ASTA Management Academy

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ASTA Management Academy

Program Overview

The ASTA Management Academy focuses on the practical application of general management concepts that are critical to the long-term success of seed firms. The core management courses form the foundation of the academy and are designed to broaden your general management abilities. Special issue seminars are scheduled throughout the program to allow you an in-depth look at current issues that are critical to the seed industry.

examining fields

You will benefit from the expert contributions of faculty members from the Department of Agricultural Economics, as well as recognized industry authorities. Case problems and group activities create ample opportunity for intensive interaction and discussion with faculty, speakers and other seed industry managers.

Key Benefits

  • Discuss the changing agribusiness environment and implications for seed companies in the future.
  • Explore fundamental marketing strategies, as well as methods of segmenting and targeting markets.
  • Discuss the five functional areas of business with other participants and consider how a decision made in one area impacts the others.
  • Evaluate strategies for creating and leveraging your organization’s competitive advantage.
  • Identify and apply financial management tools that examine the profitability of a company and increase understanding of how to make a positive impact.
  • Understand what makes employees perform well and the characteristics of leadership that work for relationships up, down, and across the organization.

Program Content

This program guides you through a structured exploration of essential management topics and skills. Key themes for the academy include:

Marketing Management

With a firm grasp on the changing agribusiness environment, this session focuses on what it means for a seed firm to have a true market orientation. You will learn how to create and communicate points of difference by examining topics such as customer satisfaction, market disciplines and demand innovation.

Organizational Leadership

This course will help you acquire new skills and tools for evaluating and managing your own and others’ performance. Topics include: building productive working relationships, improving managerial communication and defining performance management strategies.

Financial Management

Understanding and correctly using key financial management tools is essential in addressing many day-to-day problems seed firm managers face. This course emphasizes developing core financial management competencies and utilizing them to make decisions.

Strategic Management

Strategy formulation helps organizations determine and match its internal goals, strengths, limitations and resources with opportunities and challenges that exist in the external business environment. You will study strategic positioning and critical competitive capabilities, including speed, quality, and innovation.

Who Should Attend?

Designed for both experienced decision makers and those new to the industry, the ASTA Management Academy has graduated approximately 1,050 participants representing more than 300 firms worldwide. Participating organizations have represented all segments of the seed business including the vegetable/garden, corn/soybean, and turf grass marketplaces. ASTA associate members attending the academy have also found it beneficial to interact and learn with this diverse group of professionals. Typically, each class represents a cross-section of industries and areas and levels of responsibilities.

Participants have found benefit to attending with a team from their organization. For information on team pricing, please contact program manager, Emily Hoeing.

Program Partner

The center offers this program in partnership with the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA). 


Program Agenda

Printable PDF version of the schedule.

Monday, March 2, 2020

4:00 p.m.
Krannert 758

4:30 p.m.
Program Welcome and Introductions

5:15 p.m.
Thinking Strategically — Acting Intentionally
Larry Lad

6:30 p.m.
Networking Reception

Tuesday, March 3, 2020

8:00 a.m.
Economic Outlook
Larry DeBoer

9:15 a.m.
Fundamentals of Financial Management
Brady Brewer

12:00 p.m.

1:15 p.m.
Drivers of Change in Agriculture — Implications for the Seed Industry
Allan Gray

3:30 p.m.
Disruption & Chaos — Impact for the Seed Industry
Allan Gray

5:30 p.m.

Dinner on own

Wednesday, March 4, 2020

8:00 a.m.
Organizational Leadership — Leading Change
Pete Hammett

12:00 p.m.

1:00 p.m.
Sales and Marketing — Creating and Communicating Value
Scott Downey

5:30 p.m.

Dinner on own

Thursday, March 5, 2020

8:00 a.m.
Effective Supply Chain Management
Brian Bourquard

11:15 a.m.
Multiple Brand Strategies
Craig Newman

12:15 p.m.

1:00 p.m.
Financial Management
Mike Gunderson

4:45 p.m.
Business Strategy — Laying the Groundwork
Larry Lad

6:30 p.m.
Group Dinner

Friday, March 6, 2020

8:00 a.m.
Business Strategy — Positioning to Play the Game
Larry Lad

Our Responses as Managers and Leaders
Larry Lad

11:45 a.m.
Closing Comments, Certificates and Evaluation

12:00 p.m.

Please note that Indiana is on Eastern Standard Time (EST).

Participant Specifics

Program Location

Krannert, Purdue University
403 West State Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907


We have a room block reserved for the group, checking in on Sunday, March 1st and checking out on Friday, March 6th. If you have not done so already, please contact the Hilton Garden Inn West Lafayette to make your reservation by Friday, February 7th and mention that you are with ASTA Management Academy to receive the $103 room rate. Check-in is at 3:00 PM and check-out is at 11:00 AM.

Hilton Garden Inn West Lafayette Wabash Landing
356 East State Street, West Lafayette, IN
(765) 743-2100
Distance from campus: .64 miles
Locate with google maps

Reserve your room online


If you would like to take a shuttle from the Indianapolis Airport to the Hilton Garden Inn or Union Club Hotel, you may contact:
Lafayette Limo/Shuttle Service
Star of America Shuttle Service
Toll Free 1-800-228-0814

Covered parking is available at the Hilton Garden Inn. The Hilton Garden Inn has a free shuttle that you may reserve at the front desk to take to campus. There is also guest parking in the Grant Street Parking Garage if you choose to drive to campus. A parking pass to exit the garage will be provided at registration.

Getting to Purdue University: Directions and Maps


Please eat breakfast before attending the program. We will provide lunch to the group on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. Coffee, soft drinks and refreshments will be available throughout each day.

What to Wear

Attire for the conference is business casual. March in Indiana is generally a high of 40 degrees with a low of 22 degrees.


Materials will be furnished for you throughout the program. All of the presentations will also be available on our website following the program.

Tunnel System at Purdue

There is an underground tunnel system at Purdue. If you are interested in using the tunnels in case of inclement weather, please download this convenient map. The tunnel goes from the Purdue Memorial Union to Krannert Center and also from Grant Street Parking Garage to Krannert Center.

For more information, contact:

Kearstynn Goulette
Program Manager

Program Cancellation Policy

If a participant is unable to attend a Purdue University Center for Food and Agricultural Business program, the participant may choose to: 1) transfer their registration fee to another participant within the same company, or 2) choose to receive a credit for the same program or another program that takes place within the 12 months following the originally booked event. However, a request to use a credit must be received no less than 30 days prior to the program start date, otherwise the credit will not be valid. No refunds will be issued regardless of cancellation date.

The Center for Food and Agricultural Business reserves the right to cancel a program due to low enrollment or other circumstances which would make the program non-viable. If a program is cancelled, registrants will be offered a full refund. Should circumstances arise that result in the postponement of a program, the Center for Food and Agricultural Business has the right to either issue a full refund or transfer registration to the same program on the new future date. The Center for Food and Agricultural Business will not be responsible for reimbursement of any participant expenses related to the cancellation or postponement of an event.