Amy Chapman, national account manager for Corteva Agrisciences’ urban pest business, knows a thing or two about award-winning customer service. During her 23-year career with the company, she was honored with its Pinnacle Award in 2014 and 2017 for her excellent customer and industry service. This year, she received the National Pest Management Association’s (NPMA’s) Women of Excellence Award.
1. How did your career path lead to pest control?
While at Clemson University, I took on a summer internship with [Corteva Agrisciences’ parent company] DowDuPont for a marketing research project. I returned to Clemson and received a degree in marketing in December 1994.
I was asked to interview for a second internship with Dow; it was launching a new product, the Sentricon System. I began my pest control internship in January 1995, setting up all the test sites for Sentricon in South Carolina. I was responsible for installing all sites, training companies on software that supported Sentricon, and gathering all the data reports. Fast-forward 23 years, and I am still part of the same team. It’s been an awesome career!
2. You’re known for your ability to mentor interns and new hires; many have gone on to leadership positions of their own. What advice do you have for employees who want to further their careers but are just starting out?
I would challenge anyone to always keep learning. We have so many resources available today to learn. Buy a book on a topic that helps you hone a skill you lack. If you don’t like to read, listen to podcasts. If you don’t like to listen to people on a podcast, go to a seminar on a topic that interests you. You’ll make connections that are applicable and can lead to an idea that changes your career path.
3. As an active member of the NPMA’s Professional Women in Pest Management group, what can women in the pest management industry do to ensure their personal and professional success?
Professionally, I challenge women to view this industry as one with huge opportunities. This job is much more than coming face-to-face with a pest. Personally, women must no longer buy in to the adage that “you can do it all, and do it all perfect each and every day.” Women have to give themselves permission to be human and make mistakes. I challenge women to support the other women in their offices. Women supporting women can change the world.
4. Satisfied customers are key to a successful business. What steps should pest management professionals take to offer stellar customer service?
We’ve got to put the human element back in customer service. We all want to text an answer, email an invoice or send a customer to a phone queue where they get to wait their turn. The companies that will thrive in the future will be savvy at identifying their customer bases and aligning their customer service to accommodate.
5. You have been a liaison between Corteva and the NPMA’s Leadership Development Group (LDG) for more than a decade, and you volunteer at Clemson University. Why is it important to take the time to give back?
We are all so blessed, and as blessed people, I feel we are called to give more than we receive. I also find when I give, I learn. The NPMA LDG has helped me meet so many people I would never have had the honor to know without this partnership. I see the future of our industry in the hands of amazing people.