14 February 2014
Client Stories
Comments: 2

Top End Pest Control

When did you start your business and why
We came to Darwin in 2004 July for a quality of life ‘seachange’. Cory and I worked in demanding but relatively low paid positions with the Victorian Government. I wasa police detective working 80 to 100 hours per week, with no overtime! We realised we couldn’t maintain that lifestyle if we wanted children. I’m proud to say we now have four beautiful daughters so we’re glad we made the change!

Because we had a family member in Darwin who owned her own accounting firm, we asked herto look for legitimate businesses to purchase. After more than a year of searching, we bought this business from a retiree. At the time the business had only one contract! It was a risk but came with a sound reputation. We were grateful the former owner stayedon for three years!

What will be different in a business owner’s world after doing business with you
If your company has a need for quality assurance in relation to service providers, Top End Pest Control is the company to do business with. We provide a pest management treatment to meet all your business and regulatory requirements – guaranteed! Our clients include Federal and State/Territory governments, food handling businesses, aeronautical companies and large scale construction projects, all of which have the highest level of regulatory standards.

We also provide homeowners with quality pest control treatments. We aim to meet their particular and often sensitive needs as we work to Australian Standards, best industry practice and our own internal,provenstandards operating procedures.

How do you attract new clients?
We use a multi-pronged approach with the two main arms of our business.
For the Commercial arm we attract new clients because of our proven success through previous delivery on large scale jobs needing quality assurance processes.

Winning the Telstra Small Business Award last Julyassisted us in this area too. I believe winning that competitive Award confirmed our services were supported by strong back office systemswhich meet quality assurance standards.

For the Residential arm, we use radio, TV and print advertising; however, word of mouth remains the most successful method for attracting new residential clients.

What advice would you give other business owners
Cory and I believe strongly in working to support a balanced, quality life.This starts by valuing your staff, even though you may get burnt a few times, eventually you attract staff who share your values. At that point, the journey becomes much easier. We use word of mouth recruitment as it seems to work well for us.

Once you get the right staff on board, they emotionally buy into the business and its outcomes, they voluntarily take ownership.

My business model is to mentor staff who express an interest in becoming business leaders to the point they can eventually take over running one arm of the business. From the time they make that decision, they have a vested interest in growing the business. This means I can spend less time physically in the business to devote more time to working on the business. By the same token, I’m always ready to ‘go back onto the tools’ to meet an urgent need and it keeps me in touch with the business from the ground up. I know staff and clients, appreciate that in me.

I like being in a position where I can systematicallyand confidently apply for large tenders and contracts and finding new areas to move into, even interstate and international markets. Top End Pest Control has recently moved into the WA market, we have projects in Timor Leste and developed our first international office in Guam, USA.

Why use Staff Management?
An important aspect is to work on your back office systems. That’s why I used Heather from Staff Management, as she has experience and qualifications in HR-IR-QA and has systematically redrafted all our people management policies and procedures, added new ones, developed all job descriptions in line with WHS needs and the relevant Awards, created a range of offer letters for new employees or JV partnerships, and cajoled me into creating a comprehensive Induction process and presentation. That’s been really useful when we’ve had to present in various forums on our business, sometimes at short notice! I’m always happy to recommend Staff Management as your outsourced HR team!

If you weren’t doing this business, what would be doing instead?
My passion has always been criminal investigation work and law enforcement! I also havewell developed deal making facilitation skills because of mynatural love for networking combined with high level integrity – deal makers trust me and I feel good knowing I’ve assisted others on their road to success. Everyone wins!

Do you have a favouritequote or mantra?
Business luck is when hard work, dedication and preparation meets opportunity.

Cory and I also love Walt Disney’s vision: It’skindafun to do the impossible!

We married in Cinderella’s Chapel , Disneyland and went back for our 10th anniversary to spend a whole month there with our daughters. As far as having a successful business and a successful marriage, Cory and I share the same mantra: Love does not consist in gazing at each other but in looking outward together in the same direction, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Airman’s Odyssey.It’s worked brilliantly so far!Tim smiles.

Of course, if you ask Tim’s staff, they’ll tell you his daily saying is, Happy Days :)!

If you want more information about Tim’s business or to find out how to go about applying for a business award, ring Tim’s office on 08 8981 2288.

2 responses on “Top End Pest Control

  1. heather says:

    Hello Lary
    thank you for your kind words, let me know if we can assist you – anywhere is Australia is good!

    cheers and we hope you and your family had a great Easter break – as we know it’s sometimes the only time small business owners get a few days off together with their friends and families.

  2. heather says:

    Hi there, yes it’s amazing what uniforms do in the subconscious mind of our customers – they like to know we’re all from the one team and staff look more official than when in plain clothing, even if it’s PPE.
    Thank you for reading and for your comment, much appreciated

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