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Target CEO Brian Cornell honored for operational excellence

Brian Cornell has served as CEO of Target since 2014.
Brian Cornell has served as CEO of Target since 2014.

Brian Cornell, chair and CEO of Target, is one of two recipients of Columbia Business School’s 2023 Deming Cup for Operational Excellence. Awarded annually since 2010, the Deming Cup recognizes leaders for operational excellence and for fostering a culture of continuous improvement within their organizations.  

Cornell will receive the award at a ceremony at Columbia University's Low Library Rotunda on October 24.  Michele Buck, chair, president and CEO of The Hershey Company, is the other 2023 Deming Cup recipient. 

As CEO of Target since 2014, Cornell has established a strategic direction that built on the company's strengths as a multi-category mass merchandiser with an excellent reputation for its shopping experience, design expertise, brand curation and brand development. 

"In today's dynamic environment, especially in the fast-evolving world of retail, continuous improvement and operational excellence are essential ingredients for successful, sustainable growth," stated Cornell. "Every day, that's what drives Target's more than 400,000 passionate, caring and innovative team members, as they serve millions of families across America. I'm honored to accept the Deming Cup on their behalf."

Cornell and Target's leadership team have made major investments in digital, data and supply chain capabilities, placing the company's fleet of stores at the center both of physical shopping and digital fulfillment. This "stores-as-hubs" strategy, along with the 2017 acquisition of Shipt, catapulted Target into a leadership position in same-day, store-based fulfillment services, according to a release announcing the award.

“Cornell helped drive Target's strongest-ever growth and built a culture of continuous improvement – from sourcing to the speed and accuracy with which guests receive orders – that will guide growth and competitive differentiation for years to come,” the release continued. “He also spearheaded vast investments in wages, benefits, team training and development, diverse and equitable representation, and a corporate culture that helps all team members care, grow and win together.

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