Spotting a bug truck on the road in Florida is not an unusual thing. There are days that 3 different trucks from 3 different companies can all be at the same 3 way stop. And if you’re a bug man, oh boy you can spot another bug truck from a mile away can’t you? Maybe it’s the familiar ladder rack, those fiberglass boxes or maybe the hose reel perched up on the side wall. Sometimes they wave or you do, you know, the cool motorcycle wave where your hand just juts out a little to the left of your steering wheel.
Then there are those trucks from other industries that almost look like a bug truck but even though very close, you see that they’re not—- they’re just different. Sometimes it’s a plumbers truck, handyman or what have you but once you hang around this industry for a while you just learn to spot other bug guys and rarely are you fooled. So you relax that hand that was ready to wave and just mosey through the stop. But what do you do when you’re crossing that path of a bonafide bug truck but it’s really not a bug truck? One that has all the markings, the logo is there & numbers plastered on the sides for all to see but instead of a pest control vehicle there is one other (or more) distinction also prominently displayed?
Such is the phenomena in my little sphere of the world and I’m guessing yours too. Just the other day I came across a real live bug truck that didn’t seem to have one single product on board to kill one single pest. (well except I think there was a B&G hose draped over some pvc pipe) It was, XYZ Pest Control H20 Division and my first thought was, oh man what meeting did I miss?
Are We Trying To Be Too Much To Too Many?
The truck I saw was from a real pest control company who was obviously licensed. They do termite, pests, rodents, lawns just like so many of us do. Yet this truck & this company goes beyond the normal pest control. They also included in their portfolio of services lawn sprinklers–thus the H20 division, landscaping, mowing, weeding, pruning and gutter cleaning…….but then the truck veered around the corner & I couldn’t read the rest. (and there was more)
No matter I suppose, I’m seeing more and more companies almost by the day diversify this way. There are companies now that sell and install outdoor summer kitchens, install paver patios, cement curbing, have whole yard mowing routes (weed whacking and all) sod installation, pressure washing your home, carpet cleaning and repair and one company that sent out thousands of mailers not to sell pest control……but to sell the famous ‘Green Egg’ grill that I guess is all the rage. Imagine a flyer from a bug company that didn’t want you to buy their bug service??????????? Are we trying maybe to be to much more than a pest control provider?
My Thoughts On Diversification
To me, and this is my opinion, it’s really just watering down our industry and taking away from our professionalism. I mean would you like to have a ten o’clock pest control appointment for your home only to see the guy that was weed whacking your neighbors house put down the 2 cycle weed eater and grab a B&G then knock on your door? Or do you want to be sold pest control while you’re having a ‘Green Egg’ delivered or vice versa? I don’t remember reading that article in the latest CPCO magazine about proper paver installation or PCT going on and on about how your H20 division is the leading edge of pest control these days.
What does the your customer think when you send out a lawn mower “tech” to tackle a pharaoh ant problem? and what pray tell is on his business card-?
John P. Professional
Excess Grass Removal Specialist
Sorry–for those of you who have put 23 trucks on the road in the last 2 years but when 21 of your vehicles have weed whackers etc. on them— you are not fostering a pest control company with trained pest professionals who protect clients from unwanted pests and their associated disease and risks……, you have a lawn maintenance firm, or a paver/summer kitchen business or just whatever else you’ve decided to ride as your wave to success. AND THAT IS FINE!!!!!!!!! It’s just that You just also have a bug service as an add on and it’s that BUG LICENSE that serves as your umbrella not the other way around.
So My Question Is; How Should You Be Regulated?
Every three months (in my state) a list comes out of companies and technicians who have violated the states rules by which we are governed. With that list there are also published the penalties. (usually fines or warnings but sometimes worse) My question is, what, when or how will the state body of enforcement for pest control in any area be able to do with a PEST CONTROL company that has a customer complain that their sprinkler system doesn’t cover the whole range they promised? That the pavers XYZ PEST CONTROL installed are not level?, and how will the state inspector enforce the fact that a PEST CONTROL truck has PVC cement rolling around a bed of a truck unsecured? Want me to be more facetious?, I could go on.
I guess I’m somewhat of a purist and hate to see pest control diluted into all these different directions. I understand the allure of a “one stop shop” where many services and one check to one company cross paths. I guess I just want to make sure the next bug truck I give a friendly wave to is to that of a dedicated professional, one who lives, breathes and sleeps pest control,,,,, not someone who is leaking PVC glue in it’s path.