It’s been 20 days since IAPTI’s Conference in Athens dropped its curtains and I took my time to absorb the lectures, the speakers, the attendees, the information…
I have to confess this has been my first-time, in many things!!!
My first time in a translation conference.
My first time meeting so many foreign colleagues, in person.
My first time seeing facebook come to life.
My first time seeing the faces behind the blogs.
In many ways, it was an eye-and-mind opening experience.
So let me sum up the 10 things I have learned during those 2 wonderful days:
- Think about and explore your professional needs
- Plan and define them.
- Go off-road if you have to, in order to explore new grounds & possibilities.
- Trust and believe in yourself.
- Then, “sell” and “promote” yourself.
- Don’t sell yourself short.
- Define your boundaries & their elasticity.
- Stick and defend your plans, your choices, your needs, your dreams.
- … and customize them, if needed.
- And, last but not least, Stay calm and Carry-on Translating!!!
So, I have to say, that I left Athens with more food-for-thought than I could chew!!!!
It is true that I have spent a delightful professional weekend in Athens at IAPTI’s Conference on 20& 21 September, immersed in on&off topic translation issues, business advice and networking possibilities.
I have to confess it was a first for me, in many ways. It was the first time I ever attended an international translation conference, it was the first time I was among so many colleagues since my university years, it was the first weekend I have spend in the last 10 years that was strictly translation-related and it was the first time in 10 years that I have left my husband and daughters for a business trip! So, a lot of “firsts” there!
Now, what I did before going:
- Packed my small black suitcase (no “little black dress” included!)
- Made a note to not forget my fresh-out-of the digital oven business cards with my -new logo
- Picked a book to keep my company during the bus trip
- Explained to my girls that this was a business (and not a holiday) trip (now quite sure they believed me)
- Kissed my husband goodbye and promised to behave
- And, last but not least, turned-on my business, professional, alas friendly mood on!
What I did at the Conference:
- Met old and new friends
- Made new business acquaitances
- Saw my facebook translation forums come to life (the Leagues, the TTNS etc…)
- Heard some of my favorite bloggers speak live (Kevin Lossner, Valeria Aliperta, Marta M Stelmaszak, Rose Newell and so forth)
- Eavesdropped some very interesting translation gossips (but I never kiss and tell!)
- And, last but not least, won one of the big prizes of the event, a Memoq licence (please, keep-away the green-eyed monster of jealously)
What I did after:
- I set my mind thinking and planning, while preparing my little black suitcase for the ride home
- Packed the new civil-law dictionary I had discovered on my bookstore raid on Friday
- Bought some gifts for my little girls to make my absence worth-while
- Finished my book on the bus home
- And started taking notes for this (and other) blog post.
So, all in all, this is the before, during and after.
As for what I have learned, liked and thought about the Conference… well, that’s a whole new post!
Please, stay tuned!
Quality is what a prospective client should look for in a translation agency or a freelance translator. The quality of the final product should be the No 1 definitive factor of a prospective translation project. A cheap and quick translation may be alluring but in the end its Return on Investment may be quite lower than expected.
Quality is based on
■ In depth Knowledge of the subject matter as well as language matters
in both source and target language
■ Relevant Termbases and Translation Memories
■ Dictionaries, Corpora, language resources
And last but not least, meticulous proofreading of the “finished” translation, checking the following:
Proofreading is something many of the big agencies avoid in order to cut down the cost, or in other cases, the charge extra for it. However, would you buy an unrefined or unfinished product out of a shelf or to use in your everyday life just to cut down your cost of living, regardless of the possible dangers or consequences? Would you sell it to your clients (pretending that it’s poor quality balances its low price?)? Are you prepared to lose a prospective client due to language failure?
■ Use of CAT tools in order to ensure a consistent and flawless translation process.
■ Own various translation memories as well as termbases per language and per field created from previous projects or relevant corpora. Maintain and keep up them up to date.
■ For each of your clients keep a dedicated translation memory.
And proofread, proofread, proofread!!!!
The appeal and success of one’s products or services
in a foreign country is as good as his language provider’s skills.
Wordings translations was created out of my passion for language. This is a blog to share my thoughts on translation, language and language services. It will run parallel to my main business site http://www.wordingstranslations.com which I like to think as my portal to providing my services to clients who are looking for high quality translations, from English, French and Italian into Greek, and require high quality standards, respect for deadlines and true dedication to their business purposes.
The main pillars of moving away from being a freelancer offering my services to translation agencies and pursuing a direct service to potential customers were the following:
After working for the “middle man” for so many years, I felt the need for a direct, more personal approach towards translation. I like to know my end-clients, have a more concrete idea about their translation needs and provide them with a better translation service at a more reasonable price than the one they were getting until now through the big agencies channels.
I’m a firm believer that businesses grow through stable, constant and true communications and relations between clients and providers. That’s what I’m here to offer you: be your partner in your business ventures, offering you a strong linguistic support that you can depend on.
Translation agencies are nowadays a big melting pan: they are offering every language combination possible at any given field. And this raises the question of quality! Can they truly support what they are promising? Can they in fact control and certify the quality of the product they are offering to their clients?
I’ll leave that answer to you, just with a quick reminder that we all have come across funny, misleading or even incomprehensible translations in instructions manuals, financial reports, marketing material, law or business contracts, or even food labels etc. throughout the biggest companies of the word.
So, by creating Wordings Translations I’m offering high level professional translation services from English to Greek, Italian to Greek and French to Greek at a budget you can afford, that will really give the best Return on a client’s Investment.