Resumen del seminario regional de ProZ.com en Córdoba, Argentina (2014) 1

IMG_8177Apenas pasadas las ocho de la mañana del sábado 8 de noviembre de 2014, los asistentes al seminario regional de ProZ.com en Córdoba, Argentina ya se agrupaban sobre una de las veredas del dinámico barrio de Nueva Córdoba. Iban llegando solos, en grupos, con mochilas en las espaldas, anotadores en las manos y algún que otro bostezo pendiente. Algunos de ellos estudiantes, otros profesionales con años de experiencia a cuestas. ¿Qué tenían en común todos? Las ganas de aprender, conectarse con colegas y divertirse.

IMG_8214Una vez hecha la acreditación de más de 130 asistentes, fue Juán Manuel Macarlupu Peña el que los recibió con un enorme abrazo con perfil de traductor profesional. Y ya antes del desayuno, así, con hambre de conocimiento y de medialunas, Juan Manuel los invitó a trabajar juntos para descubrir a la traducción como profesión y como negocio, delineando posibles salidas laborales, enumerando diferentes habilidades indispensables del traductor y detallando estrategias para no parecer novatos.

Finalmente, el café no se hizo esperar más, y antes de dar paso al resto de los módulos del programa, actuó como un perfecto punto de partida para que los asistentes se conozcan y comiencen a sacar mayor provecho de asistir a este evento. ¿Cómo te llamás? ¿En qué año estás? ¿En qué te especializás? Estas preguntas iban de traductor a traductor, de estudiante a estudiante, de colega a colega, actuales y futuros.

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El seminario continuó con información sobre la situación del mercado laboral, tácticas para encontrar clientes, estrategias para determinar honorarios y negociar efectivamente, y una extensa discusión acerca de las diferentes posibilidades de cobro –nacional e internacional, culminando con una foto grupal cargada de buena voluntad y de amenaza de lluvia (que no tardó en hacerse efectiva).

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¿Qué faltó? ¡Nada! Si hasta nos reunimos luego del seminario para verificar identidades y credenciales en los perfiles de ProZ.com, y compartir una merienda en un bar de la ciudad mientras conversamos sobre las ventajas y desventajas de la traducción automática, las diferentes formas de especializarse, los métodos de enseñanza en las diferentes instituciones educativas de la República Argentina, y, como si fuese poco, sobre la posibilidad de volver a vernos pronto, muy pronto.

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Lo que resta…

  • Compartir fotos y videos a través de redes sociales con el hashtag #CordobaProZ1, y ver las fotos y videos que otros han compartido:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/1470141453256774/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/search?f=realtime&q=%23CordobaProZ1&src=typd

ProZ.com: http://www.proz.com/conference/652?page=image_gallery

  • Ver y descargar los certificados de asistencia en la sección “Participación en conferencias” del perfil de ProZ.com (sólo asistentes al evento): http://www.proz.com/profile

Gracias, Juan Manuel Macarlupu Peña, por la organización de este evento y a todos los que asistieron y aprovecharon la oportunidad de aprender, conectarse con colegas y divertirse. Aquí les dejo un video-resumen del evento y espero verlos muy pronto!

Getting the most out of industry events: Part ten 2

This is the tenth –and last– post in a series of weekly blog posts with tips to get the most out of translation industry events (click here to see a full list of previous posts). As explained in the first part, tips are grouped into “before the event”, “during the event” and “after the event” for easy reference. Please feel free to post below and share your tip(s)!


After the event

Tip 10: organize your own event

As mentioned in the first part of this series, translation industry events are probably one of the most important parts in the marketing strategy of many language professionals. By attending conferences, workshops, seminars and other industry events, translators and interpreters not only get the chance to learn about new industry trends, but also to network with colleagues while promoting themselves. The same principle applies to organizing translation industry events, where organizers can not only learn and network with colleagues, but also do something different that enhances their translation business and professional profile.

So, what are the benefits of organizing a translation industry event? Why would anyone want to devote time and effort in setting up a conference, a seminar, a workshop? Initially, language professionals who have organized at least one translator event have reported the following benefits:

  1. Interaction with people from all around the globe.
  2. Networking not only within the local community, but also within the international translation community.
  3. Acquisition of new interpersonal and organizational skills.
  4. Relationship with companies, associations and other major players in the industry.
  5. Gained exposure.

Organizing an event is not for everyone though -it requires a great deal of time, responsibility and dedication. Willingness to interact with other language professionals and form relationships with them is a must, but organizers should also meet other criteria if they want to organize an event that has the purpose of providing language professionals with the opportunity to network, learn, expand their businesses and have fun. These criteria include:

  • Experience with industry events (as attendee, co-organizer or organizer).
  • Active participation in the translation community.
  • Reactive, responsive and collaborative attitude.
  • Task orientation.
  • Business understanding (keeping in mind that the organization of an event is a business investment for all involved, including for event attendees).
  • Creativity.

If you believe that you have all of the above and you would like to learn new skills, network with colleagues and market yourself, you may consider organizing an event for translators in your country. There are several ways to do it either individually or with the support of colleagues, private companies or associations.

Becoming a ProZ.com event organizer

Rather than seeking to organize events on its own in locations around the world, or on a variety of topics, ProZ.com normally seeks to provide others with the tools, support and promotion that they need to organize events.

Applied in varying degrees for various events and event formats, this “enabling” approach make it possible to offer low-cost events that have a local focus, or that delve deeply into a given topic. It also makes it possible for ProZ.com events to be held in many languages.

ProZ.comEvents

ProZ.com conferences, powwows, workshops and virtual events.

Utilizing both online and offline approaches, a variety of specific event formats have evolved at ProZ.com:

Powwows – informal meetings, usually carried out in-person, often over a meal.

Virtual events – events with planned agendas, carried out primarily online using video, chat, etc. (sometimes with a corresponding real-world component).

In-person events - events with planned agendas, carried out primarily in-person (and ideally streamed and recorded).

Events have been held with various other formats, and more formats (for example, hybrid formats that combine virtual and in-person elements) can be imagined and explored.

If you would like to give it a try at organizing an event with the support of ProZ.com, go ahead!

In the end, the translation industry is like other industries, in that it is important for professionals to have opportunities to learn, network and socialize among peers. Then why not get the most out of an industry event by organizing it yourself?

Have you ever organized an industry event or considered organizing one? 

Please share.

Getting the most out of industry events: Part nine Reply

This is the ninth post in a series of weekly blog posts with tips to get the most out of translation industry events (click here to see a full list of previous posts). As explained in the first part, tips are grouped into “before the event”, “during the event” and “after the event” for easy reference. Please feel free to post below and share your tip(s)!


After the event

Tip 9: keep in touch

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Coffee break during the ProZ.com 2014 international conference in Pisa, Italy

Translation industry events represent a great opportunity to meet potential clients and collaborators. However, meeting them and taking to them during the event may not be enough to get them to remember you and to later contact you for collaboration. So, what can you do to make sure event attendees you met and that may become clients keep your name in mind? Let’s see…

  • Send them a nice-meeting-you email: if you did your homework during the event, you should have a few email addresses and business cards in your briefcase. Send a short email message to colleagues that have the potential of becoming business partners or clients (those who work in your expertise fields and language pairs, or those who own or work for translation companies). Let them know that it was nice meeting them and that you hope you can collaborate in the future. Make sure you are clear about the services you offer and that they may use. What’s important here is that you send them a personalized message and not a general one that you may send others as well.
  • Add them to your social networks: search for potential clients and collaborators who attended the event in social and professional networks such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. When doing so, just make sure that your profile is a professional one or that the posts you make and that they see are related to the services you offer (most social networks allow you to set visibility and privacy permissions).
  • Add them to your chat list: if you use chat software such as Skype, add potential clients you met as contacts. This may increase your chances of being contacted by them for rush projects or for projects for which they don’t have anyone in mind.
  • Include their names in greetings or gift list: if once in a while you take some time to thank your clients or send them a card or a gift (for Christmas or New Year for example), make sure you include potential clients’ names in the recipient list as well. This will let them know that you keep them in mind and help them to keep your name in their mind as well.
  • Invite them to future events you plan to attend: if there are any future events that you are planning to attend and that you believe may be of interest to these potential clients or colleagues, make sure you take a few minutes to invite them and show them that you are willing to see them again. You may invite them via email or social networks as long as your message is short and to the point.

In general, keeping in touch with potential clients is easier than meeting them for the first time. So, if you managed to leave your shyness aside and make an impression during the event, you should be able to stay connected afterwards, increasing your chances of getting collaboration requests and even making new friends. In the end, and as Socrates puts it, be slow to fall into friendship; but when thou art in, continue firm and constant.

How do you keep in touch with potential clients and collaborators?

Share below.


The next –and last– part in this series will provide you with one last tip to get the most our of industry events. Keep in touch!

Summary of the ProZ.com 2014 international conference in Pisa, Italy Reply

It’s been a week since the ProZ.com 2014 international conference in Pisa, Italy, and I still wake up thinking about diversification, machine translation, negotiation, marketing and other translator challenges. Fortunately, I can see from social network comments and attendees’ feedback that I’m not the only one! Without a doubt, Sunday and Saturday sessions, lectures, workshops and social events not only offered those who attended the opportunity to learn, network and have fun, but also left us thinking about the conference main topic: Looking forward: skills, challenges and perspectives.

Twenty presentations, a sightseeing tour around Pisa, a gala dinner, two powwows and the presence of a great number of language professionals made this great conference. Translators and interpreters had the chance to meet colleagues, promote themselves, learn how to get the most our of their profession and have fun.

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So, what now? If you attended the ProZ.com 2014 international conference in Pisa, Italy, you are invited to:

If you did not attend this conference, you can:

And don’t forget to sign-up for the 2015 international conference to be organized by Nigel Saych:

ProZ.com 2015 international conference in Rotterdam, Netherlands »

Or propose your own ProZ.com event.

Special thanks to Daniela Zambrini, an amazing event organizer and a great friend, to Valentina Pardini and Catia Argirò for their outstanding assistance, to speakers for sharing their time and knowledge, to sponsors for their support of the event, to Esther Zambrini for recording great conference moments with her camera, and to attendees for being there to make of this conference a huge success!

Looking forward to seeing you all again soon!

Lucia

Getting the most out of industry events: Part eight 1

This is the eighth post in a series of weekly blog posts with tips to get the most out of translation industry events (click here to see a full list of previous posts). As explained in the first part, tips are grouped into “before the event”, “during the event” and “after the event” for easy reference. Please feel free to post below and share your tip(s)!


After the event

Tip 8: share your feedback

So, the event is over. You are on your way to the airport, the bus station, the parking lot, or you are already home, and you have all these new ideas, and people’s names, and plans. With the conference badge still hanging from your neck, you remember some of the concepts that were discussed during presentations and the great time you had over dinner with colleges. You know your investment paid off. Well, now is the time to let others know what you think of the event, how you feel, what you learned and how much fun you had. Why? For many reasons:

  • Sharing your feedback on presentations will not only be a nice gesture towards those who gave them (i.e. speakers) and help them to know what you think, what you’ve learned and even improve upon their presentation for future events, but also encourage other attendees to do the same. Be it positive or negative feedback, all adds to the speaker’s experience and to attendees’ knowledge.
  • Sharing your general feedback on the event (event organization, timing, meals, etc.) will let the organizer know how their efforts turned out. It takes a lot of time, patience and creativity to organize a great event. If you had a good time and you are going home having learned something new, let the organizer know. Organizers will appreciate your feedback after working for months on an event that, for them, was over before they couldn’t even notice.
  • Sharing photos and videos is also a good way of reinforcing the true sense of community that is fostered during an event, and will also encourage others to do the same. Eventually, anyone can go back to those pictures and videos, see who attended, remember names and decide to attend a future event.

Tweets on ProZ.com 2013 international conference in Porto, Portugal

If you have never organized and event, you should know that there are more people and hours involved than you think. From event organizers to speakers, from sponsors to assistants, from designers to venue personnel, everyone has a lot of responsibilities and works hard so that you can just sit, learn, network and have fun. So if you are satisfied with an event you attended, take a couple of minutes and let all these people know (use the event hashtag on Twitter or Facebook, or just send them an email). All of those involved will appreciate it.

Do you share feedback on events you attend?

Share below.


The next part in this series will suggest tips to keep in touch with attendees via email and social networks. Stay tuned!

Getting the most out of industry events: Part seven 1

This is the seventh post in a series of weekly blog posts with tips to get the most out of translation industry events (click here to see a full list of previous posts). As explained in the first part, tips are grouped into “before the event”, “during the event” and “after the event” for easy reference. Please feel free to post below and share your tip(s)!


During the event

Tip 7: target potential clients and collaborators

While most language professionals attend industry events to learn and have fun, many also understand that investing in attending a conference or a seminar represents a great opportunity to meet potential clients and collaborators, and so increase their client and colleague database. At industry events, there will be other freelance translators and interpreters, but there will also be company representatives, sponsors and professionals who work for companies that may be hiring. So, if you are looking to meet new clients, these are the attendees you need to target. But how can we approach other attendees and find out whether they are freelance translators who, like us, are just there to learn and have fun (and probably meet clients too) or potential clients? Let’s see…

Start by approaching attendees one by one, or in groups, and open conversation. Questions such as “what services do you offer?” or “do you work for end clients or mostly agencies?” may already give you an idea of whether the other attendee is a freelancer like you or a professional working for someone else (a potential client).

Let the other person know the services you offer, the language pairs in which you work and your fields of expertise. Even if the other person is not a company representative, it may be a freelancer who can invite you to collaborate in future projects (or even send you projects they cannot handle). If the other person represents a company, information on services, languages and expertise is also relevant. In both cases, if the other person gets interested in what you have to offer (i.e. they ask questions, they follow-up on what you say, etc.), make sure you don’t leave the conversation without giving them your card.

In the case of sponsors, approach their sponsorship stand and familiarize yourself with their services. Some language service companies prepare application forms for conferences, others just invite you to leave them your contact details.

Finally, it is good practice to do some homework before the event to learn who is attending and prepare a list of potential clients and collaborators in advance. You may even contact them before the event and make arrangements to meet in person. See tips on how to plan your event here.

In the end, what matters is that you make the most out of your conference fee investment. Industry events tend to attract a good number of people and it is possible that you get a job offer from the last person you thought you would. Just make sure you are ready for the opportunity. Keep a small pile of business cards in your pocket, smile and you are all set!

Have you ever met a client or a collaborator in an industry event?

Share below.


Stay tuned! The next part in this series will explain the importance of sharing your feedback once the event is over.

Getting the most out of industry events: Part six Reply

This is the sixth post in a series of weekly blog posts with tips to get the most out of translation industry events (click here to see a full list of previous posts). As explained in the first part, tips are grouped into “before the event”, “during the event” and “after the event” for easy reference. Please feel free to post below and share your tip(s)!


During the event

Tip 6: make an impression

Attending an industry event means meeting a good number of people for the first time. And it’s not just people you are meeting, these are individuals who have the potential of becoming clients or collaborators in the future. So, you will want to make a good first impression and be remembered once the event ends.

But how can we make sure we are ready to make a good first impression on these potential clients and collaborators? Here are some tips:

ProZ.com 2012 regional event in Lyon, France

Dress for the occasion: the first thing people will see when meeting you is you. At first sight, these people won’t know who you are, the experience you have, the services you offer or anything related to your personal or professional background. So, a good starting point for getting people interested in you is to reflect your professionalism with the appropriate outfit. Clothes, jewelry, make-up, etc. are taken into account by those who don’t know us when making an initial judgement. Business casual is probably what you want to wear for a conference, whether you are attending or presenting at one. For men, it may be easier than for women. However, both can be comfortable, fashionable and professional at the same.

Watch your body language: when talking to someone for the fist time, make sure your body language reflects confidence. Make eye contact, keep your hands to your side or in your lap, don’t bite your fingernails or a pen, try to sit or stand up straight, but relaxed (you don’t want to look like a robot either!), and smile. All these will tell the other person a lot about your mood and yourself.

Listen: when approaching someone, do so with genuine interest to know them. Don’t just talk about yourself, but also –and most importantly– listen to what the other person has to say. Ask questions, comment on what your interlocutor says, show interest and, with this, become interesting yourself.

Be yourself: even when the purpose of event networking is professionally-oriented, you don’t need to be promoting yourself and selling your services at all times. Not everyone will want to discuss rates or CAT tools, and some people may even get annoyed at receiving unsolicited resumes. Sometimes the best way to promote your business is to not do it at all and just be yourself. Use your intuition to know who is looking for colleagues to work with, who is looking for service providers or who is simply attending the event to learn more and have fun.

Close on a good note: whether you have nothing else to say or the conversation with your interlocutor dragged too long already, try to end it positively to increase the chances for future conversations. Make a closing remark about one of the topics discussed (“I’ll read that book you recommended then.”) or apologize for having to do something else, but let them know that it was good meeting them and give them your business card. You may also make use of your body language, offer a handshake or grab your purse.

It is said that you will never have a second chance to create a good first impression and industry events are no exception. The first impression someone has of us may be the result of their experience and the environment. However, we can add to these by doing things right the first time.

Do you know any other tips to make a good first impression?

Share below.


The next part in this series will suggest tips to gain new clients and collaborators during an industry event . Stay tuned!