Summer is nearly upon us in the Midwestern US, and for folks around these parts, that can only mean one thing: heading outside and soaking up some rays. For Todd Truesdell, Partner at Maven Wave, that means hitting the golf course and cheering on his daughter at one of her many sporting events. At Maven Wave, Truesdell leads the Data Analytics, ML / AI horizontal, which means he has no shortage of plates to keep spinning at all times — and it’s why we appreciate him taking the time to chat with us for this month’s leadership spotlight. Read on for the full interview!
Tell us about yourself.
I’ve been doing data analytics for more than 25 years, working for a variety of consulting firms from “Big 5” to smaller and medium-sized specialized consulting firms. I spent about five years working in manufacturing and FSI. I was excited to join Maven Wave because of their focus on cloud back in 2016. I saw it as an opportunity to start and grow a cloud data analytics business.
I’m originally from West Michigan and currently reside in the Ann Arbor area (but bleed Green!!). I have a 14-year-old daughter who keeps me on my toes, and I’m enjoying watching her grow up and excel in her sports.
Tell us about your role at Maven Wave.
As a partner leading the Data Analytics, ML / AI horizontal, I am responsible for delivery management and building our go-to-market strategy. When I started at Maven Wave, we were a small team (less than five people). Today, with the help of the Visual BI acquisition and integration, our team has grown to nearly 300 people! I am humbled and proud to lead such a great team and love being part of the journey to grow it even further.
What are the top highlights of your career so far?
- Winning our end-to-end first Cloud Data Modernization on Google Cloud Platform way back in 2017 at AAA Mountain West Group.
- Building and supporting the strongest team I have ever been a part of.
- Integrating the superb talents and people from the Visual BI acquisition and integration.
What is your favorite part of working at Maven Wave?
The people, the culture, and the team; seeing our consultants grow and develop over my time at Maven Wave.
Of course, I also love hearing about the pursuit wins. But more importantly, I love getting emails and phone calls from our client stakeholders about how great our team did when helping them with their strategic data initiatives.
Which of the 7 C’s is most meaningful to you and why?
They’re all very important, and together they cover the foundation of Maven Wave’s DNA. But for me, it’s the culture. I love the collaboration I see every day amongst our teammates and the team-orientated approach to tackling tough challenges. Let’s face it, high-end professional services are not easy! It takes patience and humility (while remaining confident) to meet the challenges we face in the workforce and with our clients.
Where do you see the cloud market in the next few years?
The cloud “arena” will be the defacto standard for delivering most, if not all, IT services for companies. The cloud will transform into being even more transparent when developing solutions.
Many predict — and I am 100% with them — that within the next 10 years, ML / AI will be the mechanism for developing and deploying IT capabilities. ML / AI will take a predominant role in custom application development, infrastructure provisioning, and data analytics applications.
What goals do you have for your team in 2022? What about long-term goals?
Financial goals are obviously the most important, but that is always easy to say. For 2022, I want to keep leveraging our current momentum to continue to win large / strategic data analytics program work that provides our teammates great opportunities to grow their careers and, at the same time, blow our customers’ expectations out of the water.
Long term: As a data analytics team, we are always thinking about the next big technological wave that’s going to help our clients leverage data even faster and more efficiently. As we all know, information and data are the new oil. Companies are demanding more and more of it, but how do we help them make sense of all this data faster and more efficiently (and create and / or maintain an advantage against their competitors).
What is something about you that always surprises people?
Well, it used to be that I had a large lifted pick-up truck, but I lost that to an engine fire last Christmas. It might surprise some that I am a big country music fan and enjoy attending concerts.
How do you like to spend your time outside of work?
I spend a significant amount of time watching my daughter play sports. It seems like we have an event multiple times a week and most weekends. Other areas where I spend my time is gardening, playing with my dog (a Boxer), golfing, and traveling.
Rapid Question Round
- Brand new or vintage? Brand new. I can’t fix anything. I am not handy!
- City or countryside? Countryside. I live in the woods on a dirt road.
- Introvert or extrovert? That would depend, but mostly extrovert.
- Music or podcasts? Tough one! But have to go with music.
- Karaoke: Singing or spectating? Spectating, but I am not afraid of karaoke.
- Comedy or drama? Comedy
- Art, science, or history? Science
- Early bird or night owl? Early bird
- Fiction or nonfiction? Nonfiction; I love a good Netflix doc.
- Planning it or winging it? Planning; I get super stressed winging it.
- Favorite vacation spot: Arizona, Sea Island, or Northern Michigan.
- Favorite season: Summer
- What you’re currently listening to: I am not an avid podcaster, but my favorite right now is Golf Subpar.
- Recommend one movie, TV show, book, or podcast: TV Show: Winning Time: The Rise of the Laker Dynasty. Magic Johnson was my childhood idol growing up. Again, go Green!
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