Dylan Seals: Buzz readers, it's Dylan Seals, the co-producer of The Boardroom Buzz. I am typically behind the scenes but I'm in a good mood. Greetings from my Tennessee studio. I had to cut in here and share something that I'm elated, excited, and thrilled with and I hope you are as well. Before we get started with our episode, I'm going to tell you a little story from Big Tech news. In The Boardroom Buzz, we don't talk about Big Tech but in Big Tech, Elon Musk, the famed mogul behind Tesla, SpaceX, and PayPal, is set to close on his acquisition of the social media network Twitter.
Elon says he's going to open Twitter up and make it a free speech platform. I couldn't be more excited. I'm an American. I like free speech. I like fast cars. I like Twitter. I like Elon Musk. That's not the point. The point is Mr. Patrick Baldwin, Fat Pat himself, made a confession in episode 97 with Jamie Clement. Patrick opened his mouth. When I heard the news about Elon Musk, I couldn't help but think back to something that Patrick said on episode 97. I went back and re-listen to it.
Upon reflection, I thought you, Buzz readers, might want to learn about this clip. Keeping in mind that the Twitter deal is moving forward, I would like to play you a short clip from episode 97 before we get to episode 108. Thank you so much. It has been my pleasure speaking with you. Please reach out to Fat Pat and let him know it's going to be okay. Here's Jamie, Patrick, and Paul in episode 97.
Jamie Clement: Are they in the business of maximizing shareholder value? Will Twitter be if Musk closes that transaction? I don't think he will. I don't know. All kinds of questions there make it a little bit more difficult to own some of these stocks.
Patrick Baldwin: I hope he doesn't close on Twitter only because I have a side bet with Dylan.
Paul Giannamore: You’re not getting off that easy. What was the side bet so we know? Let’s got to make it public, Patrick.
Patrick Baldwin: I think I have to buy him a Tesla or something crazy like that. I don't even know.
Paul Giannamore: If what?
Jamie Clement: That shouldn't be, “I think I might have to buy him a Tesla.”
Paul Giannamore: “I may have put a Tesla on the table.”
Patrick Baldwin: I have to go and look. I know it was not a Tesla on the line. I'm digging through my messages to see what the bid was. This is what it is, Elon’s face as a tramp stamp is what's on the line here.
Jamie Clement: I might rather give up the Tesla.
Patrick Baldwin: It’s bringing back some memories.
Paul Giannamore: The loser would have to get Elon’s face as a tramp stamp.
Patrick Baldwin: That's what was on the line. I don't think we ever made this official. We'll see. He's listening to it right now. Dylan, I don't know if you're ready for that tattoo yet.
Jamie Clement: I'll tell you something, Patrick, up in my neck of the woods. We talked about regional barbecue and that kind of thing. Whatever happened to a reasonable steak dinner wager between friends? Paul, am I off base here?
Paul Giannamore: It's evolved into Elon tramp stamps now.
Jamie Clement: The word is de-evolve.
Paul Giannamore: I saw you in person up there in Boston. How was PestWorld for you all?
Seth Garber: I enjoyed PestWorld. It was great to see all the technology out there. I liked seeing so much of the younger generation taking leadership roles. To me, it was inspiring to see what was taking place.
Paul Giannamore: I got to hand it to you, Seth, the shindig you put on. I was in meetings all day and then I had a few dinners here and there. I didn't go to many social party-type situations. The thing that you put on at the Fairmont was well done, the drinks, the d'oeuvres, and the people. It was great.
Seth Garber: Thanks. I can only credit my team, they worked hard on that. I'm glad you guys enjoyed it.
Paul Giannamore: I did. Fat Pat, your first PestWorld.
Patrick Baldwin: It was my first. All work and no play though. Although I thought those were some late evenings with the sets, the session dig, the after parties if you will, the late dinners, and then watching people make fools of themselves late into the night. It was quite amusing. They're reading right now laughing at themselves.
Paul Giannamore: Fat Pat, you were on the road and just came back.
Patrick Baldwin: There was the week at PestWorld and then Seth and I got to hang out in South Carolina.
Paul Giannamore: You came back and then we, on POTOMAC TV, launched the Tony Sfreddo interview. It’s the second time he's been on Buzz media. He was our guest number one, episode 5, on The Boardroom Buzz. Patrick, did he settle the age-old commercial versus residential debate? You could ask that question a lot. What were your thoughts on that?
Patrick Baldwin: That's funny. That was the most surprising thing I've heard in a while. I never saw that coming in how he responded to commercial and residential. You've got to go watch the interview.
Paul Giannamore: We could say we talk about it. Tony Sfreddo, we call him The King of Route Density. In this last interview, we called him DC’s King of Commercial Pest Control. This guy was doing the Pentagon, the Capitol building, the IRS, you name it, the list goes on, the Supreme Court, in addition to tens of millions of dollars and other commercial services revenue in DC.
He sits down with me in San Juan and I asked him, “Tony, if you were to do this all over again, how would you do it?” He said, “I wouldn't do commercial. I’d just do residential.” He told me this the night before. We were at Dorado having a few drinks. He said, “What do you want to talk about tomorrow?” I said, “We interview you before we want to go into a little bit about some of your methods to your madness in commercial pest in DC.” He said, “If I were to do it over again, I wouldn't do commercial.”
Patrick Baldwin: I'm glad you asked him twice, once the night before and once during the interview to make sure he wasn't crazy. I almost fell out of my chair hearing that. He still is going to be the King of Route Density. He does it all over again. It's the same playbook effectively. He's still going to grow that thing so dense. I look forward to watching him do this. I don't know how far along he is or if this is hypothetical.
Paul Giannamore: I wish he wouldn't have told me that the night before because of the look of shock on my face. When he told me that, I literally fell out of my chair. It wasn't nearly as surprising the next day. Tony's noncompete probably comes up in 2023 because we closed in ‘18. In 2023, his noncompete comes up. Tony is in his mid-50s. I would be shocked if he doesn't do it again. This is what he knows. He's done it for 30-some-odd years. Of course, he's going to do it again.
Patrick Baldwin: I know how he's going to pay his technicians.
Paul Giannamore: How?
Patrick Baldwin: Not the way I would.
Paul Giannamore: Hourly?
Patrick Baldwin: Yeah. I don't know where that came from. We caught up with Tony and that's still the thing. I can't wrap my head around paying hourly. Maybe I'm so far ingrained in the South. I can't do it. He calls me lazy. Go ahead, Tony, I'm lazy but I'm a production guy.
Paul Giannamore: Those hourly versus production pay schedules, that's the modern Civil War in the United States between North and South. Up in the north, that's all we see.
Patrick Baldwin: I'm thinking where Virginia falls in that Mason-Dixon Line.
Paul Giannamore: It’s below the Mason-Dixon.
Patrick Baldwin: That's what I thought. Tony is wrong. I just want to hear that. Seth, you got something to say. Go ahead.
Seth Garber: I'll tell you this, we build them both ways all the time. We build them hourly. We build them production. We build a combination. An owner has to decide on the way that he wants to manage his company is the right decision. Hourly, you have to worry about overtime. Production, you have to worry about your company culture and if you're pushing these guys too hard. You have to worry about how you handle vacation and how you handle some of these other things. We build them both ways all the time. I've seen both worked out incredibly successfully.
Paul Giannamore: Patrick, Ken Fox, who was on POTOMAC TV, won the commercial business in the mid-Atlantic. He was production. Some of his technicians were making $130,000 or $140,000 a year production running those commercial routes there in the mid-Atlantic. He's based in Philly, that's hourly central. You see all types of presets come in.
Seth Garber: I think about all of our clients in the Northeast, they're pretty split between production and hourly. If we boiled it down and took a look at their overall profitability, they probably are some of the most profitable companies in the country. Regardless, either way, the complaints are the same as you'd expect. It’s exactly what I described, it's hourly. We have to worry about overtime. Maybe we need a couple more technicians.
On the production side, it's, “Are we giving them enough percentage because other guys are coming in and offering a higher hourly rate and these guys are doing the math all the time.” When I look at the bottom line of these companies, they're probably the most profitable in the entire country. Regardless, it's pretty interesting.
Patrick Baldwin: I know you went both ways, Seth. Let’s go down this rabbit trail for a second. I didn’t think we’d go here. You have roughly 30 consulting clients if I remember right. Have you done that as a project where you take one on and say, “We're going to go from production to hourly or the other way.”
Seth Garber: We have. As a matter of fact, for the customers we work with, probably six of them, we've made the transition from either A) hourly into production or B) we had a compliance-related issue where they were paying them a salary and we've had to move into production. We've had to work through all of the nuances from, how do you deploy this to your technicians? How do you keep them motivated? What questions are the technicians going to ask? How do you show them that in week 1, week 2, and week 3 they're going to make more money?
Potentially, in week 4, how do you create the hedge moving into the new month so they feel good about how much money they're going to make? We're working on one in one of the Florida markets. The interesting thing is in the Florida market, the one we dealt with got hit badly by the hurricane right after making this transition. It opened a new bag of questions, which I found interesting. We're a couple of weeks through it and it's worked out well for them, for both the employee as well as the company.
Patrick Baldwin: Can you look at the payplans and say, “This one makes the company more profitable and puts more money in the technician’s pockets.”
Seth Garber: Depending on the segmentation of services and the way that they are charging for services, if we break it down, we can get pretty close to making that decision. Anytime we shift to production, the first question is, can we increase the level of production, reduce the amount of hours these guys are working based on motivation, and be able to pay them a little bit more than they're currently making? In some cases, a lot more.
If we cannot but we still want to move to production, one of the methodologies that we found effective is we're developing technician report cards based on other criteria that we tied to a bonus structure and that tends to work well. Now, the technicians are motivated by things they love. There's a variety of things we add to them, it may be things that they love to do versus things that we force them to do. We tie some type of financial compensation to it. We force the results of their day-to-day activities into what we're looking for to help the business be better.
Patrick Baldwin: You’ve learned it here first, production is the way.
Paul Giannamore: Until you sell your business and then most of the acquirers will change it to hourly anyway, Patrick.
Patrick Baldwin: Terminix didn't.
Paul Giannamore: Terminix and Orkin, especially in the south, tend to keep things on production for the most part. A lot of the other companies, I have seen them move. If you take a look at Orkin, they might have 33 or 34 different pay schemes in the United States across various regions. All of these companies, with different regional flair to it based on the cost of living and so on and so forth, are attempting to harmonize into one standard.
A lot of this is driven by some of the hardcore Leftist states of California with wage and hour-type issues. The bigger firms’ deeper pockets are concerned about that stuff. Especially now, it's more acute. I hear it a lot with what's going on in COVID. We've had a lot of people working remotely. Somebody works in Florida but moved back to Massachusetts with their parents or whatever during COVID, for example.
I realized that might not be a field working employee, it's a back office. Now, they're focused on harmonizing these plans to jive with labor law. That move will continue. Overall, based on what I could see, the dramatic drift over the last two decades in this industry has been to hourly as opposed to production, Patrick, both as far as the large companies as well as the small and mid-sized businesses. Is it still the best?
Patrick Baldwin: It is still the best but that caused a bunch of riffs on your end as companies go to sell and they have to convert their technicians over.
Paul Giannamore: I got to be honest, that is almost a non-issue. If somebody is on production and an acquirer is acquiring that business, if they're doing it right, they've done a lot of research on the front end so they know exactly, “Patrick, you're making $61,000 per year on average production. We're going to impute what that is on an hourly basis.” 40 hours a week plus a certain amount of overtime. You’re working production. A lot of times, folks that are on production have tracked the hours as well. You know how many hours these guys are working. You can impute that sort of stuff.
In my twenty years in the space, I have not had one single issue with a conversion with an employee base being converted from production to hourly or vice versa upon an acquisition. Quite frankly, I don't see any difference when I look across production-based companies versus hourly-based in terms of profitability and employee tenure. It's almost like if you remove the fact that they're hourly-based or production-based, it's almost impossible to tell the difference. If I didn't tell you how the employees were compensated, it'd be impossible for you tell.
Patrick Baldwin: It sounds like a challenge.
Paul Giannamore: In my mind, this is my opinion, a lot of this, when I deal with these owners that have set up these companies, you have the actual mechanics by which employees are paid but then you also have the culture of how the company functions. Sometimes when people have problems with certain forms of compensation, it's probably that form of compensation and more how they've established the culture in the business in order to operate within those confines. I'd be interested, Seth, if you have an opinion on that.
Seth Garber: Agree, it's probably the number one thing. We did a conversion where a Texas-based company were paying everyone hourly and we converted them to production and we did it well. The gap that we faced was that the majority of their technicians were guys who greatly cared about their job, cared about taking care of the customer, and weren't motivated by working faster or harder.
They wanted to do a great job from a service standpoint. In that scenario, we first made the conversion. We lost a couple of technicians because they felt like production was commissioned. The culture of the organization was always to take care of the customer first, that was the way they built the business and they did a good job.
What the company ends up doing is that we put in guarantees as part of production. It was your route equals, and I'll make up a number, $200,000. We're going to guarantee you that you're going to make $50,000 this year. As your route grows, you'll continue to make more money. That was one of the ways that we solved the cultural issue.
I would tell you, Paul, I would agree 100% that the companies that want to push production and get these $30,000 routes, they're also the same companies that tend to look for the more aggressive technician. They're also asking their technicians to sell. They're also asking their technicians to door hang and a variety of other things. That culture works well. They probably have a big and intense sales culture as well.
On the other side, for the ones that are highly service-focused or highly focused on these specialty services, it doesn't seem to make a ton of sense because you're pushing a technician whose personality tends to be caring, compassionate, and service-oriented to more of an aggressive approach. It is a cultural thing. It might be the number one reason that companies are successful or aren't successful with making that transition.
Paul Giannamore: I will tell you, Patrick, on the topic of production versus hourly, if you remember the discussion with Matt Brill that we had in the Atlantis sessions. It was a mosquito business and they had 150 or 160 employees, most of whom were seasonal. I remember they switched from hourly to production because they had an issue with “time theft”, which is the first time that I'd heard that term.
In that particular case, because a lot of these people were seasonal, they weren't part of that business, per se. They were seasonal workers coming in. It came down to monetary incentives, which is like, “Go out and do these services. This is what you're going to get paid.” It was a lot easier to police that. When you get a tight-knit culture of trust, it's a little bit different.
Patrick Baldwin: One of the things I still can't wrap my head around in paying production, and we have talked about this in one episode, was when, Seth, you were saying, “They have a $20,000 route.” As that route grows, you will continue to make more money based on production commission. It's when you split that route and maybe you go from 10 to 11 and now you take a little bit of pie from all the other guys and you build a new route. Now, it does pull their payback. We talked about it in terms of entitlement, production, and commission. I can see maybe a way around that hourly but in production, it is what it is.
Seth Garber: We're doing one of those projects. That was something that came up. The same company I'm referring to went through the same thing because the company is expanding incredibly quickly. One of the questions that came up was that exactly. I'm going to build my route to $25,000 or $30,000, you're then going to split my route, and I'm going to make less money. One of the models that we have agreed on as a test is that every time that route splits, we increase the commissionable percentage of that technician.
What we're looking at is if that route splits, and I'm going to make up a number, we will increase your commission in perpetuity by 1% every time your route splits. In this model, we had some different components. Now the technicians are incentivized to help these routes split faster over time. We're about four months into it. We've had eight splits on their route so far. So far, it's worked out well. Eight splits across the organization.
Patrick Baldwin: If I understood what you said, you'll take the percentage of production commission up whenever they split the route.
Seth Garber: Correct.
Patrick Baldwin: What's the ceiling? What's the top end of that?
Seth Garber: That's the math we've been working on. Without putting out this company's information, we're working towards a time-based plus split number. We will ultimately get to somewhere in that 24% to 26% cap on these technicians, which is pretty neat. The way that we're positioning it because this is all fairly new is after the splits take place is that we're going to align it with a career pathing methodology that says you can now choose to move up in the organization if you'd like to or if you're happy at the top percentage, you can continue to capture this income level. You can be a great technician.
We're months into this and it seems to be working pretty well. The handoff is you get to a certain percentage. The organization has the right career pathing method. For the people that are motivated to grow their career, which isn't everyone, now they have a way to go to that next stage in their career. That's what we've been working on. It's an interesting topic to bring up.
Patrick Baldwin: Staying in terms of compensation. I love when you can explain compensation clearly. You said that you do have clients or you know people that have production and hourly commission, this hybrid model. If I want to be able to explain your compensation well to a technician, is it still easy to understand and explain?
Seth Garber: No. I'll tell you where we walk into those problems. It's the states that Paul had mentioned, the states that have all these different labor rules related to compensation. They've all been developed in order to support those. California is the toughest. It's incredibly difficult. The technician goes, “How do I get paid? If I don't get to this, then you're going to pay me that. If I do this, I'm also going to get this.” They get confused. Where ultimately we take advantage at our client side is a lot of these acquisitions we're seeing that is happening in different parts of the country is some of the large acquires are creating incredibly complex compensation plans to make the numbers match.
Patrick Baldwin: I don’t like it.
Seth Garber: I'm not a big fan. The easier the better.
Patrick Baldwin: Seth, we weren't planning on talking about this but we're going deep down this trail of culture. One that stuck out to me was when you and I were sitting down for lunch with someone else in the pest control industry on our break and all of a sudden, this line comes up and it was a tech. You caught the person and said, “What did you say?” You remember the specifics of what we were talking about with senior management and service management.
Seth Garber: The context of that discussion came back to how we retain our top talent. The previous to that question was posed, “We had a service manager who we love. He takes great care of the customers. He's incredibly good with our team members. He's probably going to leave the company.” From there, there was a tech that was going to also leave who took care of the customers and it was great. That comment of just tech came out.
The context around it was retention, saving top talent. I had to take a step back when I heard the term just a tech. To me, that becomes indicative of culture as a whole. If we're focused on our employee retention but we're referring to the person who's arguably the most important person for the business, are they just anything? Do they have a name? The question I asked is, what is their name? To me, it was an eye-opening question. Paul, we've been talking about compensation and we've been talking about company culture. What would be your thoughts around that?
Paul Giannamore: Back when we did a five-year advisory stint for Scotts Miracle-Gro company, at the time, they own Scotts LawnService. They did $250 million in customer revenue. I remember traveling around the country with Peter Corta, who is the president of Scotts at the time. One of these days, Patrick, we're going to get him on The Buzz. I've often said that he's in the top five of the most capable managers I've ever had an opportunity to work with. I think very highly of the guy.
When we traveled around the country, he would go out with technicians to see what was going on. He used to follow the technician up to the house. I remember him talking to customers saying, “These guys are our heroes. These are the guys that are running this business. It's because of these guys and gals that I have a job. They're putting food on my table.” It's a different way how he dealt with it. He would never say just a tech. I can see him sitting at a table saying, “Our heroes, the men, and women that go out every day. Rain, sleet, shine, or whatever to serve these customers, these are the guys that make it happen.” It’s different.
Patrick Baldwin: I had this epiphany years ago, Bobby called me out on it. Seth this is funny but we were talking about Enterprise Rent-A-Car and that's where my background was before the mortgage industry. In that Enterprise, it's a dog-eat-dog world, and it's management trainee, management assistant, branch manager, and area manager, MT, MA, branch manager, and area manager. It's like, “I'm going to use you to get my next promotion. If you're below me, I'm going to burn the crap out of you and then I'm going to get popped or promoted.” I was like, “I don't care.” It’s a competitive nature.
It's probably that mindset that came out of Enterprise ingrained in me that's why I did come out of college. I'm going to use all my peers to get promoted. When I got into bugs and pest control, it was like, “My technicians are there to support. My service manager is there to support. The admin is there to support the owner.” Bob was like, “You got it all upside down.” If it wasn't for the technicians, none of us would have a job.
Paul Giannamore: The way that you talk about it, your team members, of course, is important. As my mom always used to say, “Actions speak louder than words.” If I hear one idiot say the word servant leader one more time, I'm going to punch somebody in the face. when I'm talking to these business owners all the time, every one of them says, “Servant leader.” I don't even know what the hell that is but everyone's a servant leader whether it's somebody at Terminix, Orkin, Rentokil, or EPS. These guys are all servant leaders. Yet, a lot of them are doing shitty jobs. What can I say?
Patrick Baldwin: I love how you call on certain buzzwords like thought leader and servant leader.
Paul Giannamore: Another word is d'oeuvres. How many serial entrepreneurs do we know? Everyone's a serial entrepreneur, they're a thought leader, they're this, and they’re that, a servant leader.
Patrick Baldwin: You're calling out servant leaders now. You hear that word and you're going to throw a punch on someone, Paul. I love it.
Paul Giannamore: I hear servant leaders so much. I don't even know what it is. It's lost. I'm sure that whoever the first person said it probably was a servant and leader. Now, everyone's a servant leader,
Seth Garber: Patrick, you said that there are all these different thresholds that companies hit at different sizes from a revenue standpoint. I'll tell you this, one of the things that drive culture better than anything else and help accelerate growth in the organizations when they're in that $4 million to $5 million range is when that CEO or the head of that company begins to understand his people at the ground level.
Patrick and I have talked about this. When that CEO can walk up to his technician and it's not technician one but it's Michael and he understands that what Michael likes to do is Michael likes to farm. In the coming weekend, he heard through the grapevine that Michael needs to work on a fence for his house. When that CEO can walk up to him and say, “Michael, you did a great job in production this month. Instead of pushing you hard, why don't you take an extra day off and go fix the fence on your house to keep your wife happy.”
We challenge the CEOs that we work with to learn things like these. You will never see a better level of production from a team when that level of engagement happens. I will tell you, it's an easy way to grow these companies because now everyone buys in. I'll tell you where this all came from. A couple of years back when I was the head of revenue at ID Plans, I had a chance to meet with a guy named David Jenkins, he's the CEO of Conservice. They're one of the biggest utility companies in the US. They were a partner of ours.
I was out in Utah and it was a Friday and I remember him saying to me, “Seth, it's time to go do payroll.” I'm going to make up a number but I think they had 1,000 employees at the time and most of them worked in the building. I said, “You have to go to payroll.” He goes, “Yeah.” I looked at him cross-eyed and he said, “Check this out.” Every single Friday or during the pay period, he walked around with a cart. He would walk up to every employee, hand them their paycheck, and hand them a candy bar, every single one. He spent his Fridays doing that.
That's probably an extreme example. The level of culture that I saw in that office, I had never seen anything like it before. His expertise was in HR. Every employee's desk had the number employee they were and what day they started with the company. It was right on their desk. It changed my entire personal perspective watching a large company CEO operate that way. I bet he's still doing it. I bet he's still passing out paychecks to 1,000 employees on a Friday as silly as it sounds.
Paul Giannamore: Along with candy bars?
Seth Garber: With a candy bar.
Paul Giannamore: Did you notice anything about the level of diabetes or obesity in the office?
Patrick Baldwin: If a CEO knew the person's name, knew their spouse's name, and what drove them, instead of saying, “Did you hit your 95% in production this month?” or, “Do you need to go sell another $2,000 to hit your quota?” It was driven by the fact, “This is what that can do for you and your life. This is what it can free up. Go take some time off to go take care of the things that you need to take care of at home because you've been working hard for us.” Even though it was hypothetical, that personal touch could make a world of difference.
Seth Garber: We do this in different parts of the country. Some of these people that you see are pretty prolific on Facebook talking about the culture that we're fortunate enough to work with. They're focused on it. The amount of increase in production and the growth rates that they're seeing due to the engagement of their culture is unreal. The other side to it is the people that don't like that in the organization leave.
Patrick Baldwin: From a personal development standpoint, it affects them. You told me about someone that was the opposite of the person I experienced. I was like, “You're telling me that that's how they were driven, very regimented, top line, bottom line, and that's it. That's not the person I met.” He goes, “It's been a work in progress.” I never would have known.
Seth Garber: It's not for everybody. It makes a lot of sense for the people that want to build these things long-term with the deep company culture.
Paul Giannamore: We sold a business to Viking ago called Cavanaugh. I was in New Jersey. Patrick, I mentioned to you that was one of our first clients. We finally sold the business. Unfortunately, Ralph, the patriarch of the family, had passed away. His family sold the business. He died in September 2020. Within the first six months of working with him, we've done some financial analysis. We did a preliminary evaluation.
We were thinking about what to do with the business. It’s an S-election because it was a C-corp and all sorts of things. We're doing some planning. He had a higher level of turnover. I made a simple suggestion. I said, “Why don't you put together a calendar and pass it off to every one of your team members and say, ‘I got breakfast slots, lunch slots, and an occasional dinner slot. Put your name down and I'm taking you out.’” Some can do it on the weekend and some can do it at nights depending if they have kids and all sorts of jazz. He did that.
It took him almost four months to go through all of it and meet with everyone but he eventually sat down and broke bread with every one of his team members. After he did it, he's like, “I'm going to start doing this every year.” I don't know if he kept up with it. It was a valuable exercise that is simple to do. As I'm talking about this, I should be doing this with my staff. I don't do this. I try to avoid certain people on my staff when I eat. I should be doing this myself. I learned something. I'm going to take everyone out for a one-on-one.
Seth Garber: I'll tell you what's interesting, Paul. I know that he's passed away but I bet if you went back and looked at that business, I bet you would see people that have been with that business for 10 years, 15 years, and 18 years. Based on that recommendation you had given them a long time ago, I bet it changed people's lives.
Paul Giannamore: You know what, Seth, I'm going to find this out. I'm going to investigate this.
Patrick Baldwin: Seth, you've hired someone for your staff. I don't know if you said it was hell or high water or what the deal was but you're in it for the long haul. You've hired this person. I don't even know if you have any exceptions to it. You said, “As long as you don't go and do some felony or something, you're on my staff forever.” You've implemented that methodology or philosophy into some of your consulting clients as well. Amanda is awesome. I can see why you would never let Amanda go. Paul tried to put Amanda on staff at the shindig. He was trying to poach her.
Paul Giannamore: There were certain negotiations and discussions taking place.
Patrick Baldwin: It’s still ongoing.
Paul Giannamore: It was the Mexican. It was largely run by the Mexican.
Patrick Baldwin: I can see that.
Seth Garber: I heard the outcome of that. She started laughing and told me the real outcome and thanked me working over here.
Paul Giannamore: She didn't take the Mexican’s offer?
Seth Garber: No.
Patrick Baldwin: I don't want to imagine what was said. As soon as you said, I was like, “There's no way that would ever work for a technician.” I could never hire a technician and say, “As long as you don't suck, you will stay.”
Seth Garber: I should probably provide some context. I made a decision. We've got eight people on our team over here on the consulting/Pest Daily side. I made a decision that hiring someone is an incredibly important thing but it's not for the business, it's for their life. If I do the right job and I feel like I identify the right person, I'm going to commit a lot of time to these people. What if I could develop a process where they never have to look for a job ever again?
The analogy I used with our clients is we're on a train ride and the train ride is going to a destination and I'm driving the train. That train might stop and it might be time for people to get off. What if I don't determine when they get off? What if they choose to make that journey or they choose to get off at the time that makes sense for them? Either is okay. I've been working hard on it. What we tell our team members when they come to work with us is, “You’re welcome to the company. You have a job for the rest of your life. You can stay as long as you want.”
Paul Giannamore: “You know got a job in Sweden or France.”
Seth Garber: The way I look at it is that if I've done a good enough job and I'm going to commit enough time to hire them, they can stay. If it's not the right fit, then they can make that decision. What I found is that it eliminates the stress from someone worrying about messing up. It eliminates the stress of wondering if they're going to get whatever other stresses they have or if they're performing at the right level.
I've started to know the cultural shift within our company to where people want to do well. They have the desire to help the company grow because we are okay with them making mistakes and we truly are. I can go way into this whole belief system. We've tried to put it into some of the pest control companies. It's working okay at a leadership level. I don't know how well it's going to work at the technician level yet.
I do believe that if it's done in maybe some type of a hybrid way, we can avoid a technician wanting to jump ship over $1 or $5 an hour because they're more committed to the organization. Paul's probably pulling the rest of his hair out going, “What are you saying? Are you saying they could work for you forever?”
Paul Giannamore: You assess a potential team member before you make the hire. You spend the time. You hire somebody, you invest in training, and all sorts of stuff. As an employer, you hope that they're going to stay around in perpetuity or for a long period of time. It's expensive to go out and find somebody else and retrain them.
I'm not understanding what you're doing that might be outside of what you would normally be doing. You're saying save for committing some a capital crime and I'm not going to let you go. What if I work for you, Seth, and I start to go, “I got job security. I'm in France now. You can't do anything with me.” I am taking Mondays off, all that stuff that happens when people have relatively guaranteed employment. I'm wondering, to what extent does that safety net exist?
Seth Garber: That's a good question and I've thought about it a lot. This isn't new. We've been doing this for over two and a half years. What I saw is that people have become committed to doing a good job and they've been committed to the initiatives that we put in place but I've yet to have to deal with that type of stuff. I've had to yet have to deal with someone taking advantage of our situation. The reality is if someone goes to France and they don't call me for three days, a week, 10 days, or whatever, ultimately, we probably have to let them go. Conceptually, this approach we develop from a cultural standpoint is inspiring to people and we try hard to live by it.
Patrick Baldwin: What are the conversations? How are they different than if you have to have a heart-to-heart? They know firing is not on the table. It's a different conversation, I would imagine.
Seth Garber: It leads to a less guarded and more authentic discussion. I'll give you an example. We make mistakes all the time. We had a mistake. I lost a lot of money on a deal. It’s 100% outside of my control. It was a poor decision. It was made by one of my team members. We promised something that was outside of our scope and use it to a client. It was outside of our scope. I had to bring in contractors and get the job done. It cost me $8,000 or so.
The reality was we shouldn't have made that conversation. You know who the team member is. When I approached the team member, I said, “The language that we use with the customer, create a promise in the eyes of this customer and that promise ended up costing us a lot of money, $8,000.” When she looked at me, she said, “How would I improve so I don't do this again?” It was a simple discussion. I was able to tie it back to the scope of the project and how we have to be careful of our language track when we talk to people.
“It’s not a problem. We can take care of that,” is much different than, “This is outside of the scope of what our company can do. We're going to end up having to talk to somebody else and be able to provide a proposal to you.” The intent was to say, “We can take care of it for you.” The understanding from the client side was, “We're going to do this for you.” It gave me an opportunity. The conversations become learning opportunities versus a level of being scared. This is a utopia discussion. In most companies, this is crazy. I'm trying to create my little utopia world over here.
Patrick Baldwin: A lot of times, in hiring, that comes out of desperation. It’s like, “We're short-handed. Someone just quit. Someone's got fired.” Whatever the case is. How can you make these long-term decisions? If you go with this philosophy, how can you do it quickly and flush out all the bad bits of the hires?
Seth Garber: That's a good statement but the question isn't necessarily that it's a fire and we have to hire. That creates a challenge within the organization. People have to be focused and patient in hiring the right people no matter how long it takes. I have a client, they have roughly 80 routes. They need probably another 9 to 10 technicians right now to handle their workload. They've bought into this idea of patience and hiring.
A technician comes in with ten years experience, not a culture fit, and they don't get hired. Employee retention is incredible because of this thing. When we started working with this customer, they needed about 15 to 18 technicians. They would hire anybody. Retention was a nightmare. They're always hiring new people. The turnover was crazy.
Since they slowed down and started hiring slower and looking for the right skillsets, and they've brought in a recruiter who brought some of this methodology, the results have been better from a retention standpoint. If they have to spread out, call it $1.5 million dollars across all their technicians, they can take care of that. As a new technician comes in, is a cultural fit, and that's going to stay longer, there's a better chance that the time and effort it takes to train that person is worth it.
Paul Giannamore: You guys noticed the employment market changing down in Florida at all?
Seth Garber: Yeah.
Paul Giannamore: Is it easier to hire employees for these pest control companies?
Seth Garber: It's getting a lot easier across the country, not even just in Florida. The only markets that we're seeing struggling are the Metro City markets. Within the cities, it’s still been tough. It’s become a lot easier in California, Texas, and Florida. In most markets, that seems to be a lot easier. I don't have the data to back it up other than we're seeing a lot less push on it.
Paul Giannamore: Anecdotally, I'm hearing a lot fewer complaints from business owners. It's also the end of the season so folks are certainly not staffing up now. I've heard a lot fewer complaints, I should say.
Seth Garber: YOn the business functions, it's become easy. On the business side, whether it's sales or in the offices, it's become easy. The large companies outside of our sector, we're starting to see a lot of people come into the job markets. Lots of top performers become available whether they're working for their companies or not. People are getting nervous because of all the talk around the economy. We've been able to hire some top talent in different markets easily.
Patrick Baldwin: Other than the end of the season, why the shift?
Paul Giannamore: We're starting to slowly see demand destruction. The Fed has been hiking into what was already a downturn here in 2022. By 2023, Patrick, I should start to materialize in some labor market slack, at least that's the great hope from the central bank.
Seth Garber: I'm seeing a lot of compensation packages changed with large companies outside of our industry. We're watching sales reps' compensation packages get capped. I've seen it in quite a few markets. It's a great scenario for our clients in our industry.
Patrick Baldwin: The housing market has come to a halt. New home purchases with insurance going up or moving. People are not moving like they were getting into a home. What's the direct effect or indirect effect of that on our industry?
Paul Giannamore: There are a lot of anecdotal war stories that pest control is tied specifically to the real estate market whether it's existing home sales or new home sales. When people move, you move into a new house, you want to get it painted, and do all sorts of stuff, “There are bugs, let me get that taken care of.” For me, it's like a greater discussion, Patrick, on the condition of the US consumer in light of the inflationary pressures.
As we get into Christmas, this is the first time in three years we're having a normal Christmas season. People are going to be traveling. They're going to be spending money. They're going to be attempting to do the things that they need to do in order to spend time with loved ones. When January 2023 comes around, they're going to look at the bank account and say, “Crap.”
For me, it's a lot of bigger issues though than the housing market, Patrick. I don't know if you've been in the markets as of late. Friday was a crazy and interesting day. We had a yield spike. 2 and 5-year yields went up to 2007 highs. We had all sorts of crazy government interventions in the financial markets on Friday due to the fact that the US Treasury market is starting to experience a lot of stress.
We had the Bank of Japan finally intervene in the currency market. New York bought about $30 billion in Japanese yen contracts. We had the Fed whisperer and the Wall Street Journal came out on Friday morning and talked about the fact that there's some debate as to the velocity of acceleration and Fed Funds rates, which made yields fall and the market spiked. Looks like I picked a bad day to be 60% net short in the market.
It's funny to me because the bull case for bonds is that the Federal Reserve pivots on policy into an 8% CPI print. Think about that for a second. Let that sit in. We got an 8% CPI print and the bond bull case, meaning what's bullish for bonds is that the Fed relents entightening. It’s like we live in a bizarro world. When I think about it from an economics perspective, one of the things that could have a sizable impact on the pest control industry is ultimately when we see China pivot from a dynamic zero COVID policy. That's largely kept a cap on crude oil throughout the summer.
You see what's going on in China, right? You go into a Chinese Target or Walmart. All of a sudden, somebody was there who had tested positive for COVID and they locked the doors and you're stuck there for a couple of weeks. You’ve seen these videos. These are some fantastic videos where we got all these Chinese people running for the exit in the supermarket. That's what they do. They lock you in there. You're there for 2 or 3 weeks while you're quarantining. That's the dynamics zero COVID policy. When China ultimately pivots from this COVID policy, it's going to have a potentially huge impact on commodity prices, particularly oil.
Patrick Baldwin: Going which way?
Paul Giannamore: It puts dramatic upward pressure. As you know, Patrick, I am entirely apolitical. I don't think there's a Republican out there that doesn't miss Bill Clinton today when you see what Joe Biden is doing. This guy is draining the strategic petroleum reserve. I'm not a big Trump fan either. I don't like any of these politicians but at least I could understand some of the stuff Trump did.
First off, the US is way over levered like European economies. We got the US commerce with this whole NOPEC bill trying to pick a fight with oil producers. OPEC is sitting back there saying, “If you're going to come up with this extra-judicial legislation and try to hamper what we do, we're going to hang out with the Chinese and the Russians now.” He's picking fights with oil producers. He's draining the petroleum reserves. He's shutting all the options. Every day that goes onm the US has fewer options. 2023 is potentially going to be a difficult year for all.
Patrick Baldwin: Paul, I've been meaning to ask you. Liz Truss made a full 45 days as prime minister over in Britain. Which way are we going with the pound?
Paul Giannamore: it's like all of these economies. Of course, we talked about Japan intervening on Friday. On the one hand, they're doing yield curve control. There buying a bunch of JGBs, which are tenured Japanese sovereign debt. You can save your bond market at the expense of your currency. You can save your currency at the expense of your bond market. You can't do both when you've got a zombified country like Japan. On the one hand, they're buying JGBs.
Of course, the yen goes down to like a 40-year low against the dollar so they’re going out there and buy yen. The same thing in Great Britain, the British pound is on a crash course with destiny. It will be in the nastiest recession in 2023 in my natural life. I always say that policy never trumps markets. It reminds me of when George Soros, in the early 90s, ‘91 or ‘92, the whole “broke the Bank of England.” The UK kind of crashed out of ERM, which is the European Exchange Rate Mechanism.
At the end of the day, they had a particular policy to remain in ERM. Policy can't trump gravity when you got that nasty recession. It pulled them right out of the ERM. That's going to be the same thing. I'm going to be staunchly bearish on the pound below parity and the euro. All these European countries are printing money to pay for energy. They can't print energy so they're printing money to pay for it. It's a bad situation.
Seth Garber: You talked about the European economic market. When the rubber hits the road, all I'm hearing my wife and her friends talk about is the fact that they can fly over to Europe and they can buy the bags and shoes that they want tremendously cheaper than they could. That's probably a good anecdotal way of looking at it, right?
Paul Giannamore: Tell her to wait another 6 or 7 months they’ll be throwing the plane ticket too. It is a bad scene over there. Quite frankly, I don't know what these governments are going to do. When you've got such rapid inflation, when you've got a rigid labor market, and when you've got the cost of energy going up 20X, this is the seed for revolution as it were. Europe's got a lot of problems.
Patrick Baldwin: I don't know if you knew this or not but when I was flying back from PestWorld, I happen to meet Jason Woodbury with Infinite Pest. Seth, you remember this. Hurricane Ian goes through. Jared Borg texts me, “I've got some rangers if you know anyone that needs some rangers.” I texted you being that you're down in that neck of the woods and you asked some people. He connects with Jason. Kyle Woodbury was Jared’s partner there at Pointe. Jason says, “I've got a good friend. He has a big need for some trucks.”
I was able to get Jared and Chaz Hambling connected. They’ve done this whole deal through text messaging, Thompson Street Capital, PestCo purchased Pointe and all of this. You got Jay Keating and Jared Borg. They were able to donate trucks down to another service industry down in Fort Myers. It was awesome. They got to have their first conversation. I hit record after they had already said, “You're the best person in the whole wide world.” I do want to let everyone read this conversation between Jared and Chaz. Before we do that, I want to wish you all a great week. See you next episode.
Seth Garber: Take care.
Paul Giannamore: Sounds good, PB. Let it play.
Jared Borg: Jason Woodbury is my business partner’s little brother. I've known Jason. His kids, we hunted elk together, our families and their families. How do you know Jason?
Chaz Hambling: Jason came to one of our networking groups here in Fort Myers. Jason, Sarah, myself, and Danielle clicked right away. Being that I'm in the pool business and he's in pest control, it's an easy referral for me to help him build his business. We've marketed him to 100% of all of our clients and it's taken off like wildfire for them.
Jared Borg: That's awesome. Jason is a solid guy.
Chaz Hambling: Solid would be an understatement. He is a super guy. He called us right away and it's like, “Chaz, what do you need?” I said, “Me and my family are pretty well taken care of.” He's like, “What do you need business-wise?” I'm like, “Absolutely everything.” He goes, “What are you talking about?”
I said, “Jason, I got four and a half feet of water. My house, my shop, all my trucks, all my trailers, and all my equipment is underwater. I need a truck. Let me rent a truck. Let me borrow a truck. Can I buy a truck? Who do you know that has Ford Rangers? Dakotas, I don't care what they are. I don't care what they look like. I need transportation.” He goes, “Let me get on the phone and I'll be back in touch with you.” I left it at that.
We kept looking at each other. My wife and I were like, “What are we going to do?” We have no vehicles for our employees. We have no vehicles for ourselves. We lost absolutely everything we have except for some TVs that were mounted high on the walls and some clothes that were on the hangers hanging up in the closet. Everything else was underwater.
Jared Borg: What a lousy thing to go through. That's awful. How are you guys now? Where does it stand now?
Chaz Hambling: All four trucks are out on the road. They've been on the road.
Jared Borg: We can talk about the trucks later. Personally, are you guys back in your house?
Chaz Hambling: No. We are camping out. This is the inside of our camper. This is how we’re living, in the backyard. We've been blessed to have a small RV rental business so we had some campers. Unfortunately, they all got wet. We sucked the water out of them and clean them up as best as we could to make them livable for us and our kids. It's a long road to hoe here. Insurance is super slow because of the volume of need here. There are over 389,000 flood claims that were made here in southwest Florida, in Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Bonita, Estero, Pine Island, Sanibel, Captiva, and Fort Myers Beach. Our whole region is decimated.
Jared Borg: That's bonkers. This was the least we could do. This was cool for us. The best part of this is this is our first time meeting and we did this through some text messages and emails. It was cool. We had some trucks that we were about ready to pull out of our fleet. I see this message from Jason. I don't own this business anymore. I used to own it. I own part of it now. I have some private equity partners who you think that's going to get stodgy or they're going to wonder what we're doing.
I sent a quick email and said, “I'm giving some trucks away.” They were like, “Okay.” They didn't know what was going on. We got it all arranged. I sent him a picture afterward, you and your, and I was like, “You guys did the right thing.” They were like, “You gave them away?” We were like, “It's done. That was fast.” It was cool to see that Jason and Enterprise helped us out and the shipping company was fast. I'm glad that went good. That was an easy thing for us to do.
Chaz Hambling: It's an easy thing for you to do. It's a hard thing sometimes for me to understand and accept as a man. Sometimes that we let our head and our ego get in the way. You sit back and you're like, “I'm going to figure this out.” You then realize there's nothing to figure out, it's all gone. What you did and what your people did for me, my wife, our kids, and our four employees was life-saving.
That may sound so cliche and boring but you don't understand when you walk out and everything you own is gone and under twenty minutes. That's how fast the floodwaters came in, twenty minutes. I'm 6’2” and the water was up to my chest in twenty minutes. That's all gone. Where do you start? You have no vehicles that run. You can't get to the grocery store. You can’t get to the hospital. You need a jon boat out here to go anywhere.
I've been at this for 26 years. Never have I ever felt so helpless before in my entire life. Military and civilian life, I've never felt so helpless before. It's a hell that I don't wish upon anybody. Jared, you and your people, you guys were our angels. I mean that in the most sincere way. Your willingness to serve others and help others as a complete stranger, you don't understand what that means to me.
Jared Borg: This is awesome. We're glad to help. We're glad it worked out. That's sweet. I got to spend a special shout-out to my folks at Green Pest in Virginia. They were so good. We said, “Here's what we're doing.” They pulled them out of the field and whip those things up real quick. They're not the nicest trucks but they run and they'll get the job done.
Chaz Hambling: We're still advertising for you so it's Green Pest control. They're still on the trucks.
Jared Borg: I love it. That is awesome.
Chaz Hambling: When the waters receded, we pulled the license plates off our old trucks and slap them on the back of the new ones, and put the registrations in the glove box. I told all my guys and my girls, “If you get pulled over and if there are any questions, you call me immediately on speaker so that we could explain what's going on.”
The structure of my home is still here. It's not livable. It's not inhabitable. One of our girls, Tiffany, lost the structure. The home is gone. It doesn't exist anymore. Physically, it’s gone. To be able to keep her going and have a weekly paycheck and take care of our customers that weren't affected by the storm is huge for her. That's everything for her. God works in mysterious ways. I'm super blessed that you guys were there for us in our biggest need that I've ever had in my professional career. It's absolutely nothing short of a miracle.
Jared Borg: We're humbled and happy to help. That's a cool deal. We're super thankful that Jason put us together. I love that it worked out. I wish you guys the best. That's a lousy thing to go through. I love visiting that part of the country. My family and I spent time down there and so it's hard to see. We love the people down there. Hopefully, at some point, when I'm down there again, I'll come by and give you a handshake and a hug and wish you guys the best.
Patrick Baldwin: He's going to throw you in a truck and make it work.
Jared Borg: We're sending out to clean some pools.
Chaz Hambling: This area is sad that it goes from such a postcard picture area to now everybody's belongings are on the road. Their whole lives, they're sitting in trash piles up on the edge of the road waiting to be picked up. I'm eating my words a little bit as Danielle says. I told them, “This is just another hurricane. We've been through how many of these down here.” Unfortunately, this was the time that they all got it wrong.
Everything showed the storm going north Florida and then it started coming down to Gainesville and then it came down to Tampa. It was like Hurricane Charley. It was going slow in the left lane on the interstate and all of a sudden, they want to exit hard right and that's exactly what it did. It came in and it caught everybody off guard because we were all planning for the storm to go farther north. The people didn't evacuate because every time we get hit by a hurricane, it's never like this.
Jared Borg: We have some good friends that own pest companies closer to Tampa. I kept in close touch with them leading up to that. I’m like, “This is coming. Keep me in touch. If there's anything we can do.” It wasn't until about the day before, I was like, “This is going towards where Jason is at.” We started reaching out to Jason saying, “What's going on? I thought this was going to go north of you.” It was hard to watch. That's not an easy thing to deal with. I feel for you guys. Everyone I know down there, I love people down there, they're all awesome and resilient. You guys will put it back together. You guys will make it through and it'll be better in the end. You'll figure it out. You guys are tough down there.
Chaz Hambling: Now that you got the wheels and you can get to the customers, you can get the jobs done, and you can get the money rolling back in again. We were fortunate enough to have a decent amount of savings to where we were able to pay all of our people. Money does you no good when you can't find the trucks and the equipment that you need to go out and take care of the clients. That's the hard part on swallowing your pride in it and, for me, in this situation. We love those old beat-up Ford Rangers. You call them beat up and we’re like, “We're going to rotate them out here.” I want to come work for you because your top salespeople and your top techs must be driving F-350 Duallys.
Jared Borg: Not quite that nice. We've been through this the last few years. If you asked for anything else, I'd be like, “I don't know if I can help.” It's such a unique situation but everyone in our industry and your industry for the last few years, finding trucks has been so hard. If they are available, it's, “Do you want to pay $10,000 over MSRP?” If it's a used truck, it's going for 2 or 3 times what it used to. I felt your pain. In your situation, for you to find trucks in a timely manner was not happening. We empathize with that and understood that. That's a rough deal. What a cool deal. I'm glad we could jump in and help out.
Chaz Hambling: It's awesome. Sometimes I get a little emotional over this. We're coming down off that high of the adrenaline rush. The storm hitting. Everybody's got to tear all their stuff out and take care of their families and their homes and their businesses. Now, the reality is setting in for a lot of folks. There' are no vehicles here for sale, none.
Jared Borg: It's going to be rough. You have a trailer you can live in. I'm sure there are a lot of people on your street. Your streets are probably pretty quiet these days.
Chaz Hambling: There are tents. You can't find a tent anywhere in this county. People are tenting in the Walmart parking lots. They're attending at Love’s gas stations. They're tenting anywhere they can find a dry patch of grass to sleep. I've seen nothing like this in person in my lifetime. I hope that I never have to see anything like this again.
It's like the Wild Wild West so to speak. Everybody's doing what they can to survive and keep each other fed and take care of one another and take care of our neighbors. Our community has come together. Our neighborhood has come together nicely. In tough times, it’s the measure of a man that comes out and that's what we're recognizing here.
Jared Borg: I feel a little silly talking about trucks because there are a lot of other things people are struggling with right now. I'm glad we could do one little thing to help you guys out.
Chaz Hambling: Your one little thing is a huge safe for us. You're the bottom of the ninth for the World Series. You got one guy to strike out and the base is loaded and you came through clutch for a total stranger. Through that, you've been able to not only help me, my family, and our techs but you also have been able to help out other people. We've been putting food and taking supplies out in the truck as well because there are some areas where there's no help.
Red Cross hasn't gotten to these people yet. We know where they're at because I was born and raised here. As we're going out and doing our route, we're dropping off supplies. Those supplies have been donated from other parts of Florida to us. It's not just about Southwest Florida Pool Pros receiving trucks. It's about the work that we're able to do and provide for others through this tragic situation as well.
Jared Borg: That's awesome. I'm glad they went to a good home. Patrick, was this the easiest job you've ever had?
Patrick Baldwin: Thank you. If I'd hit record five seconds sooner.
Jared Borg: You're blowing it. Come on, you had one job.
Patrick Baldwin: I know, I did. I'm too slow. This is awesome. This is cool. You had to put all this together. It's funny putting it all together. Jared, you reached out to me by text message saying, “If you know anyone, let me know. I've got some trucks ready to go.” I couldn't even put it all together what was going on. You were ready to go and I was like, “No one in the right mind gives away trucks for the last five years. What are you doing?”
I messaged Seth and kept my eyes open especially on social media looking for something. I happen to sit down with Jason at PestWorld. He was filling some of the details on this and telling me, “Jared was giving way trucks. If you took a single dime, he would refuse to give you trucks.” All out of the kindness of your heart delivering everything. This is awesome. Now, what do we call you? St. Jared? Is that right?
Jared Borg: No. That's lame. The cool part is it's fun to be able to help and not have to ask any questions. There's just a need. Jason did such a good job of putting people in place. The coolest part about this is this is my first time speaking with Chaz. We had a group text. I emailed my Enterprise rep and said, “Transfer the titles to this guy.” We found a shipping company. Even those guys, I told them about the situation, and they were like, “We'll get there as quickly as we can.”
Our folks at Green Pest Services in Chantilly were cool about getting those ready to go fast. All I did was send a few text messages. What's so cool about this is that it didn't take a lot of work on our end. It just took a little bit of thought and it all came together. The folks at PestCo were great at letting me this. The folks at Green, I appreciate them stepping up and even Jason being cognizant of what's going on. Sometimes you ask for those things. It's like when I asked you, Patrick, and you're like, “I don't know.” Who knows? You’ll just never know. It's cool that worked out. Super happy about that.
Chaz Hambling: Some things, you just sit back and you're in shock and awe. Many people in the world that we live in and in our country, it's always this, it's always, “What can I do to hurt the other guy? What can I do to raise myself up above everyone else?” This was the case where you sat back, Jared, PestCo, and Green Pest Services, and said, “What can we do to help someone else? What can we do to help raise someone else up?”
For me to be on the receiving end of that, I feel like I hit the lottery. No joke, I hit the lottery. Not from a financial standpoint. I feel like I hit the lottery because I was able to continue the mission of what we do with our small business but that was only through you, your team, your selflessness, and you're willing to help and serve others. That has a higher value than any monetary dollar amount that you could possibly put together.
Jared Borg: I appreciate that. I wish you guys the best. You're in a tough spot. You guys will get through it because you're tough. That’s a lousy thing to go through. I'm glad we were able to connect. This was perfect.
Chaz Hambling: Thank you.
Patrick Baldwin: Hopefully, you’ll talk in the future other than text messages.
Chaz Hambling: Absolutely.
Jared Borg: Chaz, next time I'm down there, and we love Captiva in that area, I’ll for sure stop by and say hi.
Chaz Hambling: It's going to be several years. The bridges are being rebuilt. The islands are decimated, unfortunately. I am coming up to Hampton Roads, Virginia. I'll probably be stopping in to visit you before you make it down here.
Jared Borg: You should say hi to the folks at Green Pest, they would love that.
Chaz Hambling: I got some stuff planned and in the works for that.
Jared Borg: I appreciate it. Thanks for doing this. Patrick, you're the best.
Patrick Baldwin: No. You all are the best. I just wanted to induce the two of you.
Jared Borg: That’s wild.
Patrick Baldwin: Bless you both. This is awesome. Thanks again for doing this.
Jared Borg: Thanks, Patrick. Thanks, Chaz.
Chaz Hambling: Thank you, Jared, for everything.
Jared Borg: You bet. God bless you guys.
Dylan Seals: I want to remind you to go ahead and subscribe to The Boardroom Buzz. We've got some incredible episodes coming up that you're not going to want to miss. Also, if you've enjoyed the podcast, please go to the Apple Podcast app and leave us a short review. We'd love to hear from you. Thanks so much again for reading and we'll see you next episode.
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Ken Fox - Ken Fox of Presto Pest Control | Off The Record With Paul Giannamore
Matt Brill – past episode
Apple Podcast – The Boardroom Buzz