Joshua Gould is a successful entrepreneur and the CEO of thebigword, one of the leading providers of language services in the world. With a unique background in the language services industry, Joshua was offered the opportunity to become the CEO of thebigword in 2019, a challenge that he accepted with enthusiasm and dedication. Since then, Joshua has continued to develop thebigword as a key language services provider and enhanced their technology. Known for his instrumental leadership, Joshua has implemented a customer-centric approach to language services, ensuring that clients of thebigword always receive the highest quality services. He has also developed innovative technology solutions that makes the process of providing language services more efficient and cost-effective.
In an interview with PerceptivX, he reveals more about himself and how he came to achieve the level of business success that he does.
Dynamic Leader. Unified Impact
Joshua Gould: “thebigword is a global language company and is one of the largest language service providers globally. We utilize the greatest minds and boundary-shattering technology to deliver phenomenal quality at scale for both our clients and linguist network. thebigword has been in business for 43 years and has 6 major operational centers globally. We are mission-driven and exists to eradicate the final barrier to global communication.
We help individuals daily on a large scale, whether it’s through the translation of a user manual or providing interpreting assistance at an international border. We eradicate the final barrier to global communication. In addition to this, we have a key focus on company initiatives that provide support to our employees and communities. Our ongoing commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives allow us to support both them and the climate by conducting business in a socially responsible manner, which in turn contributes positively to global economic, environmental and social progress. thebigword works incredibly hard to support many charities in need globally. Our Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) committee also empowers our employees to reach their full potential and gives them a sense of belonging through our positive culture promotion.”
When success is the only option
Joshua Gould: “I should mention that I was not the founder of thebigword. I joined almost two decades ago as a telemarketer working the night shift. I was born in the city of Leeds in the UK and, at 22, immigrated to a place you may have heard of in the US, New York City. I fulfilled a teenage dream to work on Wall Street in 2006—not great timing, but better late to the party than never. I won’t forget what it was like during the 2007 financial crisis and housing collapse. You could get a cab, and if you went to an after-work bar, you could even get a seat. For many, it was a tough time, but I hadn’t just moved my life 3,000 miles to be disrupted by the inconvenience of a recession; I was the CEO of thebigword Americas, a division of thebigword predominately selling to banks, and I knew to survive we would have to pivot. We focused on manufacturers who would trade with developing nations, and the plan came off, we also sought government and public sector contracts, as we didn’t believe the US government was about to slow spending, at least not with George Bush’s plan to inject money into infrastructure, businesses, and the military. We did well and grew the business by 500% before the recession was deemed over. So fast forward to now: I became the thebigword Group CEO in 2019 and have been focusing on our language technology roadmap with the view to delivering high quality and unprecedented service offerings at an affordable price.”
Fail. Learn. Succeed.
Joshua Gould: “My personal and professional motto is to be a cockroach. This may have negative connotations; however, cockroaches are the ultimate survivors. It is said that they would survive a global nuclear war due to their resiliency.
I think resiliency is the most under-taught lesson in schools and universities. The reality is that business, while exciting and fun, is equal parts challenging and scary, and I am concerned that in today’s society the youth are not well prepared to withstand the significant pressures and challenges that come with building a successful business and career.
We have a saying internally, and that is to fail fast and fail safe. At thebigword, we encourage our workforce to be bold and take sensible risks to push the boundaries of what is possible so that we can deliver unprecedented levels of service and quality to our client base. With this in mind, failure is very much part of our process.
We encourage our workforce to be data-driven and to build models to test theories to reduce the chances of failure. With that said, when you are trying to pioneer language technology, you are typically failing until you succeed. As part of our culture, we take a stubborn approach to our roadmap, and because of this, regardless of how many times we have to amend our code and design, our program usually meets its objectives. I believe that is why many of the world’s largest organizations trust thebigword.”
Joshua’s success secret
Joshua Gould: “Being the CEO of thebigword is all-encompassing, as we are a mission-driven organization for those who work in the business, it is more of a lifestyle than a job. However, it is important to be able to take a break now and again, and when I do, you can find me on a small boat in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, spending time with my wife and children, or tasting the latest in vegan cuisine as I am both a vegan and an investor in a plant-based company, Falafel Love.