arrive until they get in the car to go home. Don’t answer your cell phone or chat with other employees when you’re supposed to be preparing for, teaching, or cleaning up after a lesson.

Not only is this unprofessional, but it is also a safety risk. If you’re concentrating on the person who’s just called your cell, you won’t be able to react as quickly if one of your students gets in trouble.

Say Instead: “Just let me put my phone on vibrate.”

3. “Why can’t you be more like Ashley?” Never compare one of your students to another, whether to their face or to someone else. It’s bad manners, and it leaves students feeling like they are inadequate. Each of your students is imbued with a set of natural gifts, and that is the raw material you need to work with.

You can, however, use exemplary students as examples. Phrase it in such a way that you are offering useful guidance rather than criticism or insult.

Say Instead: “See how Ashley keeps her eyes on the horizon? Try that over your next jump.”

4. “If you don’t get it this time, the lesson is over.” It is not a riding instructor’s job to threaten her students. Don’t use fear to get results; instead, rely on encouragement and other forms of positive motivation. Remember that your students are clients as well, and if you issue threats all the time, they’ll find somewhere else to go.

You’ve probably noticed a theme in this article: Always impart some type of wisdom. Whether you’re offering criticism or praise, make sure you’re offering something of value to the student.

Say Instead: “Try it again, and this time sink your weight into your outside heel a little more to maintain balance.”

5. “But this is so easy!” Maybe it was easy for you to learn, and perhaps most students catch on quickly, but everyone learns at a different speed. Riding instructors must respect this fact if they want to give their students the best lessons possible.

Never demeanor student or make him or her feel stupid or inferior. Low self esteem will lead to more difficulty in the saddle, so you’re only working against yourself by using this tact.

Say Instead: “Go again, with a little less pressure on the reins. Don’t worry, you’ll pick it up!”

6. “Here’s what you did wrong.” Kids and adults are talked at enough during the day: by teachers, bosses, parents, and friends. So much so that they turn a deaf ear toward it. Riding instructors can increase their efficiency and effectiveness by engaging students in a conversation.

Rather than picking apart a rider’s performance, talk about it. Ask the rider to think for him or herself. When you make the effort to do this, students remember their lessons much longer.

Say Instead: “What do you think went wrong there?”

7. “Just do it.” You’d be surprised how often I hear this from riding instructors, and it completely defeats the purpose of riding lessons. When your students ask “why” or “how come,” they’re seeking answers—answers you need to provide.

Say Instead: Either the answer to the question or, “I’m not sure why we do that, but I’ll find the answer and tell you next week.”


7 Things Horse Trainers Should Never Say

1. “Your horse is the devil.” You’d be surprised how often I’ve heard this from the mouths of horse trainers, and it’s just not a good idea. Your clients don’t want to hear that their horses are demons on hooves, and the truth is no horse deserves this label.

Horse trainers must decide, before entering this profession, that all horses are redeemable. You must approach each project with a positive attitude and the full intention of delivering whatever changes you have promised the client.

Say Instead: “We’ve hit a few snags in the training process. Your horse is sometimes resistant, which is usually evidence of fear. We’ll keep working on it.”

2. “He did okay.” When a client asks you about a horse training session, you’d better be prepared to give her a comprehensive overview of your process and the results. Clients want to know, in detail, how their horses are progressing. Generalizations and blanket statements need not apply.

This doesn’t mean you have to give an hour-long monologue about every step the horse took during your session. But it does mean describing how you approached the problem, the horse’s response to your techniques, and your goals for the next session.

Say Instead: “I’m really pleased with the progress.” Then describe what happened. At length.

3. “My assistant tells me….” If you are hired as a horse trainer, you’d better be the one doing the training. Period. You’ve been hired for your expertise, your experience, and your abilities, and your clients shouldn’t have to settle for your assistant. This is just bad business.

The only exception is when you receive permission from your client beforehand, in writing. For example, maybe you run a big horse training business and your assistants work with the horses every other day. This is acceptable, but only if your methods are clear in advance.

Say Instead: There is no alternative except, “When I worked with your horse today…”

4. “Don’t ride your horse.” This is becoming a common request among horse trainers who are afraid that clients will “screw up” their hard work. It won’t happen, and telling clients not to ride their horses is a mistake.

First, it’s an unreasonable request. Your client isn’t paying for your horse training services so he can look at his horse; he’s paying you so he’ll have a better equine partner.

Say Instead: “Why don’t we schedule a riding lesson for the day after our training session so I can work with you on what your horse has learned.”

5. “I think reining would be a better fit.” It is difficult for some riding instructors to separate themselves from their clients. They want to mold their human clients into whatever they think would be best for the horse. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work.

If your client wants a cutting horse, you either need to turn the animal into a cutting horse or decline the project. It’s that simple. All horses have limitations, but it isn’t your job to tell the client what he or she should do with the animal.

Say Instead: “If you’re sure you want to cut on this horse, I think another trainer would be a better fit.”

6. “He needs at least another month of training.” That statement might be true, but it’s up to the client to decide for himself. In your urgency to secure another contract (and therefore more money), you might be tempted to push your clients toward buying more services from you. This is a bad move.

Your job as a horse trainer is to do the best you can with the time you have. Set goals and make sure you achieve them. If your client is pleased with the results, he will hire you on for another month because he sees that you deliver value.

Say Instead: “If you would like another month of training, we can nail that counter canter and increase the precision on rollbacks.”

7. “Your last trainer really screwed up.” Badmouthing another horse trainer is poor sportsmanship. We all have different ideas of what works and what doesn’t, and it might be true that your client’s last trainer made mistakes. But it isn’t your job to point them out.

Disparaging other horse trainers will make you look petty and self-important. It also means equestrian professionals will be hesitant to work with you in the future—and to give you referrals. Follow your mother’s advice and avoid saying anything if you can’t say something positive.

Say Instead: “I work a little bit differently, but I’ll keep you in the loop and we’ll figure out the best methods to achieve the results you want.”


Why Horse Trainers Should Never Make Guarantees

Guarantees are common in the business world. Entrepreneurs know that customers are more likely to buy when they feel their purchase is secure. Guarantees provide that security.

But not if you’re a horse trainer. In this segment of the horse business, guarantees will ruin your reputation, destroy your credibility, and probably leave you penniless.

Why Guarantees Usually Work

Let’s say you’re in the market for a new coffee maker. The old one went kaput, and you can’t make it through the day without your caffeine fix. (Believe me, I can relate.)

So you hop on the Internet and start searching for a replacement. You stumble across a brand new coffee maker that is making waves in the world of java, though it’s more expensive than your average percolater. You scroll down to the bottom of the page and you see the sentence that puts all your fears to rest: “Guaranteed for 90 days or your money back.”

You know, if you put down the money for this revolutionary coffee maker, you’ll be able to return it for a full refund. Should it fail to meet your expectations in any way, you won’t suffer for the purchase. Done deal.

Why Guarantees Don’t Work for Horse Trainers

In the case of the coffee pot, the manufacturers are guaranteeing a machine. One they have (hopefully) tested and tweaked and improved upon for several months. A machine is predictable; absent a defect in the craftsmanship, it will perform as expected.

Horses, as you well know, are not machines. Each animal is a unique individual who performs according to his own personality and experiences. There is absolutely no way to predict how a particular horse will respond to training, even with the most experienced, talented trainer.


Making guarantees in horse training is tantamount to defrauding your customers. You take their money based on a contract that can’t exist: In exchange for their financial investment, you promise to elicit a specific result from the horse. Not possible.

You cannot possibly guarantee, for example, that a horse will stop bucking after 30 days of training. Perhaps you’ve never had a horse persist with that nasty habit beyond 30 days, but eventually you will find one. And even if you make good on your guarantee, you’re still running an awfully big risk.

And setting up your customers for disappointment.

What You Can Guarantee

Despite all this, there are a few things you can guarantee in the horse training business. You can guarantee that:

You’ll show up on specific days, at specific times, to work the horse.

No one will ever mistreat, abuse, or neglect the animal while he is in your care.

You will make every effort to achieve the client’s desired outcome.

The horse will be trained with gentle, non-aggressive methods.

See the difference? You can guarantee your part in the horse training equation, but you cannot guarantee the horse’s response to your efforts. Keep that in mind.


What’s Included in Your Horse Training Fee?

Horse training sounds pretty simple, right? People hire you to work with their horses, you solve the animals’ problems, and you get paid for your effort. No problem.

Except it is. What you may not realize is that your clients have expectations, and those expectations might have nothing to do with what you really offer. Unless you sit down with your clients and tell them, step by step, what you do, misunderstandings will eventually put the kibosh on your horse business.

So what’s the solution? Decide exactly what’s included in your horse training program.

How often will you work with the horse in training? Will you prepare the horse for rides yourself? Will you bathe the horse? Groom him? Check him over for illness and/or injury? Oversee his feeding schedule? Provide regular progress reports? Are you available to the owner to answer questions by phone, via e-mail, or in person?

If you ask three people what they expect to get out of a horse training program, you’ll get three different responses. This is why it’s so important not only to tell your clients what they will receive for their money, but also put it in writing in their contract.

Include how much you charge for horse training, travel (if applicable), and any incidental expenses. For example, if you have to give the horse a dose of Bute after a stress injury, how will you be compensated for that?

And you might want to go as far as stating what you don’t include in your horse training fee. Things you either won’t do or things you charge extra for. These might include hand walking, blanketing, administering medication, and more.

So before you start a horse business, decide exactly what is included in your horse training fee. It will save you plenty of headaches, guaranteed.


What do your students want to learn?

Great riding instructors ask their students questions. They solicit feedback on future riding lessons so they can constantly improve their performance. Most important, they teach what their students want to learn.

You’d be surprised how often riding instructors follow a pre-conceived formula in each of the lessons they teach. They know what has worked for them in the past—the logical progression of learning how to ride—and that formula never varies from one class to the next.

This is boring. It’s also bad for your horse business.

Teaching riding lessons is not like teaching algebra or world history. There is no set curriculum, and most of your students probably set through enough lectures every weekday. They come to riding lessons to be challenged and to participate in an activity they love.

Your job is to meet their needs—whatever those needs might be.

Some students want to learn as fast as they can so they can start their careers as professional riders. Others are content to learn at a more leisurely pace because they have no ambition when it comes to horses; they just love to ride.

Your job as a riding instructor is threefold:

Find out what your students want to learn.
Teach them what they want to know.
Make sure they are safe.

That third requirement imposes a few boundaries on the first two. Yes, you need to figure out what your students want to learn in riding lessons, but first you must give them the tools to learn what they want.

Scenario 1

Emily has been taking riding lessons for three weeks now. During her fourth lesson, she expresses a desire to canter. She’s still a little wobbly at the trot and she hasn’t fully grasped the concept of posting, but she’s adamant about that canter. She wants to go fast!

Riding Instructor’s Response: You know that Emily is not yet ready to canter, so you tell her she needs to wait until she masters the walk and trot. However, you concentrate more on seat and balance in her lessons because you recognize her desire to reach a higher level of mastery.

Scenario 2

Bobby is in his sixth month of taking riding lessons. Most of the other kids in his class have the same level of experience, and they’re all riding western. Suddenly, however, Bobby realizes he isn’t interested in barrel racing or reining or western pleasure. He wants to jump!

Riding Instructor’s Response: Because Bobby has established the basics of a western seat, he can choose the discipline he wants to ride with some authority. If you teach jumping lessons as well as western classics, it’s time to move him to a new class where he can learn the English seat and progress to jumping. If you teach only western, you’ll want to refer him to an English riding instructor.

See how that works?

It is important to let your students tell you what they want to learn, but it is more important to keep them safe. Your goal should be to solicit feedback while keeping your professional obligations in mind.


Top 20 Amenities for Horse Farms

The types of amenities a horse farm should provide depends on the clients that horse business serves. Clients who compete on a regular basis and ride expensive horses require different amenities from clients who trail ride every once in a while and consider their horses pets.

This isn’t an excuse for humbler facilities to slack off in terms of amenities, but it does help to create some perspective.

Particularly in a rough economy, it is important for horse business owners to up the ante in terms of how they serve their customers. Building or implementing new amenities will draw in new faces and allow you to compete at a higher level in the horse business.

Large, Well-Built Stalls. A stall is a horse’s home, and owners want to know their horses will have sufficient room to move around, as well as a clean, structurally sound place to live. Stall mats are a big plus.

Storage Space. From saddles and bridles to grooming equipment and chaps, horse farms should provide clients with secure storage space. It could be a box in front of the horse’s stall or a locker in the tack room. You might even offer additional storage space for a fee.

Adequate Barn Ventilation. A horse farm needs a barn that allows horses (and their owners) to breathe. This means plenty of windows as well as stall fans in hot summer months.

Individual Turn-Out. Group turn-out works for some horse farms, but individual paddocks keep horses from hurting one another. Horse owners also want their horses turned out for them on a daily basis (weather-permitting).

Customized Feed Program. If possible, horse farms should try to accommodate their clients’ horses’ needs. This means adding supplements and medications to grain as needed and feeding a grain that is compatible each horse’s dietary requirements.

Wash Stalls and/or Stocks. A stall is not a good place to hose a horse down after a long summer ride or to facilitate a veterinary examination. Wash stalls and stocks are easy to build and maintain.

Trails. You don’t need 200 acres of dedicated trails, but it is a good idea for horse farms to provide enough land so that clients can get out of the arena every once in a while. Even a big, open field is sufficient.

Outdoor Arena. Providing a place for horse owners to ride their animals is top on the list. It should be a large arena with appropriate footing for the disciplines in which your clients ride.

Indoor Arena. During inclement weather or hot, stuffy afternoons, clients still want to work their horses. An indoor arena is an invaluable amenity for horse farms.

Round Pen. Whether they’re training babies or lunging instead of riding, clients want an accessible, properly-outfitted round pen. A covered round pen is also a growing trend for nicer stables.

Place to Relax. A rec room or similar area is a great horse farm amenity, especially if your clients spend a lot of time at the barn. It’s a place for them to relax and recharge after a strenuous ride. Equip it with a restroom and perhaps a couple vending machines, and you’re golden.

24-Hour Security. Your clients want to know that their horses and equipment are safe when they’re not around. Security doesn’t mean an armed guard patrols your facility at night. It means that someone—you, for example—lives on the property.

Competition Program. Just because someone owns a horse doesn’t mean he owns a truck and trailer. If you have a competition program at your horse farm, you can haul clients to horse shows and save them the headache. It’s also good for building community and teamwork among clients.

Fly Spray System. This is particularly important in the southern states. A fly spray system means horse owners don’t have to run to the barn three times a day to spray their horses down.

Gated Access. A controlled-access security gate will not keep out determined intruders, but it does impose a small level of security. Not only that, but this type of horse farm amenity increases the overall sophistication of your facility.

Horse Trailer Parking. Your horse business will become more attractive to serious horse owners if you provide them space in which to park their trailers. This way, they don’t have to pay for trailer storage elsewhere.

Equestrian Professionals on Staff. Horse trainers, riding instructors, and other equestrian professionals are excellent to have on staff. They are available when your clients need them, which will attract more business.

Twice-Daily Mucking. Horse owners know that their horses produce significant excrement—especially those who aren’t turned out. Twice-daily stall cleaning means there are fewer problems with insects, bacteria, fungus, and other issues.

Equine Monitoring System. This sounds a lot more sophisticated than it is. Basically, horse farms are most attractive when clients know their horses are looked after on a regular basis. Get into the habit of checking on all horses at least once a day to look for signs of injury or illness.

Accessibility. Can your clients find you when they need you? Do you spend a lot of time on your horse farm? Try to be as available to your clients as possible, and they will appreciate your devotion.

If you’re worried that you don’t offer most of these horse farm amenities, don’t worry. There is plenty of time to develop your enterprise and to build upon the horse business that you’ve created.

Make a list of the amenities you want to add to your horse farm, and a date on which you’ll be able to create or implement each one. It might take time, but you’ll get more business as a result.