What makes a good translator

What makes a good translator

Working with translators on a daily basis is the life line for our company. Without the hard work and dedication of our team of translators we would have no service to offer. So we decided to make this blog about them, we asked them what makes a good translator and here are just three translators responses to this questions;

From a Greek Translator:

The first quality that a good translator must have is knowledge of the subject he is translating.

Although in translation schools you learn to translate all kind of documents I strongly believe that the translator must have knowledge on the subject he is translating. You cannot expect a translator to have knowledge on all subjects.

The second quality he must have is professionalism. A translator must respect his customer, who normally is an agency, providing quality; also it must meet the pro-agreed delivery dates. This will enable the agency to respect in its turn its own customer who actually is the “paying” customer.

I believe those two qualities are the main ones. In addition he must be as a person of good character and cooperate closely with the agency. After all it’s not companies who are successful… it’s the people working within them.

From a Japanese Translator:

Prompt responses to all communications, attention to detail, good understanding and common sense associated with experiences and good perspective for the client and the readers; meaning, if the content of the source is terribly written or vague, ask questions or make suggestions to clarify. Do not leave to imagination or pass the buck of responsibility. This will build up trusting relationship and credibility.

Honesty when it comes to deadlines, translators should hold their human rights higher than demand. Let them wait for good product! As for translation itself, the translation should be NOT be word-by-word. If it is from English to Japanese, the final product Japanese should be a well acceptable clean Japanese, and vice versa.

 From an Afrikaans Translator:

A good translator has to have an excellent knowledge of the source language as well as the end language.  A good translator is an individual who will stop at nothing to find the correct translation of a specific word.  A good translator also has to keep in mind who the audience of the text is to maintain the appropriate register throughout the translation.

Another characteristic of a good translator is excellent organisational skills, because there are always deadlines looming. A good internet connection is a must, because most companies make use of emails for communication and for the exchange of texts. The internet, as mentioned above, is also an excellent reference tool. An up-to-date version of Microsoft Word is crucial. Dictionaries are also vital work tools. A good translator will update his/her tools regularly to keep delivering excellent service. This includes acquiring newer versions of dictionaries every few years.

A good translator is also someone who is constantly bettering his/her skills (which are actually a part of their work tools).  Last, but not least, a love of language is an almost logical requirement to become a good translator, because if you love what you do, there are no barriers to the heights you may reach in any field.

So as you can read even though these three translators are from very different parts of the world the message is all the same, as a translator you need to know your language before you put words to any job!

So thank you Team for being the best translator that you can be for our clients!!

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