Professional Pest Controller Magazine Issue 95

28 May 2019

Measuring success one person at a time

Chief Exec Viewpoint | PPC95 May 2019

I am writing this just a few days after the most successful PestEx ever.

There are many ways of measuring success. One such measure could have been footfall – although I have seen many exhibitions with lots of people milling around but not much engagement with exhibitors. That was not the case at PestEx with orderly queues forming at some stands, especially on day one.

As it was, the numbers through the door increased by 29% compared to two years ago.

Another measure of success can be the seminars. There was an excellent mix of technical and business-focused seminars with many new faces on the speaking circuit. It was standing room only for some of these which was great to see.

For me the outstanding measure of success was the feeling of the event. There was a real buzz in the room from when the doors opened until they closed again. ExCeL was buzzing so much it almost interfered with Mike Dilger presenting the British Pest Management Awards at the end of the first day.

How do we really measure success? Enquiries received, jobs done, tasks completed, stock and equipment used? All of these things are essential measures, but you could deliver on all of these things and still not feel right about any of them.

How we feel at work, at home and at play is vitally important. You could have what appears on paper to be a very successful job, business, life, etc but unless it feels good, what is the point?

Many people working in our sector are lone workers, and the health and wellbeing of our people are important, particularly our mental
health and wellbeing.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) recently published the following statistics:

  • The total number of cases of work-related stress, depression or anxiety in 2017/18 was 595,000, a prevalence rate of 1,800 per 100,000 workers
  • The total number of working days lost due to this condition in 2017/18 was 15.4 million days
  • In 2017/18 stress, depression or anxiety accounted for 44% of all work-related ill health cases and 57% of all working days lost due to ill health
  • The main work factors cited by respondents as causing work-related stress, depression or anxiety were workload pressures, including tight deadlines and too much responsibility and a lack of managerial support.

PestEx, the BPMAs and the Afterparty at the Giant Robot were all a well-deserved celebration for the pest management sector, and it is right that we pause and recognise that achievement.

Many businesses don’t celebrate their successes enough. BPCA is rightly proud of what we delivered over those two days in March. This was a team effort by the BPCA Staff team, the members who helped us out, as well as the exhibitors and speakers and everyone that supported us practically.

It was the first year we ran an event of this scale without a professional conference organiser supporting us which added to the pressure.

I would like to think we recognised the stress that delivering these events put on everyone involved and that we made sure everyone was supported, checked-in on, given sufficient breaks and rest periods and generally had their wellbeing cared for.

It is often easier to think about this stuff when something big is happening, but we need to remember that the wellbeing of ourselves and our staff is a 24/7 thing. If it is an afterthought, it is probably already too late.

BPCA Chief Executive

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