As Mike Romney and Bryant White run their growing Fox Pest Control business, they use tools, such as an annual “culture book” that they publish, to promote their company culture and inspire team members.
Fox Pest Control, headquartered in Logan, Utah, says it prioritizes the creation of positive relationships. The company’s mission — “To develop confident leaders and empower individuals to provide strong outstanding service” — is reaffirmed by the contents of its culture books.
In the books, Fox Pest Control emphasizes the role its company relationships and core values have in promoting the growth of leaders and ultimately fostering a culture of success. It also provides insights into the company’s history and team members across all branches.
When they founded Fox Pest Control in 2012, Mike Romney and Bryant White never anticipated the success their company would achieve.
After initially partnering to create the marketing company Romney Services in 2009 — and experiencing an unexpected bump in the road when a project they were to work on was canceled — Romney and White recognized the risk of working with another company, according to the history section of the 2019 culture book. It was this “wake-up call” that led the brothers-in-law to create their own business.
So, in 2012 Romney and White reached out to childhood friend and entrepreneur Sterling Fife, who opened the first branch of Fox Pest Control in Oxford, Conn.
Within the first year, Fox Pest Control had established five branches in three states, and from 2014 to 2019, opened 12 additional branches. The company now has 29 branches in 14 states and, in 2020, was ranked #20 on the PCT Top 100.
PCT also recognized Fox Pest Control as a “Rising Star” company in the September 2019 issue, in part for the company’s commitment to quality service.
The Utah-based Fox Pest Control credits its success to a carefully built company culture rooted in leadership and valuable relationships. Such ideas are displayed in the company’s culture book.
PCT sat down with founding partner Mike Romney to find out more about the inspiration behind the Fox Pest Control culture book and the work that went into creating it.
Q: Where did the idea of a ‘culture book’ for Fox Pest Control originate?
A: It was a collective effort from our Fox leadership. We feel it is important to record our yearly growth as a company. We also want to make sure every one of our team members feels known, valued and inspired.
Q: What did you hope to accomplish by publishing the book?
A. We wanted to convey a clear understanding of our 18 core values and how practicing them daily is an essential part of improving both our personal and professional lives.
Q: How did you decide what to include in the book?A:
The way the book is created has changed yearly, but it always includes every person in the company and shows their contribution to the Fox family.
Q: From beginning to end, how long did it take to produce the book?
A: It takes us almost an entire year to complete the culture book from start to finish. Our partners spend an incredible amount of effort thinking through the overall theme and direction they want us to take. It is certainly worth the process.
Q: Was it a more ambitious project than you originally expected? Why or why not?
A: Not as much now as it was before. In the beginning, we knew it would take a tremendous amount of time. We are now much more practiced. Each culture book has become easier and easier to produce in greater quality and a more profound impact.
Q: How many copies did you print and what was the approximate cost of this project?
A. This year we printed 600 copies. The value of the book far exceeds any financial impact of the project.
Q: Did you also publish a digital edition of the book?
A: Our book is available electronically for our team. The culture book also contains content that is found throughout our social media platforms.
Q: How did your team decide who would receive a copy of the Fox culture book?
A: We gave them out at our annual holiday party (pre COVID-19) as well as our leadership conferences. We also sent them to select family, friends and colleagues within the pest control industry.
Q: How did you announce publication of the book to your company?
A: There was never a formal announcement made; however, our team members have come to anticipate its release each fall.
Q: How did your employees respond to publication of the book?
A: They love and appreciate the book and what it represents to them. They’re always excited to find themselves, their leaders and their team in the book.
Q: What have been some of the more surprising benefits of producing a culture book?
A: It has been a great recruiting tool and, as the company has grown, it has helped educate new technicians on the Fox culture and what is most important to us. It paints an accurate picture of what it’s really like to work for Fox Pest Control every day. Another benefit has been the positive feedback we have received from others in the industry.
Q: Why is creating a dynamic corporate culture so important to you?
A: We feel that carefully building and nurturing leaders is the key to our company’s long-term success. A positive culture can bring clear thinking, a long-term view, innovation and empathy for each other; all of which will push us as individuals and professionals forward in positive growth. Developing leaders is the key to success.
Q: What other things do you do as a company to reinforce/elevate your company’s corporate culture?
A: We hold various leadership events throughout the year that help us strengthen relationships, facilitate personal growth and sharpen our team’s leadership skills. We seek to help everyone constantly grow in professional knowledge, work ethic and everyday integrity through regular training and even incentives to read leadership-based books. As we strive to put relationships first within the Fox culture, we have seen tremendous growth in the lives of those we are privileged to work alongside each day.
Q: Is there anything you’d like to add or that we haven’t asked about the topic of corporate culture and Fox Pest Control?
A: At Fox Pest Control our core values lead us to become the very best version of ourselves. Our company relationships give us the opportunity to grow and always put the person in front of the problem. When we lift where we stand, everything becomes easier because we are working and growing together. Being a part of the Fox family empowers everyone with leadership skills for life.