After returning from last month’s NPMA PestWorld convention in Orlando, Fla., I tallied up all the steps I had logged on my Fitbit during four full days, and I came up with a figure in excess of 57,000. This activity gave me a chance to pause and reflect on everything the PCT staff had seen and done throughout the week at the pest control industry’s largest tradeshow and convention. Here are some observations and memories:

Volunteer Projects. Props to NPMA’s Leadership Development Group (LDG) and PestVets Committee for using PestWorld as an opportunity to give back. LDG members spent a day volunteering at an Orlando nursery school, reading to kids and working on various service projects throughout the building. Members of NPMA’s PestVets Committee visited the Orlando VA Medical Center, where they assisted and played bingo with disabled veterans.

Exhibit Hall Energy. One observation our staff made was that in addition to innovative pest control products, this year’s exhibit hall was filled with A LOT of complementary technology solutions. These vendors bring fresh perspectives and ideas for helping PCOs better reach the customer of the present (and future). Speaking of bringing great energy, Ed and Joe Sheehan, the colorful father-son duo who launched the Colony Confidential podcast, were broadcasting live from this year’s show floor!

Glen Ramsey and 4-month-old son Dean were exhibit hall must-sees!

Changing of the Guard. One by-product of recent M&A activity is that longtime company leaders have decided to “cash out” and enjoy the fruits of their labor. While some of these recent sellers have chosen to stay involved in the industry and attend events like PestWorld, others have not. We missed seeing them this year. At the same time, it’s been great to meet up-and-coming, next-generation PCOs, many of whom shared really cool article ideas with the PCT staff. Speaking of newcomers, how fun was it to see Orkin’s Glen Ramsey and his 4-month-old son, Dean, who was dressed up as the Orkin Man (above). Glen, who also made the outfit, told PCT, “I know he won’t remember this because he is too young, but I look forward to being able to share this with him [when he is older]. I intend on having a framed copy of him in this outfit sitting somewhere in his room for a long time.”

Will They Eat It? At the PPMA board meeting, Executive Director Cindy Mannes discussed several 2019 PPMA initiatives, including the development of a stationary and secure environment(s) for termite colonies to feed on various items (e.g., sneaker, paper-wrapped cheeseburger, broom, towel, etc.) to show consumers just how voracious and sometimes undiscerning termites are when it comes to what they will eat. PPMA is proposing a fun, game-show inspired “Will They Eat It?!” theme to the videos and campaign logo to make the content and video engaging to the end user. The desired result is for PPMA to produce an engaging digital campaign complete with polling, entertaining videos and additional graphics they can develop from the project.


In this month’s cover story, “All Eyes on the Hill,” PCT took a look at eight regulatory issues that have the potential to impact PCOs’ businesses. The story discussed why it is important for PCOs to educate politicians about how our industry protects public health; a great place where PCOs can do so is NPMA Legislative Day, which takes place Feb. 24-26, in Washington, D.C. Learn more.

The author is Internet editor/managing editor of PCT. Contact him at bharbison@gie.net.