Since graduating from college, David Duncan has built his career within Mohawk Industries, counting more than 28 years at the Calhoun, Georgia-headquartered flooring company. He moved over to Mohawk’s hospitality division, Durkan, in 2016, where he now serves as senior vice president of sales.
How has Mohawk evolved to where it is today?
Mohawk Industries went public in 1992, and we grew through acquisitions. One of my roles on the marketing side was assimilating all those different companies because each one had its own set of brands. We focused on getting it down to the ones that had the most brand equity: Mohawk, Daltile, Durkan, Karastan, and Pergo. We organized ourselves to where we could go out as one large company and service the needs of clients. We’re a very mature company. We do more than $10 billion in sales worldwide per year. We’re the largest flooring producer in the world. We’re very entrepreneurial. We’re very dynamic. We’re built around innovation.
How is the company driving sustainability across the business?
We’ve been a real champion of sustainability in terms of some of the innovations like ReCover, where we can go in and recover products, recycle those products, and then utilize those products for other uses. We have over 1,000 products in the commercial division, and many of our products are red list-free. We don’t want to be a disposable economy anymore. We want to reuse, recycle, and repurpose what we can. Sustainability is at the core of our process—from R&D to product development to our manufacturing processes. It’s hardwired into our psyche. Hopefully, within the next year or so, we will be the undisputed leader in sustainability for flooring.
What is Durkan’s secret to success?
On the commercial side, our tagline is Believe in Better. Fundamentally, at the heart of our management team, we have this desire to always be better. How do you push the limits in sustainability? How do you push the limits in innovation? It’s part of our culture and that’s what drives our success.
Tell us about one of your newest products.
We launched EcoFlex One in March 2022, and it took three years and several million dollars to develop it. What makes it unique is it’s highly sustainable. We reuse pre-consumer materials to make it. And the benefits in the actual product provide multiple innovations. There’s an innovation in acoustics to manage sound quality. There are innovations within moisture control. it allows for breathability, so it doesn’t create mold or mildew.
What is your best business advice?
Play your own game. How do we leverage the assets we have to be able to go out there and solve our customers’ problems? The better we do, the more consistent and reliable we are over time, and the easier we make it for those clients.
This interview is part of a series highlighting some of the hospitality industry’s most successful manufacturers. Read our previous interviews with Bryan Ashley and Fabric Innovations.