Louis R. Chênevert is a Canadian businessman most well known for his time as Chairman and CEO of United Technologies Corporation. He was born in Montreal, Quebec in 1958 and in 1979 earned his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in production management from HEC Montreal. In 2011, HEC awarded his a doctorate honoris causa. In 2014 Concordia University honored him with the same distinction. Prior to his time at United Technologies, Louis worked for General Motors and Pratt & Whitney Canada.
In a recent interview, Louis spoke about his career at United Technologies and his philosophy on life. He also offered some insider advice on how young entrepreneurs can become successful in the business world. Regarding his career at United Technologies, he emphasized that the focus was always on understanding and meeting customer needs. This emphasis, combined with a passion for innovation and creation of game-changing products is what has made the company so successful.
Louis takes a lot of pride in the significant accomplishments that were made during his tenure there. These accomplishments include revolutionary engine development with the F135 that redefined the military propulsion segment and winning the rights to the next generation of Gulfstream G500 and G600 which displaced the monopoly that Rolls Royce held for decades in the large business segment. Louis also speaks about the fact that United Technologies took part in the largest acquisition ever at the time with the takeover of Goodrich Aerospace. He then went on to talk about the things that excited him while he was with UT. He emphasizes that it was really all about operational talent and engineering in order to deliver the kind of results that consistently exceeded customer expectations.
This attitude, along with embracing the fact that technology is advancing at a rapid rate allowed United Technologies to accelerate its own momentum by embracing this constant change, rather than fighting against it. When speaking about his philosophy on entrepreneurship and what advice he would give to the next generation, Louis offered several points. Focus and relentless follow up combined with passion and optimism. Above all, he notes that if you want to be successful as an entrepreneur, you need to have the right team behind you. Build a team that can overcome the hurdles that the business world will throw at companies and be an inspiring leader who lets his people know that they are appreciated. Finally, he reminds the reader that business is all about delighting your customers.