Watch Your Speed pt.2

Your job, and your passion, and your career is working in the pest management industry. Mine, too. Obviously.

We are tasked with driving a company vehicle to customer locations each day. Our employers trust that we will be safe and courteous in that 6000 pound vehicle. Our clients probably don’t care about our driving habits, or do they? Think about that last sentence for a minute.

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Our customers chit chat with us while servicing the accounts. In the moment, all that matters is that we are getting the pest issue solved. Mr. Customer is familiar with the company logo. It is on our vehicle, on the stationary, on a billboard, and the customer will recognize it around town. It’s something he has come to know and trust when doing business with us.

When in a company vehicle, we are advertising for our employer, or for ourselves, if we own our business. The kind of driver we are, makes an impression on current, potential, and even former, customers. Company managers have been known to take a drive in plain cars, to see how the employees are behaving on the highway. Following the speed limit, and using proper etiquette for driving, is key. Customers want to know that their pest management professional is being safety conscious in all aspects of the work. That includes driving.

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I frequently log A LOT of highway miles. This particular day was no different. I had a 3 hour drive from home to an account – a drive I make every week. After the work was done, I headed home, driving through a large city. I’ll admit, I habitually drive 2-over the speed limit, and was still getting passed by many drivers who were in a hurry. (I can only guess.. maybe someone needed a bathroom break)

I was being followed by a high-rise pick-up truck. A little TOO close. This vehicle behind me kept getting closer to my bumper, then backing off some. I had been trying to pass a semi-truck, whose driver couldn’t make up his mind how fast to go.

When I could finally move back to the right hand lane, this rude driver who had been behind me, went zooming past. Middle fingers in the air. Several “words” went through my head, and a few came out of my mouth. (No one will know what those were except me.) I could have returned middle fingers, but decided against the gesture.

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The name of the company I work for is emblazoned on 3 sides of my vehicle. Other drivers could have witnessed this exchange. They could be customers- current or potential. My physical reaction to rude drivers gets noticed by everyone on the road. My behavior reflects on me, and I would like that reflection to be a happy one.

Published by Melisa Arnold, A.C.E.

My career in pest management began while working in a flour mill as the “in-house” technician in 2008. I am certified in multiple states including a DOT CDL/HazMat. I began working full time as a fumigation-pest control tech in 2010. I achieved my Associate Certified Entomologist (ACE) in 2018. I have a Master Tech certification from Kansas State University/Kansas Pest Control Association. I hold a Bat Management certification from NWCOA. Every day, I realize how much I DON’T KNOW. My goal for this blog is to share my every day experiences from the field and to make us all think outside the box for solutions to make pest control make sense.

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