Defeat Groundhog Day: 5 reasons to create business systems


February 2, 2020

Photo courtesy of, and copyrighted by, Gene White,

Photo courtesy of, and copyrighted by, Gene White,

The year 1993 produced one of the best Bill Murray movies of all time; Groundhog Day. In the story, Murray’s character, was forced to re-live the same day until he learned it’s not about what happens to you in life, but how you respond to it.

Business owners who have not systemized often feel like Murray’s character. Everyday re-living the same struggles, limits and frustrations. They, too, must learn that it is not about what happens to them, but how they respond.

Savvy ‘pest-preneurs’ have implemented the ‘not-so-secret, secret weapon’ of business systemization. Pest management professionals who are tired of being spread thin, overworked and under-compensated, should begin the process of systemizing. Not convinced? Here are five benefits of business systemization for pest management companies:

1. Create consistency

It doesn’t matter whether a customer orders a Big Mac in Ocala, Fla. or Oakland, Calif., it’s the same. McDonald’s has mastered the art of systemizing the products and services they offer. Consistency is key when building trust with clients and creating onboarding training for new staff.

2. Clone best practices

Pest management professionals from one side of the globe to the other share a common frustration: how to clone top performers. Luckily, it is much easier than building a DNA splicing gizmo. Write down the steps top employees take when producing their extraordinary results. Annotate what is done, and in what order it is done, to build training material to replicate the results.

3. Increase profitability

Cost control can be tricky for pest control businesses. How can you be sure of product needs for a specific route or if a waste of company resources is occurring? Systemization helps to reduce costs, and therefore increases profitability by enabling predictable inventory usage. It also helps management to rapidly determine where waste is occurring.

4. Provide freedom for owner

Operating a pest control business can be chaotic for the owner to manage. Owners can find themselves bogged down in day-to-day trivialities. Business systemization provides an effective training tool for the  staff. The less time the owner spends answering the same questions, the more time that can be dedicated to growing the business.

5. Necessary to scale

Scaling begins with systemizing. A business can not be scaled unless there is consistency, cloning of best practices, solid profitability and the freedom for the owner to concentrate on the next big step.

Every top performing pest management company in the United States found success, in part by, systemizing their marketing, operation, and financial strategies. Just as Murray’s character had to realize that it was not what happened to him in life that mattered, but how he responded to it; pest control business owners must realize that it is not about what happens to them, but how they respond.

When struggles, limits and frustration confront you, do not get angry. Get determined to create a system to mitigate or eliminate that stress from affecting your business again with systemization.

Eric Palmer is the owner of Southwest Exterminators, the founder of 7 in 6 Consulting and the author of Scale2Succeed. If you have any questions you can reach him at

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