Paul Bratz (2)Q: Tell me about your job
A: As Operations Manager my job is very exciting – there is no typical day. There is an element of day-to-day firefighting, but also a concentration on process improvement and planning for the future. Apogee’s guidance on Continuous Improvement and Lean has helped to focus our efforts. Our strong growth over the last few years has been exciting (and challenging) as well.
Q: What did you do prior to Linetec?
A: Prior to Linetec I worked at American Wood Fibers in Schofield, Wisconsin. American Wood Fibers manufactures pet bedding from compressed bales of wood shavings, and wood flour that’s used primarily as a filler in plastics and adhesives. It’s an interesting process where wood waste from several of the door and window manufacturers in the area (many of which are Linetec customers) is processed into these useful items rather than landfilled or used as boiler fuel.
Q: What is your favorite part of your job?
A: The best part of my job is working with a wide variety of people in different capacities throughout the organization. I also enjoy working for a company with a track record of success and growth. Our culture and core values are one of the differentiators – they help make the tough days worth it.
Q: What poses the biggest challenges for you?
A: At the current time, labor availability is the largest challenge. We’re enjoying a strong economy today. Many businesses in our local community are hiring. To recruit and hire high-caliber people, we have to set a high standard and promote our strengths – culture, safety, stability and environmental responsibility.
Q: Are there any finishing type or color trends that you seeing more of lately?
A: White colors seem to be trending up at the current time. A few years ago, the trend was aluminum-flaked metallic colors with clear coats, but this has migrated more recently to mica-flaked “metallic” coatings without the need of clear top coats. Mica coatings are less sensitive than metallic’s to the flake orientation dynamics, helping to minimize the risk of metallic variation.
PaulBratz-flambeauQ: What is something you are looking forward to?
A: I’m looking forward to summer activities. Golfing, biking, fishing and grilling out with friends are some of my favorites.
Q: What is something people don’t know about you?
A: Outside of work, I enjoy bicycling. I’m not a particularly gifted or fast rider, but I enjoy endurance riding. We have a local 24-hour mountain bike race that I usually participate in and I also do several rides of 100 miles or more each summer. I find cycling to be a great way to relax and enjoy time with friends, particularly when it involves a cold beer after long ride.
PaulBratz-mitch paul (2)            PaulBratz-ContDivide