Corinne Saunders stepped into her role as Managing Director, EMEA at Lionbridge on January 13, 2020. Working out of Brussels, she reports to CEO John Fennelly.
“My role is to develop the EMEA business at large, so all EMEA sales, account management, and marketing report directly to me. Lionbridge is a global matrix company, so other European functions report to me as well, but on a dotted line,” Saunders told Slator.
For now, her focus is “getting to know our company, connecting with Lionbridge’s various business groups both in Europe and globally, as well as learning our internal business dynamics and meeting directly with key customers.”
Saunders joined the language industry from the financial and information services sectors. She has held senior leadership positions at such companies as American Express, Dun & Bradstreet and, most recently, Wolters Kluwer, where she was CEO of Emerging & Developing Markets for six and a half years.
Asked what motivated the shift, Saunders said she wanted to join a company with a strong EMEA growth agenda, adding, “After speaking with John, I appreciated his leadership style and was particularly excited about his vision to make Lionbridge an even more truly customer-focused organization.”
Chen Oren – One Hour Translation
Chen Oren joined One Hour Translation as Vice President of Product Management on January 1, 2020. He reports to CEO Yair Tal and works out of the company’s Tel Aviv office.
Oren manages the international product team, including product managers and product marketing activities. “The mission of our product team is to deliver the right value at the right time. This may seem simple but finding this balance is a fine art. We strive for a profound understanding of our talents, clients, and customers by tuning into their needs, desires, and motivations,” he said.
Oren has a background in Agile and Scrum, principles that, as some have pointed out, the language industry has been slow to adopt. Oren pointed out, “I see a lot of similarities among the Agile principles, the Scrum methodologies, and the localization market. Companies are constantly looking for faster delivery with higher accuracy. With this in mind, empowering our talented community of translators will help us not only to allow but to actually drive the accuracy and constant improvement in the quality of translations to our clients.”
He recalled his experience as a buyer working with a couple of LSPs and how it will inform his new role. “A few years ago, as a Product Manager for a big multinational enterprise company, I worked with two different providers. The most memorable experience I had was crossing my fingers before going live, hoping that what I would receive would be accurate. The next thing I remember was receiving complaints from the users about some of the translations being too literal and at times even comical. This is definitely an experience I’m taking with me for this position and surely an issue I want to resolve.”
Tom Morris – Argos Multilingual
Tom Morris joined Poland-based LSP Argos Multilingual as Director of Global Sales on November 1, 2019. He is based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and reports to Chief Sales Officer Brian Sennett.
Morris comes to Argos from publicly listed Swedish printing company Elanders Americas, where he served for almost seven years as Director of Business Development. “Elanders is an Argos client, so transitioning from a global print solution to a global translations / localization solution has allowed me a wonderful client perspective,” Morris said. “My understanding of a client’s challenges domestically and internationally as they grow and expand around the world provides a great opportunity to listen to their challenges differently.”
Asked about his sales strategy, Morris said he has built his career on relationships, analysis, and solutions. He said he started as a golf professional and coach and would practise “listening for the fundamentals” with each individual student. “Next step, analyze quickly to provide initial steps for improvement in the moment and build a strategy for long-term success. As the challenges arise through the length of the relationship, I educate myself and use resources to solve the challenges. This process has served me well in my business life and personal life,” Morris said.
To generate leads, Morris gets involved in associations, such as the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM). He said, “Meeting new people in new industries and learning what their challenges are and how our solutions can overcome those challenges provides a great avenue for relationships. I find attending trade shows in a particular industry allows me to listen for the fundamentals and challenges in that industry and where our solutions may fit.”
Elisabeth Simonson – Wordcraft
Elisabeth Simonson joined Germany-based LSP Wordcraft on January 1, 2020 as Head of Sales. She reports to CEO Andre Hemker.
Simonson’s interest in foreign languages started at a young age and she speaks four of them fluently. She went on to study Translation for her bachelor’s degree and Conference Interpreting for her master’s.
“During my studies I noticed that the methods we were taught were ineffective, or rather that there are more possibilities out there,” Simonson told Slator. “I worked as a project manager for translations for two years and then decided to learn more about the technical / software aspect of content and CMS, which is also very important — hence Wordcraft.”
As far as sales strategies go, she said, “Honesty works way better than those confusing sales tactics à la ‘We sell emotions’ and so on.” She added, “In the language industry, we usually help customers communicate, so it feels more real and honest than what I experienced working in the banking and telecom sectors.”
Simonson said she does not use “elaborate sales tactics” but approaches each customer differently, learns their requirements and how they work, and then offers them a solution based on what they want and need. She added that any strategy is based on “telling the truth about what we do and how we do it — it’s all very straightforward. Many customers then recommend us to their partners and they recommend us further, and so on. Other than that, I sometimes visit networking events where I meet new potential leads.”
Debbie Nicholas – Global Lingo
Debbie Nicholas joined Global Lingo as Business Development Director on January 21, 2020. Based in Sydney and tasked with responsibilities in the Australia and New Zealand region, she reports to APAC Sales Director Sandip Roy, who works out of the Singapore office. Nicholas worked with SDL for seven years prior to joining Global Lingo.
Asked about her typical lead generation process, Nicholas said it is a combination of inbound and outbound, “building on and developing existing relationships with our current client base, and reaching out to establish new relationships.” Rather than specific KPIs, she places more importance on realizing opportunities by understanding clients and their business and, ultimately, achieving results.
Despite the ubiquity of newer communication tools like social media for achieving business goals, she said the core values of what clients are looking for has stayed the same, such as “good service, quality, and value, combined with an innovative approach. Understanding and taking an interest in the client’s business and business objectives is important, so it is vital to do your research.”