Camilo Munoz, Managing Director of Translation Source, Interviewed by the Wharton School of Business

August 24, 2010

Earlier this year, Camilo Munoz (G’99, W’99) attended the Wharton Global Alumni Forum in Bogota in his native Colombia. Here he talks about his exciting and varied career path since graduation.

Wharton School of Business Alumni, Camilo Munoz

What is your occupation?

I am the Founder and CEO of Translation Source. We help companies communicate in any language across 4 continents, 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week. The company is also currently launching a language interpretation solution via video conference.

What effect has Wharton had on your life?

Wharton has had an impact in my life at different levels, but the major effect has been that the School gave me the tools and confidence to manage my own career in a more satisfying and rewarding manner. In my case, that meant becoming an entrepreneur. A little interesting fact about my career progression is that I went to Wharton to become a Wall Street banker. Wharton helped me achieved that goal – I went to work at Lehman Brothers after my MBA; however, in the process, the Wharton experience changed my career expectations and goals and all my pre-Wharton plans ended up fully altered.

How would you describe your career path to fellow alumni?

It has been fun, bumpy and different than expected. Most of my pre-Wharton life took place in Colombia, my native country. My post-Wharton career has taken place in the United States and, mostly, as an entrepreneur in the language services industry. I believe in taking educated risks and that often means doing things a bit differently from the norm. The road has not always been glamorous, but it has always been exciting.

Do you have a story that illustrates the Wharton ROI?

In cold numbers, my Wharton investment was paid in two years by simply calculating my pre- and post-Wharton income differential. However, the real ROI is much greater, though more difficult to calculate. In my case, the Wharton ROI keeps going up every time I meet a potential client through the network or I share ideas with fellow alumni.

Please describe your experience with the Wharton alumni community and share any instances in which you have remained a part of the community as an alumnus.

I am fairly active in the local Wharton Houston Club which, by the way, is pretty well run. I also attend many events: This year I went to the Latin American Forum in Colombia and to my 10th year alumni reunion in Philadelphia. I highly recommend both events. I also interview MBA candidates.

What is it about your work that most excites you?

My big picture motivation drivers are (1) making a positive impact and (2) creating something that lasts. Currently, I am very excited about our video interpretation initiative. I believe this solution will increase language and health care access in an efficient manner and it will also target an often overlooked audience – LEP (Limited English Proficiency) persons in the United States. There are currently 20-25 million persons who do not speak English in the United States.

What books are you reading today?

I am usually reading one business and one literature book at any given time. Right now, my business book is “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell and my literature book is “Buda Blues” by Mario Mendoza.

What gets you up in the morning?

My daughter Isabella and my son Nicolas.

What do you see as the next big change in your industry/niche?

Technology adoption is the biggest shift in the interpretation and translation landscape. In the interpretation industry, the adoption of on-demand, video interpretation solutions will change a landscape currently dominated by expensive on-site interpreters and limited interpretation telephonic services. In the translation industry, machine translation is improving and will change the role translators play in the next 10 to 20 years. I believe translators tasks will increasingly be related to editing and proofreading rather than straight translation work.

 

If you would like additional information on this topic or have questions on planning and executing your next translation or multilingual initiative, contact us today for a free 30-minute consultation or call us at (800) 413-7838.

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