The types of business operations from one farm to the next can be significantly different, so management strategies would be different too. Also, the personalities of the personnel would also determine how the business should be set up. In a largeer operation (over about $50,000 gross annual), it's almost essential to maintain a more formal relationship with employees. But in a smaller venture, the trust & mutual respect factor becomes more critical. My focus is mostly on the smaller operations, like family farmer-market type growers, working limited acreage with limited resources. The biggest element that assures sustainable success is that all partners & helpers share the same philosopy and goals. They need to see their "purpose" as something bigger than their individual selves. As social and economic conditions continue to develop - evolve - deteriorate, in this country, sense-of-purpose will become an even greater ingredient for success and survival.
As far as the helpers, be they employees or interns, it is not common to find them with developed philosophies and goals. Still, they can learn the process quickly. Understanding the reasons for the process can come later. From that understanding they can develop their own philosophies.
Instilling a sense of purpose is part of any farm. Its not just the crops you raise, but the people as well. It only takes a few weeks to grow peas, a couple of months for potatoes. Turning a green recruit into self-motivated, knowledgeable, and responsible team member can easily take a couple of years, but what a bountiful harvest that is!
I'm new to this forum and have not yet explored it fully. I don't know how far people here have explored the future of food and sustainability. I've done my homework and concluded that food production will become more localized, sustainable agricultural practices will gain in importance and popularity, and food prices will rise across the board. Small farms will be making a comeback. Self-sufficiency will be the word of the day.
The economic situation in the world is changing. A smallholding, farmstead, minifarm or whatever you want to call it offers an outstanding chance for income diversification. I fully intend to get a farm of my own up and running in the next couple of years in whatever form I can using whatever I have to work with.
Seed the Mind, Harvest Ideas.
Diego Footer on Permaculture Based Homesteads - from the Eat Your Dirt Summit