When Scott Anderson became president and chief operating officer of Farmington, Conn.-based compounder Polymer Resources in 2018, his first goal was to establish a corporate culture that was positive and focused on customer service, creating a company that employees were proud to be part of. Anderson said this was accomplished by "creating a clear strategy that everyone could rally behind."
"At Polymer Resources, everyone takes ownership for our safety, the quality of our products and our services, and our on-time delivery," Anderson said in his CEO Issue survey. "It's a very positive culture, revolving completely around our customers.
"Everyone in the company feels directly responsible for our collective success. We support each other, have a great work ethic, have excellent relationships among the team and with our customers, and consistently achieve results. Our employees feel proud to be a part of the Polymer Resources family, as do I," he added.
He graduated from Kettering University of Flint, Mich., with a degree in mechanical engineering and from Michigan State University with an MBA.
Anderson started in plastics as a process technician in a sheet molding compound plant at Ionia, Mich.-based GenCorp Inc.
"What I enjoyed most about my job there was interacting with people, which sparked my interest in sales. So, I set my sights on a job in sales and mapped out a path that would lead to this type of job in the future," he said. "Within three years I was a global sales account manager for GE Plastics. It was a great opportunity."
Anderson said he tries to learn from his employees, management, customers and nearly everyone he meets "because everyone has something to offer."
"I was fortunate to work for an excellent sales leader at GE Plastics early in my career who taught me about the value of correctly servicing customers," he said. "I am extremely grateful for the time he spent to help me transition from an engineering program management role to sales."
The best career advice Anderson received came during his time at GE.
"I was told the following by an excellent GE executive: 'When you start off in your career, you are working for yourself. You are trying to support your family, get promoted and meet your own expectations. But at some point, your job becomes much more important to others than to yourself. The decisions an executive makes [affects] the lives of several people, much more than your own.' Understanding this responsibility has helped me to be a better leader," he said.
Another piece of advice is that "the people who report to you don't work for you — you work for them."
"I believe in this 100 percent," Anderson added.
He attends key industry events such as NPE to scope out the new technological advancements, which greatly interest him.
"The future of the plastics industry is being built today, and these shows and events allow me to see firsthand important programs that are under development and to connect with industry experts to understand specifics as well as a big picture of what that industry will look like," he said.
Amy Godfrey, managing director of AH&M Marketing Communications in Pittsfield, Mass., said Anderson "stands out as a natural leader in every respect."
"His story is one based on hard work, determination, focus and high moral values," Godfrey said in an email statement. "Additionally, his extensive experience in the plastics industry; his ability to listen, absorb and quickly learn from those around him; his passion for his work; and the way he truly cares about others have made him the strong, effective manager that he is today."
Polymer Resources manufactures customized specialty engineering resin compounds and provides color-matching services and related materials technology solutions for the electrical, medical, consumer goods, business equipment and automotive industries.
Anderson said every employee is important and plays a significant role in the company's success. To someone joining Polymer Resources, Anderson would give the following advice: "If you have an idea or see something that doesn't seem right, say something."
"I would hope that customers, suppliers and, most importantly, our employees would say that during my tenure I was a leader who had a clear vision, that I truly cared about them and that their lives were made a little bit better by being a part of this great organization," Anderson said.