Schopen’s 2018 year in review


December 31, 2018


Pete Schopen hangs with AzPPO folks. PHOTO: PETE SCHOPEN

My wife still puts together the daily deposits for our company. Recently, she was filling out the deposit slips for Nov. 5, and it took her four hours. Four hours for one day’s worth of worked clients! I couldn’t believe it.

I was happy, but Tami was giving me dirty looks for not ordering the remote banking check scanner from the bank. I still view our company as a “mom-and-pop,” but a four-hour deposit ($16Gs, for those of you keeping track at home) boggles my mind. I really feel blessed.

2018 has been amazing at Schopen Pest Solutions [spoiler alert]:

  • We grew by 27 percent.
  • We hosted an open house at our new building.
  • We are in the process of opening up our retail shop.
  • I’ve met some amazing pest pros in Arizona, Nevada and New Mexico.
  • I hired seven new employees.

Here is a breakdown, month by month:


  • I was invited to speak at a special gathering of the Arizona Pest Professional Organization (AzPPO). Program Chair Fred Willey put together three meetings — January, May and October — for business pros, and he asked me to be the moderator.
  • January was the last month in which we did not hit six figures … until this month. We shattered our previous best January with a $106,000 month!


  • I was invited to speak at the New Mexico Pest Management Association, along with fellow pest pro Josh Alpert. Alan Feuer headed up the event, and I had a blast.
  • We held an open house for our new 8,000-square-foot facility. McHenry Mayor Wayne Jett and more than 100 community leaders, business people and other dignitaries showed up.


  • I had an amazing adventure in Las Vegas, Nev., while attending a business seminar hosted by Paul Bello. I met some energetic entrepreneurs and visited the Hoover Dam. I had a couple of meals with Larry Cash from Estrella Mountain Pest Control, talking shop.
  • We hired two new technicians and one new office person, preparing for the spring.


  • We hired another office staff member and another technician.
  • We started providing health insurance for employees.
  • Record snowfall made exterior treatments tough. We had snow on the ground 14 out of the 30 days in the month!


  • We hired a billing director and another technician.
  • We put a human resources consultant on retainer.
  • Our eldest son, Trey, started working for Schopen Pest Solutions during his college break.
  • I traveled again to Phoenix, Ariz., for AzPPO’s second business seminar.


  • I had too many irons in the fire, and needed to resign from the board of the Illinois Pest Control Association. They’re great people to work with, but they needed someone more dependable than me.
  • We had to scramble to find a new workers’ compensation provider. Our previous insurance company dumped us after one incident.


  • We hired another new technician.
  • I let our employees do all the work for the first time in my company’s history. I only visited one client all month.


  • The business ran out of money. I always keep a lot of cash in the bank for surprises, but we ran out due to small projects at our new building and the new employee health insurance package. I used a substantial amount of my $100,000 line of credit.


  • One of my technicians quit. I decided against hiring a replacement because we were so close to winter.


  • Money-wise, it was the second-best month in Schopen Pest Solutions’ history.
  • I flew to Phoenix and spoke at AzPPO for a third visit. I received great feedback from business owners.
  • The first-ever Schopen Pest Solutions Halloween party was a lot of fun. (I was a walking taco.)


  • We had to repair some plumbing due to the building’s flat roof and sewer system.
  • Techs complained personal items were missing out of their trucks, so we installed seven security cameras.
  • At Tami’s, um, request, we ordered and set up remote banking from our shop. Now we can scan and deposit checks in five minutes instead of four hours.
    We held the Second Annual Schopen Chili Cook-off.


  • I took a long cruise to Mexico with my family.
  • We opened our retail store.
  • I set the goal for 2019 at $2.4 million, plus whatever we sell in the retail store.

I hope everyone reaches their 2019 goals. If you have questions on how to hit your goals or how to come up with a game plan that will net you 25 percent growth each month, feel free to reach me via phone, email or Twitter.

Happy New Year!

Schopen is owner and founder of Schopen Pest Solutions, McHenry, Ill. You can email him at or reach him via Twitter: @schopenpest; Instagram: @peteschopen; or Facebook: Schopen Pest Solutions, Inc.


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