5 questions with India Unseld

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February 25, 2022

India Unseld

India Unseld

Did your pest management firm have “launch an outreach program” on its New Year’s resolution list for 2022, but not yet scratch it off? If you just don’t know where to begin, read on for how one company implemented and maintains several initiatives that benefit the many communities it serves. Guarantee Pest Control in Bowling Green, Ky., and its Blankenship and Sons Pest Control branch office in Adolphus, Ky., keeps its team busy offering quality service and community outreach. We caught up with India Unseld, secretary and marketing manager of Guarantee Pest Control, who also serves as its chief outreach coordinator.

1. India, you focus on outreach programs for Guarantee Pest Control, while your counterpart, Ashley Pardue, does the same at Blankenship and Sons. How did this start?

About eight years ago, company President Jimmy Blankenship recruited me to expand the program. We’ve done everything from donating more than 12,000 boxes of cereal to local schools for a breakfast program to helping to collect Christmas presents for kids who were affected by the tornado that came through Bowling Green on Dec. 17. Ashley and I collaborate on some projects, whereas on others we work independently. She recently spearheaded a fundraiser to buy equipment for local police and ambulance services, for example.

2. You’re probably inundated with requests from all over the community. How do you and the team decide which projects to take on?

Of course we want to help everyone and be involved in everything that we can. However, we usually look for events and opportunities that benefit children.

3. How does the team balance the work that goes into volunteering and staffing these projects, with delivering quality pest control service to customers?

We like to say we always get our work done before we play! But personally, I’ve worked after-hours or on weekends several times so the “business” work is done before a big event. If we approach these projects as a team, though, they don’t take much time away from work.

4. Even with pandemic-related constraints, you and the team do so much. Have you experienced any challenges in seeing projects through to fruition?

Surprisingly, no. We were able to continue to do what we planned, for the most part. The only event we missed was Trunk or Treat in October 2020. Otherwise, we continue to follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and just keep going. Our community still showed up during our cereal drive in December, for example, and we surpass our goals every year.

5. What advice do you have for other pest control firms that want to help their local communities? Should they put an employee officially in charge of community outreach like Guarantee has, for example?

That certainly helps! But we want everyone to know you don’t have to be wealthy to make a difference in your community. Small donations add up to big accomplishments. Even if you can’t give financially, just show up and be present. I promise, you can always find a way to serve.

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About the Author

Heather Gooch

Heather Gooch is the editor-in-chief for PMP magazine. She can be reached at hgooch@northcoastmedia.net or 330-321-9754.

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