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Q&A with Morningside’s Co-CEOs

morningside translations new leadership2017 has been a year of positive change, growth and new leadership here at Morningside. Tom Klein and Roland Lessard, our new co-CEOs, have big plans to expand Morningside’s product & service offerings and continue to enhance the overall client experience in 2018. Klein and Lessard are both veterans of content management and technology-enabled businesses. Most recently, they served together as top executives at employment background check leader Sterling Talent Solutions — a client-service driven business that they helped build into the largest background screening company in the world. Here is a brief Q&A with our new leadership.

What inspired you to join the language services industry?

We were attracted to this industry for two reasons. First, the explosion of digital content means that translations are a must-have service. If you want to be a global player today, whether you’re in retail, legal services, pharmaceuticals or what have you, you need to convey your message in the buyer’s native tongue. Second, not only did we want to enter a growing industry – we were interested in translations because at its core it’s about something bigger than just numbers. Translations help companies improve communication, break down cultural barriers, and bridge the gap between businesses and consumers around the globe. It’s exciting to be a part of that.

Why did you pick Morningside, specifically?

We spent a full year researching the language services market, speaking to over 50 LSPs and a few dozen industry experts. When we found Morningside, we fell in love with its size, the specialty niche markets it serves, and its reputation for quality and subject matter expertise. Morningside’s talented employees, diverse customer base, consistent historical growth, brand awareness and quality systems made it clear that this company was the right choice for us.

What motivates you?

We have a deep passion for helping others learn and expand their skill sets. Knowing that there is an opportunity to help or educate someone while at the same time delivering a great product is a very special opportunity. We do not take that opportunity for granted. We try to perform at our best every day, and that makes every day better than the one before it.

What changes have you made at Morningside?

We’ve been focused on making major investments in human capital in order to enhance the customer experience through best-in-class products and services. Over the past six months, we brought on new senior executives to lead our finance and operations departments, expanded our human resources and billing departments, and built out brand new Professional Service and Product Departments (more on that next). Additionally, we are investing heavily in innovation by expanding our development resources and establishing new partnerships with known technology leaders.

What has been your most satisfying moment so far at Morningside?

We took great pride in creating two new departments dedicated to our clients. The Professional Service Group (PSG) is laser-focused on new clients who are just starting out with us. The PSG team is responsible for white glove account and user setup, client configuration of technology and language assets, and quality and turnaround time deliverables. This department operates from multiple locations around the globe so that we can provide complete coverage in multiple time zones, including rapid response for quotes and new project communications. We don’t know of anyone else in language services bringing professional service capabilities to new clients. The Product Department is a team built around launching innovative and market leading products and platforms for each of our niche customer bases. They are also partnering with our Marketing team to bring you educational and industry knowledge through webinars, forums, white papers, and other mediums. Both of the new departments are critical to our goal of making Morningside even more focused on and attentive to the client experience.

Where do you see Morningside in 5 years?

Within five years, Morningside will be the predominant player in the industries we service with best-in-class customer service coupled with leading technology solutions. And we plan to keep developing and expanding the special relationships we have with our clients.

Who or what has been your greatest inspiration?

Unlike many people who can reference one book or one person that has been the most impactful or inspirational, we both feel that it’s been a collective impact from multiple people throughout different stages of our lives. If one is humble enough to realize they don’t know everything – and learn from others not only what to do, but what not to do – then life becomes one continual learning opportunity.

What are your hobbies?

We are both avid golfers. Roland loves scuba diving and Tom enjoys traveling. He just returned from an incredible trip to New Zealand!