Ben Walker – CEO of Transcription Outsourcing

Develop a solid work ethic as soon as possible. It will pay huge dividends sooner rather than later.


Ben Walker, entrepreneur and visionary leader, is CEO of Transcription Outsourcing , which provides user-friendly and cost-effective transcription services for organizations all over the world. His company serves businesses in the medical, legal, law enforcement, financial, and general business industries.

Prior to founding his company, Ben spent nearly a decade as a mortgage loan officer. The transactional nature of the role didn’t suit him, so he carved his own path. Now a sought-after thought leader, Ben has been quoted in various publications and websites, including Entrepreneur, The Associated Press, Inc., Built In Colorado, ColoradoBiz, and LinkedIn.

Ben lives in Denver, Colorado. He has served on the boards of the Colorado Medical Group Management Association and the Colorado Association of Healthcare Executives. In his free time, you can find him playing tennis or golf, hiking, walking his dog, or listening to podcasts about business and life.

Where did the idea for Transcription Outsourcing come from?

I’m also a part owner of eTransMed, a medical transcription company. The organization wanted to continue to concentrate on medical transcription, and I wanted to diversify and add more service lines to our offerings. I broke off and founded Transcription Outsourcing. I slowly added legal, law enforcement, financial, and general business transcription service areas — industries where I saw a lot of opportunity.

What does your day typically look like, and how do you make it productive?

My typical day includes a lot of email correspondence between clients, employees, and vendors of all kinds. I do my best to segment my days into blocks of time when I work on my most important tasks in order of importance, without any interruptions from email, phone calls, texts, or meetings. Segmenting my day like this helps keep me organized and refreshed, and it helps me work through a lot more tasks and projects than ever before. I also have more free time to do things outside the office.

How do you bring ideas to life?

If I have an idea for something that will help us grow or innovate in any way, I email my team members and ask for their thoughts. We don’t respond to ideas immediately. Usually, we’ll add an idea to our weekly company meeting agenda so everyone can have a few days to think about it before discussing it as a group.

When we discuss ideas, there’s no rigid or formal process — it’s a free-for-all. Usually, the person who sent the request for brainstorming kicks it off, and then we go through it together until we arrive at a conclusion we all agree on. If we can’t reach an agreement, I will usually make the final call.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

Almost across the board, we’re seeing an increase in transcription requests from many different types of companies, agencies, and individuals. Because there’s so much need for data today, people are increasingly relying on transcription companies to accurately transcribe audio or video. Law enforcement and academic transcription services seem to be growing the most, and we really like working with both.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

I strive to always do what must be done. I don’t like putting tasks off or — even worse — not doing them at all because they aren’t fun or take a long time, with little or no immediate payoff.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Develop a solid work ethic as soon as possible. It will pay huge dividends sooner rather than later.

If you do this, you will be more successful in your work and get promoted sooner. And if you go out on your own, you will have a much greater chance of success. I used to fly by the seat of my pants, which works for a while, but if you want to scale, a solid work ethic is a must.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?

Body language, tone of voice, facial expressions, the use of certain words or phrases — these all matter, whether someone else sees them or not. The subtleties of human psychology all add up to tell you a lot about a person or company. For instance, slumped shoulders, no eye contact, and using negative words like “just” or “only” can really turn people off.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.

About a year ago, I met with a public relations expert to see what he and his company could do for me. Once he told me the benefits he’d experienced by focusing on PR and social media, it dawned on me that I could benefit by doing the same. Since then, my website traffic has skyrocketed, and numerous people have messaged me on LinkedIn to ask about our services.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

I had a hard time accepting that the medical industry was not going to return to using transcription like it did in the past. It took me a few years — and a lot of wasted time and money — before I finally realized that I should be focusing my energies on the industries that were paying off with new clients and increased work.

As a result, we now have more law firms and government agencies working with us. We reply to more law enforcement RFPs because we have the references and experience to win them.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

If you can speak and translate in a foreign language, start a translation side business. Increasingly, people are moving to the U.S. who can’t speak English but need access to the same services and data that English speakers do.

What is the best $100 you recently spent?

I recently bought whiteboard paint for our offices and conference room. We now have more than enough room to write on the walls and don’t have to keep erasing information as we work through major projects.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

We use Hubstaff to track employees’ time and productivity. It saves us anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours per pay period because we’re not having to verify everything in spreadsheets.

What is the one book you recommend our community should read, and why?

Managing By The Numbers: A Commonsense Guide To Understanding And Using Your Company’s Financials” — this will help you get a firm grasp on how important cash is and how your financials really work.

What is your favorite quote?

“You pay a person for his or her hands, but they’ll give you their brains and their hearts for free. All you have to do is ask!” — Jack Welch

Employees aren’t just workers; they can contribute a lot more and have different perspectives on things. Why not ask them what they think about a situation or whether they have any ideas that can improve the company? I hire people smarter than me on purpose, and I know the key to retaining them is taking advantage of their skills and challenging them.

Key Learnings

  • By segmenting your day into blocks of time and working on tasks in order of importance without interruption, you’ll not only stay organized and refreshed, but you’ll also get more done.
  • Before you move forward with an idea, get input from your team.
  • Always strive to do what must be done. Don’t put off tasks or avoid them altogether just because they aren’t fun or don’t offer immediate gratification.
  • Be aware of your body language, tone of voice, and facial expressions, as well as the words you use — these all reveal a lot about you. Be conscious of the message you’re conveying to the world.
  • Read “Managing By The Numbers: A Commonsense Guide To Understanding And Using Your Company’s Financials” to get a firm understanding of the importance of cash and how your financials actually work.


Benjamin Walker on LinkedIn:
Transcription Outsourcing on Twitter: @datatranscriber