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Translators and Interpreters – What Can They Do To Become More Successful? Part 3

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s just me and I’m back with some more tips and tricks, just as I promised I would be. Being a translator or an interpreter is not an easy job and I hope that you agree with me. There is so much happening around us most of the time and we are not aware of anything at all because we are usually too submerged in our work to pay attention to what is happening around us. That, my friend, is a sign of a good translator. However, it is not good to be so focused on your work. Yes, it is important, but you need to pay attention on what is happening around you.

Oh, we have started with advising already! So let’s get on with it then.

Ask for advice, never be shy to ask for help when you need it. However, be grateful and kind to the person. You are borrowing their time, so take them for a cup of coffee or offer to take them to dinner.

You know you have to read. Yes, you do. You need to read constantly to learn the language up close and personal. It is the best way to keep in touch with the trends and you will be able to localize the content in a much better way. This is the best way of learning a language and there is no other way to do it. What you read will be ingrained in your brain and when you start translating in that language, you will be able to adapt the style in your work.

Remember the last articles in this series? You will remember the lines where I tell you about the importance of clients. Here is another golden rule: never complain about your client. Not with your friends, or your colleagues or with your other clients. That presents a very unprofessional image of you. Also, never complain about your colleagues. Not with your friends, or your clients or with your other colleagues. Keep that to your mind, that rant is best when it stays mental.

Remember that your reputation is all you have. It is very important so never let anything tarnish it. You need to be on your A Game every time you sit at that desk to start translating.

Remember that your resources are limited. Your time is very valuable (a.k.a your only resource). Use it wisely. Time management is very important, especially if you have multiple clients and juggling multiple jobs. When you are working, divide your time, make time slots for reading the document, the initial translation, the translation and the proofreading part. This will help you save time on the translation.

When you are talking with a client, don’t talk about yourself and how well you work. Let the client talk, listen to what he has to say about the project and what he hopes to achieve from this translation. Ask about his goals because that will help you bring the best translation because you will know what he wants.

Also, put that finger down. When you are talking to your clients, minimize those hand gestures. Educate your client, tell him what you do and how you do it, but don’t put that finger in his face. When you are proofreading, be respectful of the translator. The poor guy just wanted constructive criticism so give that to him without being mean.

Ponder on that, everything I have said in this article while you are waiting for the final article in this series because trust me, you do not want to miss that. It will be beyond useful in your quest to become more successful.