The respected chief of the industry-leading pest control firm reveals the basic tenets of his management style – building increased satisfaction levels among employees and clients
According to the PR Director for AchieversTalk, the interviews are conducted in informal settings, encouraging casual conversation, and allowing the interviewee to speak freely about the keys to their successes in business as well as life. Nolen graciously agreed for the interview primarily as a way of telling his story so that the younger generation of entrepreneurs could be inspired – not by his level of perfection and lack of missteps – but by his ability to learn and improve through experience.
AchieversTalk began the interview by asking Scott Nolen how he “arrived at the executive suite of Truly Nolen.” Scott responded, “My father told me early on that I shouldn't plan on running the company. Instead, he advised me to simply 'love what you do,' and the rest will fall into place.” While working in research & development, Scott focused on environmentally friendly low-risk pest control products, and began to work in and around low-income housing – giving away free pest control service, which became a huge success. What was learned during this process lead to a new set of principles that the then-company leaders could not ignore. This was the foundation of Scott's elevation to the position of CEO.
During the Nolen interview, he was also asked for more insight into the principles that he follows in heading up the 1,100-employee family-owned pest control company. "Principles trump rules,” answered Nolen. “For a principle-run organization, you have to have lot less rules. In a rule-run organization, nobody is making good decisions because they are too busy following rules. Principles lead to good decisions. Rules do not.” That philosophy has worked well for Nolen, as his firm's footprint now extends to over 80 offices in the United States and Canada, and over 200 offices in over 60 countries around the world under the separate Truly Nolen International brand.
Answering the question of the three most vital skills he believes an entrepreneur must develop, Nolen offered succinctly, “number one is trusting in one's self. Secondly, be willing to take on a challenge & turn it into an opportunity. And finally, develop determination and perseverance to see things through.”
When asked about specific advice he'd offer to a college student, Nolen said he'd tell them to “Stay open. There is opportunity everywhere.” On the surface, this sounds very general, but when taken to heart, it is one of the most realistic truths about success in life. Another, and arguably the most vital point of the entire interview, was the answer that Scott gave to the question of how he defines success – his answer: “Adding value to the lives that we touch.”
A full transcript of the interview with Scott Nolen will be published on the Achievers Talk website (www.achieverstalk.com) so that entrepreneurs and small business owners can analyze the talk, and glean from the conversation in different ways.