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Pest in Class: Expert Voices in Pest Management
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Pest in Class: Expert Voices in Pest Management

Author: FieldRoutes

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The Pest In Class podcast from FieldRoutes is your destination for hearing insight, inspiration, and stories from fellow pest control industry leaders and entrepreneurs. Pest In Class host Amanda Salvatore will interview a new leader each episode as FieldRoutes celebrates the success of its customers while delivering software solutions to help them along their growth journey. 

Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
30 Episodes
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Hiring the right people for your pest control business is a marketing activity, not an HR one. You need to be intentional about attracting the right talent to your company. You also have to create the right message to put in front of the right people when they’re most apt to receive it. Retaining that talent is just as crucial as onboarding and training them.That motivated Ryan Englin to start his company in Nashville. He’s on a mission to help businesses in the pest control industry hire the right people with a process that gets repeatable results.He joins us on this episode of Pest in Class to talk about what his company, Core Matters, specializes in, how to hire the right people, and some best practices for employee retention.Join us as we discuss:[04:35] Why recruitment is a marketing activity[09:06] How to hire the right people[19:00] How to ask for what you need and showcase what you can offer[39:54] Best practices for employee retentionCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:Core Matters Titans of the Trades PodcastHire Better People FasterField RoutesYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Pest in Class on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here. Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Pest in Class in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
From the outset, a pest control business might appear like an easy undertaking. What many don’t know or realize is that there’s more to it than meets the eye. It involves understanding the types of challenges and issues that each individual customer faces, introducing systems and processes to help the operation run seamlessly, and training staff regularly.In many cases, employees are also juggling multiple roles and responsibilities while organizing the expansion of their operations as well as coverage areas.Kyle Selbach personally believes that the more uncomfortable you get, the more successful you will be. He’s on a mission to drive his team to excel and provide customers with the best solutions in the business.He joins us on this episode of Pest in Class to talk about what his company, All U Need Pest Control, excels in and shares some of the growing pains and mistakes they made along the way that have led to their success.Join us as we discuss:[05:43] How to address some of the growing pains of companies[13:36] The challenges of expanding to different locations[18:15] Advice to owners looking to expand and make a transition[22:10] Why getting uncomfortable is key to successCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:All U Need Pest ControlFlorida Pest Management AssociationField RoutesYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Pest in Class on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Pest in Class in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Dr. Dini Miller has had a burning passion for pest control field research since she picked up a copy of The Flight of the Iguana, a commentary on evolutionary biology.Today, as a professor of Entomology at Virginia Tech, she spends considerable time studying the patterns behind agricultural and habitat infestations. In this insightful episode, Dini shares what she’s learned throughout 30 years of field research, including pest control techniques for cockroaches and bedbugs, as well as training tips for technicians.  Join us as we discuss:[16:45] A day in the life of an entomologist doing field research[22:50] Debunking social stigmas around bug infestations[27:45] The latest control techniques for cockroaches and bedbugs[45:22] Training tips for leaders in the pest control industryCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:The Flight of the Iguana by David QuammenYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to FieldFamous on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for FieldFamous in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
On the surface, door-to-door sales can look like an easy job. Everyone in the pest control business will tell you that it’s harder than it looks. You need to be able to handle rejection, grab the listener’s attention, and be quick to adapt to changing circumstances. It’s about building relationships, caring for customers, and ultimately helping them to solve their problems.That motivated John Ely to start his own pest control business in Atlanta. He knows from experience that the key to success with door-to-door sales lies in building trust with customers who initially had no intention to buy from you.He joins us on this episode of Pest in Class to share how he helped his company ProCare Pest Control to scale by providing professional services, good sales training, and systems that work for his business.Join us as we discuss:[08:16]: The importance of developing your own sales style[19:28]: John’s struggles and how he overcame them[25:31]: Why a good sales and training process is paramount[33:41]: John’s advice to business owners facing adversityCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:ProCare Pest ControlField RoutesYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Pest in Class on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Pest in Class in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
While change can be viewed with some trepidation, it’s also necessary for a company to scale effectively. Many in the pest control industry have started to realize how important it is to transition their operations to software that can make their work faster, more accurate, and more efficient.That’s what inspired Melanie Espinola to help get her company to the next level. She understood that to make the transition, the team would have to train, learn, unlearn, and relearn several aspects of their daily work.She joins us on this episode of Pest in Class to share how she helped General Environmental Services make the transition to software that changed the trajectory of the business and made it more successful.Join us as we discuss:[09:27]: Opportunity for growth in pest control[18:33]: What the transition to software was like[30:49]: How to prepare your team for a transition[44:47]: Advice for those thinking of transitioning to a new softwareCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:General Environmental ServicesBell LabsField RoutesYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Pest in Class on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Pest in Class in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Pest control marketing and branding can be very generic, bland, and forgettable for the most part. Many in the business don’t consider how important it is to visually communicate what your brand stands for and how you serve the wider community. Building your brand not only involves creating awareness but also rolling out marketing initiatives that are relevant, useful, entertaining, and memorable.That’s what motivated Crystal Williams to get into marketing for pest control businesses in the first place - to inject some “zestiness” into the brands of her customers and help them stand out in a crowded market.Crystal joins us on this episode of Pest in Class to share how Lemon Seed Marketing helps service-based businesses flourish and generate great results through differentiated marketing.Join us as we discuss:[13:48]: Tips for rebranding and how business owners can tell their stories[20:59]: Logo vs. mascot: Which one should companies use and the benefits of each[28:57]: How pest control businesses should leverage social media[37:13]: Advice on how business owners can start creating contentCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:Lemon Seed MarketingFrom the Yellow Chair PodcastSpot On Pest ControlField RoutesSpot On's JingleYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to FieldFamous on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here.Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for FieldFamous in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Pest control operations can be a sticky business without the proper tools in place. Critical elements like routing, tech training, and customer data management can turn into critical issues if leaders don’t have processes in place to keep track of it all.That’s why the first thing Zeus Martinez did after becoming the COO of Newtown Termite & Pest Control was to get away from pen and paper and implement software that would help scale the business.Zeus joins us for our first episode of Pest in Class to share how Newtown has grown nearly 400% in three years by integrating new systems around a customer-centric culture. Join us as we discuss:[6:23] How problems scale with your company when left unaddressed[12:35] Why data is one of your most important customer assets[17:31] Leaving a lasting positive impact on customers[27:12] Marketing and practical examples of community outreachCheck out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:FieldRoutesYou can find this interview and many more by subscribing to Pest in Class on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here. Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Pest in Class in your favorite podcast player.Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Pop the champagne and call it a wrap, season one of Field Famous has come to an end! Over the past 21 episodes, we’ve heard from some of the best in the industry – their stories of how they grew their businesses, how they manage their teams, and how they face the challenges of doing their best to make our food, homes, and workplaces stay pest free. Join us for a quick look back at this past season of episodes and some incredibly heartfelt words from your fearless host, Dr. Chris Fasano as to what the future of this show looks like and how you can continue to be Field Famous. Join us as we celebrate: - [0:22] Chris’s encouragement to you the listener and the industry - [1:48] How you can be Field Famous by joining the show - [3:09] A few of the best moments from some of season one’s guests - Phil Cooper, Chelle Hartzer , and Brad Pitts You can find this interview and many more by subscribing to FieldFamous on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or subscribe on YouTube to watch episodes. Listening on a desktop and can’t see the links? Just search for FieldFamous in your favorite podcast player.  Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
When you reach for a can of bug spray, you want it to work fast and wipe out that pest. But have you ever given thought to what went into making that can of Raid or Sevin, or what formulas go into professional pest control applications? Cassie Krejci, known on social media as “Cassie the Bug Doc," is here to answer that and more as we dive into her work as an entomologist for Rentokil Initial. Cassie takes us through her journey to stepping out of the labs of academia and moving into an industry where she could make a larger impact on making the world a healthier place. Join us as we discuss: - [4:26] The public health side of being an entomologist - [22:10] How gatekeeping pest control information hurts us all - [29:12] Why winning on social media is easier if your company has a face Check out these resources we mentioned during the podcast: - Rollins Urban and Structural Entomology Facility You can find this interview and many more by subscribing to FieldFamous on Apple Podcasts, on Spotify, or here. Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for FieldFamous in your favorite podcast player.  Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Different software systems can offer similar looks. "It bills. It schedules. It has mobile apps," says Mark Stewart, a strategic account executive for FieldRoutes. "But the key is efficiency. That's what is changing the game. "It's all about, 'How do I make my employees' lives easier?'" Stewart is a seven-year veteran with FieldRoutes who previously played roles in digital transformation processes for major media companies. "I really want to help people in general understand what's going on today, what's different, and why change is important," Stewart says. Listen or watch in this episode of FieldFamous with host Dr. Christopher Fasano in which Stewart talks about: 2:29 His experience in guiding companies, whether they’re large or operated by one person, through digital transformation. 3:48 A lesson businesses can learn from baseball great Cy Young. 7:01 Choosing a software provider the same way you’d choose to hire a new employee. 12:19 The importance of making life easier for your team. 15:45  How to lead change within an organization. 23:59  Advice for shopping for software. 29:50 The need to embrace AI. At the 33:36 mark, Stewart and Fasano end this episode with the Field Famous Rapid Fire Finish. Useful links from this week's show: - mark.stewart@fieldroutes.com, 214.232.5533 - BeFieldFamous.com - FieldRoutes.com  Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
The customer comes to your pest control business with a problem. Their stress is up.  Bringing that stress down should be a key part of the sales process and customer retention. "The faster that we can take control of the discussion, the faster that we can create comfort in our organization, the faster that we can give them a description that makes logical sense, and the faster that we can get a credit card on file, the longer they're going to stay," says Seth Garber, CEO of Pest Daily and co-founder of FRAXN. "The second their stress elevates, they become a commodity,” he adds.  “When they become a commodity, then the customer may or may not stay as soon as a problem is solved." Garber is a former pest control company owner who has gained experience in consulting and high tech. He’s the CEO of Pest Daily, which offers course learning on topics such as sales and marketing, human resources, and finance, and he’s co-founder of FRAXN, which helps turn information into insights. Listen or watch in this fast-paced, 33-minute episode of FieldFamous with host Dr. Christopher Fasano in which Garber talks about: 0:56 His career path and how he initially chose the pest control industry. 5:27 The three phases of learning during his professional career, beginning in the pest control industry, evolving in high tech and consulting, and returning to pest control. 11:23 Marketing strategies that have worked in pest control and how those have evolved over time. 17:55 How the way he ran a pest control business changed when he realized he wanted to sell. 20:45 Tactics for building recurring revenue and retaining customers. 25:48 How Pest Daily and FRAXN help their customers. 29:16 Preparing for a slower season; reviewing subscription-based models, technology, and data; and taking care of people. At the 31:20 mark, Garber and Fasano end the episode with the Field Famous Rapid Fire Finish. Useful links from this week's show: PestDaily.com FRAXN.com BeFieldFamous.com Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Brad Pitts has built his new role as a consumer services consultant off years of experience and examples accumulated in the pest control industry.Chief among his teachings today is how to value team members: Not just in hiring good ones, but in retaining them."If employees view it as a career, they're going to stay with you, if you treat them the right way," says Pitts, whose resume includes stops at HomeTeam Pest Defense, Orkin Pest Control, Arrow Environmental Services, Fox Pest Control, and Hawx Pest Control.Listen or watch in this episode of FieldFamous with host Dr. Christopher Fasano in which Pitts discusses:1:19 His eyebrow-raising name.1:48 Being a consultant in an industry that he says found him early in his work life.10:11 Creating collaborative environments as a leader. 13:34 Strategies for developing customer loyalty and maintaining a high level of service while growing a business.20:28 The changes he has navigated in the industry.24:00 Insights for ways that leaders can retain employees.26:48 His optimism about the future of the pest control industry.28:20 His love for coaching businesses to find even greater success.At the 30-minute mark, Pitts and Fasano conclude with the Field Famous Rapid Fire Finish.Useful links from this week's show:Brad Pitts on LinkedInBeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Pete Schopen isn't necessarily taking the road less traveled. But he's taking a road. Lots of them. Schopen, who founded his own pest control company after leaving sports broadcasting, sold Schopen Pest Solutions in 2023. Now he travels the country, with his wife, Tami, in their RV, meeting with pest control companies and sharing his lessons learned, some of them the hard way, about business finances and office culture. Listen or watch this Field Famous episode, hosted by Dr. Christopher Fasano of FieldRoutes, as Schopen talks about:1:10 His interests in writing and baseball – and how those are relevant to pest control.10:57 The roles, tragic and supportive, that family played as he re-evaluated his career in sports broadcasting.16:42 The growing pains encountered and growth strategies employed for a new owner of a pest control company.21:15 The ways he failed – and learned.26:10 The emotional day he announced he had sold Schopen Pest Solutions and the process that led to it.33:33 How his new venture helps businesses address their finances and their office cultures.At 36:24, Schopen and Fasano wind things up with the Field Famous Rapid Fire Finish.Useful links from this week's show:RV There Yet Pest Consulting on FacebookThe Great Game of BusinessBeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.comContact Schopen: rvthereyetpest@gmail.com or 847.529.2848Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Sports teams and athletes benefit from the guidance of a knowledgeable coach. Can pest control teams?Absolutely. Sheri Spencer Bachman, the owner of Pest Control Business Coach, is patrolling the sideline for them, converting her knowledge gathered as owner of Spencer Pest Services into strategies and techniques that can help a pest control business thrive."I help pest control business owners remove the chaos out of their business and allow themselves to function as business owners instead of having the business own them,” Bachman says.  In this Field Famous episode with the host, Dr. Christopher Fasano of FieldRoutes, listen or watch as Bachman discusses: 1:30 Her family landing in the pest control business and why she fell in love with it.4:52 The importance of culture, people, and training in a pest control business.10:44 Learning the lessons that helped Spencer Pest Services grow.12:45 Strategies for making changes to systems and processes work for a pest control business team.20:35 How to maximize recurring revenue. 24:56 Driving retention with not just customers but team members.28:00 The changes in pest control strategies – and the terminology.33:26 Tailoring her work with pest control companies.At 36:18, Bachman plays the Field Famous Rapid Round to close the episode.Useful links from this week's show:PestControlBusinessCoach.comKolbe.comBeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Andrew de la Chapelle, a senior consultant with PCO Bookkeepers, sees common pains in accounting and the pest control industry.Some accountants lack industry experience but still get hired to work with pest control companies. And some companies will use their own staff for accounting but can fall short of having enough experience. And that’s where PCO Bookkeepers and de la Chapelle can bridge gaps, as they do for about 400 pest control and lawn companies. "They don't bring that expertise that we bring," de la Chapelle says of some accountants. "If someone asked us to do an auto repair shop, we'd probably turn them away, because that's not our niche."De la Chapelle discusses accounting, growth, and merger-and-acquisition consulting in this Field Famous episode with host Dr. Christopher Fasano of FieldRoutes. Listen or watch as de la Chapelle discusses:1:40 His background in printing, warehousing, and distributing documents for Fortune 500 companies. And why he found such appeal with one company’s name.7:48 The days of GPS getting you … close.10:03 Finding a home in the pest control industry. 15:58 Connecting with Dan Gordon to advise pest control and lawn companies. 25:44 Preparing companies for possible acquisition by ensuring not only growth but profitability. 34:33 How prospective customers can learn more. Then de la Chapelle, at 36:51, and Fasano wind up this episode with the Rapid Fire Finish.Useful links from this week's show:PCOBookkeepers.comAndrew de la Chapelle at PCOBookkeepers.comBeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Getting a business off the ground and making growth happen is not for everybody. Allan Draper, CEO of proof. Pest Control, entrepreneur, investor, and podcast host explains why it’s the only option for him to FieldFamous podcast host Dr. Christopher Fasano. Draper discusses why an early attempt at starting a pest control business didn’t quite work out and his journey to where he is now. He shares his experience and advice for listeners thinking about starting a business. “I don’t believe in living a balanced life,” he says, “I don’t think there’s such a thing.” He discusses how dividing his focus between family life and business allows him to be successful. “You don’t know till you know what it takes to start a business.” Listen in for Draper’s tips on making good business decisions and his journey so far:3:02 How it all started in the Buckeye State. 4:45 Business is crazy. Right and wrong turns he and his brother took when getting started. 8:49 Keep the boat afloat. Draper talks about priorities for getting business through the first five years. 12:27 Why embracing the focused imbalance is part of having what it takes. 17:51 Finding the barometer for success and the pivotal role of discomfort. 23:09 Draper shares his maxim: The best way to grow a company to sell is to grow it not to sell. 27:30 How podcasting is all about giving back to the pest control community.Useful links from this week's show: AllanDraper.com Allan Draper Instagram proof. Pest Control The Business Growth Pod FieldRoutes.com BeFieldFamous.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Most of us couldn’t do this. But a former practicing dentist who is now a pest control company owner can find an easy parallel between the two careers. "How it's the same thing is we help our clients, just as we helped our patients, solve problems that are painful," Carl Braun, the owner of Quality Pest Control in Omaha, NE, tells FieldFamous podcast host Dr. Christopher Fasano. "It's just a different kind of a pain. And they can't do it themselves. You have to be in the people business to practice dentistry, and you have to be in the people business to be successful in pest management."Braun's journey from his first people business to his second is certainly unique. In this episode of FieldFamous with Fasano, listen or watch as Braun discusses:1:30 His background, his life in Nebraska, his education, and his take on Cornhuskers football.6:32 How changes in the dental profession prompted a break – and created a new opportunity.10:45 Reshaping the business that he and his wife bought and finding his place in the pest control industry. 16:55 Hiring and retaining employees and developing the culture inside the business.22:40 Learning from missteps along the way.24:20 The future for Quality Pest Control.26:28 Building service plans for and retaining customers and developing recurring revenue.34:40 His advice for those in pest control and other field services who are just starting out.And at the 36:28 mark, Braun responds to Fasano's questions in the Field Famous Rapid-Fire Finish.Useful links from this week's show:Quality Pest ControlFieldRoutes.comBeFieldFamous.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
How does a pest control business keep the cash flowing and employees paid and retained during the slow winter months? Host Dr. Christopher Fasano sits down with Scott Young, president of Certified Lights, to discuss how he successfully added holiday lighting services to his pest control business and eventually evolved from Certified Pest to Certified Lights. The two discuss the original company’s expansion into new branches, their sale to a larger pest control company, and evolution over the years into Certified Lights. You’ll learn how Young added holiday lighting services to his pest control business after getting tired of laying people off during slow times only to struggle with hiring later. You’ll also see how that change led to unprecedented growth, and how it eventually led to the creation of a new business focused on training others to do the same. In this Field Famous episode, Scott Young and host Dr. Christopher Fasano discuss:6:28 From $400K to $2 million in five years and the evolution of Certified Pest11:13 The next phase and pivoting to include holiday lighting services15:03 How to expand into holiday lighting: training, margins, expenses, and more17:06 Labor retention and growth during slow times, including the great recession 20:53 The Certified training opportunity 24:25 Lease vs. sell model by the numbers29:20 The Certified Lights process and support model35:10 Growing to sell and what buyers look for Useful links from this week’s show:Certified Lights trainingCertified Lights websiteCertified Lights Facebook communityPrevious episodes at BeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Dr. Christopher Fasano talks to Keith Robinson, board-certified entomologist and vice president of pest control services at Fine Tune, about his 30-year career and what he has learned along the way. From veteran to industry veteran, Robinson has learned a thing or two about building relationships that get you places. “These people are on LinkedIn,” he says. “If you can find them on LinkedIn and connect with them, you’ve got an opportunity.”Robinson shares what he’s learned about signing commercial accounts and retaining them, including technology's critical role and understanding the difference between residential and commercial services.2:20 The route from U.S. Army veteran to bug slayer, how Robinson got to where he is now.6:00 The conversation takes a deep dive into the importance of auditing for commercial accounts.12:50 It’s all about data and how technology facilitates better services, more efficient operations, and better reporting.19:00 The key to understanding what the client really wants and making moves based on that.25:11 Why bringing old-school sales tactics is still best practice to sign commercial accounts.32:50 From binders to iPads, real-life experience of how technology has evolved technicians’ lives and work.33:50 Robinson explains why the right software is the first step in being successful in the commercial sphere and let research and expertise do the rest.Useful links from this week's show:FineTuneUS.comBeFieldFamous.comFieldRoutes.com Hosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
Brian Starnes embraces automation. But the co-founder and CEO of Pest SOS isn't all-automation, all-the-time. "Where connection is necessary, that's where you've got to be able to hone in on your people and keep that there," he tells Field Famous host Dr. Christopher Fasano. "That is what people want to buy."Starnes, whose company provides phone sales, customer service, scheduling, and billings and collections support for pest control businesses, joins Fasano to discuss:1:17 His journey that includes work in construction management and banking and hisleadership of seven pest control companies in different states.11:17 Finding his "swim lane" in pest control.18:35 The evolution of Pest SOS to "yes" after more than two years of "no."22:27 How to best serve customers and find employees to carry out the mission.30:17 How Pest SOS works.33:50 The Field Famous Rapid-Fire Finish.Useful links from this week's show:Pest-SOS.comBeFieldFamous.comFieldFamous.comHosted by Ausha. See ausha.co/privacy-policy for more information.
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