Mariah Vera: Women bring the ‘go-get-‘er-done’

May 21, 2024

Mariah Vera

Mariah Vera: Women bring the ‘go-get-‘er-done’

May 21, 2024

Do you consent to us contacting you via SMS?

Repost from Eddie Wooten

Mariah Vera

She’s in her first few weeks working with a new company, but Mariah Vera has found her place in the pest control industry.

Vera is the director of customer experience for ACTION Termite & Pest Control in Phoenix. She moved over after spending seven years with Proof Pest Control.

But Vera is serving more than just ACTION’s customers in Arizona. She’s the committee chair for the Arizona Professional Women in Pest Management.

“It’s important that everyone comes together and supports women and grows this industry – and with more women in it,” Vera says.

Vera is a 2023 recipient of an Impact Award for Women in Pest Management, a program sponsored by FieldRoutes and organized by the National Pest Management Association.

And Vera is featured in today’s entry in the Showcasing Women In Pest Control series from FieldRoutes.

My position

Director of customer experience

ACTION Termite & Pest Control, Phoenix, Arizona

“I handle anything in the customer journey, from the moment they start with us, their first phone call. We’re redoing customer communications: What that looks like, every touch point within their journey, how are they finding ACTION, what’s happening as soon as they give us that call. And then constantly doing customer service training and training the reps to keep those customers forever. We want everyone to stay on the ACTION conveyor belt.”

Years in pest control industry


A career I once envisioned

“I like to help people, but I envisioned myself as going into social work. Once I got into it, it got really heavy, so then I switched over to business management. After that, I found a way into retail. That was my first big-girl job.”

How I got into pest control

“I was at Proof Pest Control for seven years. Before then, I was working in retail management.

“I was managing Ulta, the store. I eventually saw myself managing more than one Ulta, but then I got tired of working every single holiday, late nights, weekends, all the time.

“My mom was actually the accountant at Proof when Proof only had one state. She said, ‘They’re hiring for a customer service rep. There’s only one other girl here. You’d be the second one.’ I’m like, ‘OK, no evenings, no weekends really, no holidays.’ So I joined, and then I was there for seven years.

“When I left, I had 18 reps under me. Being the second rep and then going to 18 reps under me, it was a long journey. But it was fun.”

What the pest control industry is all about for me

“Helping people. Giving them one less thing they have to worry about.”

The biggest misconceptions about women in pest control

“People not in the industry assume it’s a male technician that will always show up at their door. That’s a huge misconception, that women can’t do it or don’t want to do it. Being in the industry, I found out that’s completely opposite. One, they’re more than capable, and two, there are women that want to do it.

“It’s just attention to detail, the go-get-‘er-done. A lot of them, too, are moms. They’re working whether they’re sick or not and taking care of kids. To them, just getting the job done is an easy task. They’re already multitasking everything else in their lives with their children, and so I think it’s easy for them. It comes easy. It’s natural. They just know how to multitask.”

A mentor

“Dawn Aguayo; she’s with Orkin (divisional sales director). She’s been a huge mentor to me. I met her through Arizona’s Professional Women in Pest Management at the time she was running it. She recruited me to be involved in all of those things they do. She showed me the power of collaboration and getting with other women and how to build strong relationships with other people in the industry.

“In the pest control industry, especially, networking is huge. Everybody knows everybody. Building those strong relationships—she’s definitely helped me with my networking and collaborating with other women.”

The benefits of organizations for or led by women

“I am committee chair (for 1½ years) for the Arizona Professional Women in Pest Management, the interest group for the Arizona Pest Professional Organization, and I love it. We get together with women once a month. Quarterly, we get together in person, and it’s a great time networking, seeing what everyone’s doing. We started doing posts, like spotlighting a woman in the industry in Arizona so that everyone could be like, ‘Hey, I relate to Karla (Davis) from Patriotic Pest.’ It’s just a good way to get to know people and know that there’s other people like you out there.

“In my PWIPM, we have a lot of men, too, that stand with women. They join it because they want to support women advancing in the pest industry.”

My biggest challenge

“It’s definitely breaking those stereotypes. ‘How can you multitask your career and be a mom? Is she ready for the opportunity if she just had a kid?’ It’s hard to overcome the stereotype that we can’t do it all.”

My biggest opportunity

“I want to grow the Professional Women in Pest Management to be bigger. We’re getting a lot of headway there, and it’s awesome to see more women join the pest control industry, whether it’s in the field or in office jobs. The biggest opportunity is for me to get people to leave other industries to come to the pest control industry.”

A woman’s superpower in pest control

“To excel in the pest control industry, you just need problem-solving, attention to detail, knowledge of pests and their behaviors. And there’s no reason why a woman wouldn’t be able to know that. It’s about qualifications and dedication, not about gender. There’s nothing gender-specific to it.”

You also should know

“I actually went into labor, at Proof, on the phone (laughs). There were only four customer service reps, and weirdly that day, everybody had gotten sick. So I had to stay and work a double shift that day. The office closed at 5 o’clock, and it was 1 o’clock and ‘I still have four hours to go. I can’t just leave.’ So I started going into labor, and then that night Roman was born.”

My advice to a woman starting out

“Just work on your skills and your knowledge and confidence. Once you get in there, start seeking mentorship from other women in the industry. There are a lot of good resources out there. NPMA puts on the Women’s Forum; I went last year, and I’ve met so many people from there. Find a mentor and a role model that you can relate to.”

Share This Blog!

Local Family owned and operated

What our customers are saying...

TOP Rated Pest Control Services

What sets us apart...

We are a family owned & operated pest control company located in Phoenix, AZ. Serving Arizona since 1969, we have built a reputation for delivering the highest level of client service in the industry and have an all-star team of pest industry professionals that provide thousands of treatments each year. Our team of experts provide both residential and commercial services across the entire Valley. From recurring pest services that treat over 50 types of insects to industry leading termite treatment solutions, you can count on us to provide a solution that is safe, effective, and tailored to your specific pest control needs.