Matt Falcone (center).
In this installment of our interview series Family First, we sat down with our Quality Assurance Supervisor Matt Falcone. Matt’s experience in various departments and his commitment to pursuing a degree after work prove that putting your best into each hour of the day pays off. Learn more about Matt below.
- What is your role at Pecora?
My role is Quality Assurance Supervisor. I supervise the Color Lab, which does all the custom color orders. When a client wants a substrate like aluminum or brick matched, the color lab handles that and sends the samples for approval.
I also oversee the quality control department. We test raw materials and products during the production process to make sure they’re within spec and meet standards.
- How did you find out about Pecora/come to work with us?
I got a job with Pecora through a temp agency. I had just moved to PA from MD. This was probably my third temp job, but it was a temp to hire – I liked it here and they liked me.
- How long have you been with Pecora?
I’ve been with Pecora for 5 years in June. But it hasn’t felt like 5 years!
- What have you accomplished here that you are most proud of?
Pecora is big on promotion from within, and I’ve been able to take that path. I started in the plant making latex sealants. I moved to staging in latex for a while, then I moved to packaging. From there, I moved to machine operating in the silicone department, then silicone staging.
I moved into Tech Services and spent 2 years there. Just recently in March, I took over this department. I’m pretty proud of how far I’ve come. It’s taken a lot of hard work, but it’s very rewarding.
- Was it hard to adjust moving from position to position so quickly or has it been a fluid transition?
The jump from being out in the plant to Tech Service was the biggest one. It was a steep learning curve. I was familiar with our products, but where they were used from a construction standpoint, what application they were used in – I didn’t know any of that. But you just pick it up by sitting behind more experienced guys and listening to them on the phone. It also helped when I was running the lab in Tech Service. and doing all the job-specific testing.
With the jump to quality control, there was a bit of a curve too. I knew the science part of it, like testing pH and viscosity and performing quality tests. But I had to get used to some of the computer systems we use for tracking inventory. I also had to get used to writing reports and interpreting years’ worth of reports on a specific product.
- What’s your favorite Pecora memory?
The picnics are always fun. We have one every year for the whole company. I’ve made a lot of friends all the way across the board – in the office, in marketing, out in the plant. I know it’s not a memory, but I’d say the people I work with are my favorite thing here.
- What is the most satisfying part of your job?
I’ve found that Quality Control is like being a detective. We look at numbers and trends in our products. For example, from a technical standpoint, if the viscosity or thickness seems to be running high in the summer months, we can make adjustments to prevent that.
You need to always be on the ball. Whether it’s looking at trends from years of making our products, or coming out with new products or colors, or working with R and D to nail down specs and product expectations… those are cool parts of my job.
- Have you built friendships?
Internally and externally while working in Tech Service, absolutely. I did a lot of training seminars out on the road and met a lot of cool people. I also did trade shows and met people in interesting businesses. They’re people I still talk to today. Here, I’ve made a ton of friends in five years.
- What do you love most about the culture here?
We’re definitely like a family here. People who are looking to improve themselves and improve their quality of life have that opportunity here.
That doesn’t always happen – before I was here, I was in a job where there was no room for advancement and no interest in promotion from within. At Pecora, we actually look for people who want to move into different departments and get to know the business. I think that’s what helps create that family feeling.
- What do you like to do in your spare time?
I ride motorcycles. I do a lot of volunteer stuff in the community; right now I work at a halfway house for troubled youths. I act as a role model for them. I help them with things like rides, jobs, interviews, budgeting and their GED. That’s really fulfilling part of my life. I’ve been doing that for five years.
I’m currently in school working towards either a Chemistry or Chemical Engineering Degree, so my spare time right now is a lot of homework and motorcycle ride breaks in between.
- What do you hope to do with your degree?
I hope to use my degree and apply it to all the branches that I’ve worked in. I’d love to get more involved which research and development, formulating and making new products. I just really like the science aspect of each of my jobs.
It’s great because I’ll take a class, and the next day I’ll be talking to one of the chemists and I’ll know exactly what they’re talking about. Five years ago I didn’t know anything about these things.
- What’s a fact about you that not many people know?
I got 9th in the nation in an amateur 9-ball tournament in Las Vegas. Out of the whole country, I placed 9thand I was one ball short of getting third place or higher!
When I was living in Maryland, I had to win a county tournament, then regionals, then the statewide tournament, and I placed top 3 there. Then I went to nationals in Vegas. They flew us out and paid for the hotel for the week. I competed until the very last day when I lost. I could have been on TV!
It’s been years since I played – at that time I was playing 4 hours a day, every year, for about 2 years. I was on a bunch of different leagues. After the tournament ended I just needed a break.
- What’s the best part about being on the Pecora team?
The people. Since I took this position, I’m surrounded by great people who have been in the business for a long time. They’re always supportive and willing to help