Innovation Inc: The CEOs of Chewy and Honeywell talk digital transformation

Chewy CEO Sumit Singh

Summary List Placement

Chewy and Honeywell. 

At first glance, the two companies couldn’t be more different. One specializes in online pet products, while the other is an industrial giant in the midst of pivoting to software. But after getting the chance to talk to the CEOs of both organizations recently, I believe that they may have more in common than one would initially assume.

Underscoring each company’s strategy is a relentless pursuit of new markets while finding ways to better serve existing customers. While that’s not an entirely novel concept for multi-billion-dollar corporations, what Honeywell’s Darius Adamczyk and Chewy’s Sumit Singh also have in common is an appetite to double-down on technology to achieve that goal. 

For Honeywell, that looks like new office automation tools and a gamble on quantum computing, while for Chewy, it’s the company’s first fully-automated factory. 

These aren’t, of course, the only initiatives underway at either firm But they’re notable, largely because the efforts encapsulate so well the broader push to make digital technologies a focus — particularly as the coronavirus pandemic continues to force companies to innovate faster than ever before. 

And for both Honeywell and Chewy, it’s as much of a cultural focus as it is on the tech itself. 

Singh, for example, is making Chewy a places that embraces risk-taking and failure so that “every person inside the organization is an evangelist for inventiveness.” 

And at Honeywell, Adamczyk has left his mark on the organization by elevating Forge — the firm’s software division — from a background player that worked across different verticals to its own business unit. It’s one of the most visible aspects of its transition to a software company and a signal to employees that it’s an important part of Honeywell’s future. 

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Singh and Adamczyk aren’t the only execs we’ve talked to about digital transformation lately, either: Below are a few other stories that you may have missed from the last two weeks. And as always: If you’re interested in receiving this biweekly newsletter and other updates from our ongoing Innovation Inc. series, please be sure to sign up here.

Bank of America has been nabbing thousands of patents — far outpacing rivals. 2 execs lay out why the firm has embraced that strategy as the best way to drive tech innovation.
Capital One explains how it’s spent almost a decade modernizing its IT with Amazon’s cloud and the agile developer methodology to move faster and stay competitive
How an internal competition helped PepsiCo launch a new drink to help people relax that aims to disrupt the $1 billion over-the-counter sleep remedy market

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Source:: Business Insider


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