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By: Natalie O'Laughlin on September 11th, 2012

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CEO Spotlight: Scott Ulvi, Triumph Enterprises

Total Rewards | Risk Management | Business Management & Strategy | Employee Relations


Triumph Enterprises CEO, Scott Ulvi ensures success by utilizing the power of his team’s intellect, advancing a culture of exceptional performance, promoting creative and innovative solutions and above all, embracing change. After winning a 2012 Apollo Award and recently being named a Government Contractor of the Year finalist by the Fairfax Chamber, we think he must be onto something. Read more to find out!

Helios: What’s your passion as a leader, Scott?

Scott Ulvi: If I had to boil it down, it would be to help the employees understand what our vision is for the company and to get them into a position where they can be significant contributors to realizing the vision.

Helios: Will you go into more detail about what that vision is for Triumph?

Scott Ulvi: Our vision has existed since the beginning of Triumph about 7 years ago. It’s helping people navigate how to manage the uncertainty from the current state to seeing the future. People get locked into their day to day thinking with their heads down at their desks plugging away, and it’s hard to pull your head up to look down the road. Our vision helps leaders prepare to become adaptable to their clients accelerating change along with their own.

Helios: How does Triumph embrace change both internally and with your clients as you’ve grown?

Scott Ulvi: Let’s start internal. The strategy has always been to be a growth company. We knew that we would grow fast and aggressively, but with control. So in developing our goals and objectives, we keep our plans for growth in mind and think about what we will need to change as we are moving forward.

When you experience a challenge with a client, you learn from it and discover what you can do differently making you grow. I’ve found that anytime we’re faced friction or difficulties it’s because of one of the two things: communication - and by this I mean not only talking, but listening as well and  managing expectations is the second. Clearly identifying expectations and creating a process to monitor them on a regular basis was one of our best lessons learned. We tend to work towards continuous improvement.

Helios: How does your organization align individual goals to the organization’s strategic goals?

Scott Ulvi: Our company strategy is evolving over time as you would expect with a company changing. My goal is to become a significant company and identify the customers we’re serving. The rest of it gets identified with our leadership team who take pieces of the strategy and translates it into plans that are tied to goals for each individual and the organization. The infrastructure must support the goals to maintain the culture and focus we have on our clients and our people. This keeps pace with the change and allows us not flip upside down.

Helios: Describe the impact of an employee engagement initiative that you are most proud of.

Scott Ulvi: We saw this in black and white. When we didn’t win the Apollo Awards in 2011, we noticed that the one thing we were missing was focus on employee engagement. This year, we hired an outside company to design and implement employee engagement surveys. Here’s what we heard: we’re a fun place to work, leadership asks for feedback and in return they give it to us freely. Their voices get heard because we act on their feedback and communicate what progress is being made.

Helios: What’s your culture like at Triumph?

Scott Ulvi: We’re all about our clients – both external and internal so we’ve fostered an environment that is completely client centric.  Each ring of our infrastructure focuses on our clients whether directly or indirectly. The leadership team welcomes open lines of communication and routinely recognize and reward employee contributions. We also promote an environment that encourage team members to develop and expand their skill sets and organizes several social gatherings and team building events throughout the year.

Helios: What’s one type of community service activity that you do?

Scott Ulvi: Triumph hosts an annual Charity Golf Tournament supporting the Army Emergency Relief. Army Emergency Relief takes care of Soldiers and their Families by providing financial assistance in a time of need.

Since our first tournament, we’ve gone from raising $4,000 to $38,000 in donations this year. We were able to do this from having an established operational team in the company who put this on and by the people touched by this cause. We had a record breaking number of 134 golfers and sponsors this year. We had a great bunch of partners and friends who were supportive of the cause and stepped up to contribute.

Click here to find out more about Triumph’s Annual Charity Golf Tournament.

Do you have advice for organizations going through change?

Plan and communicate because things will happen that you don’t anticipate. You can’t just have the managers or the seniors by in, you need to engage, develop and train everyone to be part of the planning process. Aligning the top-level strategies and mid-level strategies should be automatic.

Make sure you address lessons that can be learned in your future planning. Challenges turn into positive surprises.

About Triumph

Triumph Enterprises is bringing a new level of service to the Federal contracting field, delivering proactive solutions to their client’s mission responsibilities and their need for fast and effective solutions. They provide Management Solutions, Training and Exercise Solutions, Information Technology Solutions, Event Planning Solutions, and Technical Solutions. For more information, please visit