Robert Prybutok has a long career history within the manufacturing industry—particularly areas that focus on acoustics and noise control. After earning his BSME (that is: Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering) from Philadelphia's renowned Drexel University, Prybutok's career skyrocketed.
After graduating from college, Prybutok held executive positions within leading composite manufacturing companies. His last position within an organization, other than one which he founded, was Vice President where he oversaw the majority of operations—Sales & Marketing, Research & Development and Quality Control.
Seeking a change of pace, Prybutok's entrepreneurial spirit took hold, taking him in a slightly different direction. Out of his home in Delaware, Prybutok founded Polymer Technologies, Inc. Since the early days of business, Prybutok has turned Polymer Technologies into one of the most successful composite manufactures in the world.
A Short Q&A with Mr. Prybutok:
Q: What led you to seek a degree in Mechanical Engineering? Why did you decide to build your career in industrial composites?
A: My choice to seek an engineering degree was driven by my interest in mathematics and technology. I always had a fascination with mechanized processes and had a vision to one day be involved in manufacturing and eventually own a manufacturing company. The specific choice of mechanical engineering was influenced by my cousin who attended Drexel University and was the first PhD candidate to graduate from their school of mechanical engineering. He explained the breadth of technology the ME curriculum covered and I felt it provided the broadest technical education.
After graduating and spending 2 ½ years with Ingersoll Rand as a sales engineer, I joined Specialty Composites. At the time, Specialty had decent but not fantastic revenue. In the 16 years I spent with Specialty, I played a significant role in developing them into one of the largest companies in the industrial OEM market for noise control materials. My only problem was I realized I was too entrepreneurial for such a large company. The challenge presented by a small fledgling business appealed to me and fed my entrepreneurial spirit. My disposition at the time led me to literally build Polymer Technologies from the ground up.
Q: At what point did you realize you had built a successful business?
A: Candidly, after about 2 years when we moved vending machines into the plant! That was truly a sign of success. Really though, it is hard for me to answer this question. I'm always looking ahead and strategically assessing the desired future state of Polymer Technologies. Since we are always out-doing ourselves, looking back on past accomplishments is less satisfying than seeing our present work improve upon past methods and planning what we will achieve in the future. Although I am an optimist, there is always more to achieve which tends to overcome my sense of success. However, I make sure our people always celebrate the little and the large successes we achieve.
Stay tuned for more Q&A's with Mr. Prybutok. Right now, you can learn more about Mr. Prybutok and Polymer Technologies by watching a video interview here.