North American Headquarters - Richmond, Virginia
(804) 323-0467

Trulife Group – True Leadership Success

Mark Ownby, ACUMEN Corporation, VP of Operations, shares a recent experience.

I have been implementing software for small, medium, and large companies since the late 1980s (yes, they had computers back in the dark ages). I have had projects that went smoothly and projects that – well, let’s just say I wouldn’t want to repeat them. The not-so-good ones had many different issues that caused the problems; I would like to think that I learned something from each of them.

I much prefer to focus on the good ones. They all tend to have one thing in common – good teamwork and leadership from the client-side. I recently completed one such implementation. ACUMEN Corporation has done quite a few ‘rescued’ implementations – projects started by another partner, or in some cases by the client by themselves – that we then take over and complete. This was an example of one of those – Trulife had already implemented the software at two of their locations, and when getting ready to start the third, they determined, for whatever reason, that they would prefer not to use the same partner. They searched for an alternative and found us – and I am so glad they did!

This project was not only one of the good ones – I would say it was one of the best ones that I have been a part of in over 30 years. The reason is simple – client teamwork and leadership.

Poor leadership, in many cases, dictates that the project will be done, expects their team to do the work and then when things don’t go well, looks for someone to blame.

Great leadership, as in this project, was enthusiastically involved from the beginning. They participated in every session, encouraged the team, conducted training sessions, and ensured the overall success. That attitude and effort trickled down the entire team.

While acknowledging some trepidation at taking on a new system after many years of using their old one, they approached it with enthusiasm and energy rather than fear and negativity. That only happened because their leadership was not just talking the talk but walking the walk from start to finish.

I would love to be able to take a carbon copy (another dark ages reference) of this approach and replicate it for our projects. That is certainly the goal, but it takes a great effort from the client team, and particularly their leadership, to make it happen. Thank you, Diane, Rick, Chris, Debbie, Ed, Phil, Jenn, and the rest of the team for reminding me why I enjoy this work so much!

To find out more about how it’s done, contact us at and let’s talk!