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Do you solicit client comment about your translation?
Thread poster: Alan Wang

Alan Wang  Identity Verified
China
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Sep 27, 2011

国内客户是否主动评论你的译文如何好?我的印象是不。

国外翻译外包者似乎有这个倾向。有一次某个国外联系人说我的试译文得到最高分,口气里似乎发现了一个伟大人才(呵呵),并主动提出根据我的简历给我填他们需要的信息表格,大概怕我嫌麻烦。但是后来一年多完全没音信。最近因为一个机会,我想起给她发信,发现邮箱已经不通了。看来她的公司倒了。

我发现国内客户都没有这个倾向。尽管他们可能不断发来稿件,或跟你合作几年时间,都不发什么评语。最近做了一个单子,2个星期后想试一试,问一下这个国内客户(翻译公司)的反映如何。结果她回答: 客户没反映,应该还不错。

So, it's my thinking that if a Chinese client has nothing to say about your translation, and he or she keeps sending you jobs, that means you are at least a good translator if not a great translator.
Foreigners usually don't understand this, but that does not mean they aren't happily and hopelessly kept in the dark as to why we think what we think and we do what we do.

There is really something called "Chinese characteristics", isn't there?




[Edited at 2011-09-27 13:55 GMT]


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stonejohn  Identity Verified
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稍微正规一点的公司有这个流程 Sep 27, 2011

国内稍微正规一点的公司有这个流程,即把校对过的稿件返回给译员确认(接受或拒绝修改)。

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Alan Wang  Identity Verified
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not exactly the same thing Sep 27, 2011

stonejohn wrote:

国内稍微正规一点的公司有这个流程,即把校对过的稿件返回给译员确认(接受或拒绝修改)。



You have done a splendid job.
Your translation is perfect. or
Your are the greatest translator in the history of the planet!

That's what I mean by client comments.


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James_xia  Identity Verified
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国内外有别 Sep 29, 2011

如Alan所说,国外公司不象国内翻译公司,无论满意与否,一般不对翻译文件主动作评价。这大概与语言文化差异有一定关系。许多公司的PM一般都不直接参与译文审校(或出于不熟悉target language的缘故),习惯于采取翻译和校对分别对待的方式。在这样的操作模式下,他们的目标是获得客户的最后认同,而非着意去评判译者的翻译水平。

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Alan Wang  Identity Verified
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do you solicit client comments to promote your business? Sep 30, 2011

James_xia wrote:

如Alan所说,国外公司不象国内翻译公司,无论满意与否,一般不对翻译文件主动作评价。这大概与语言文化差异有一定关系。许多公司的PM一般都不直接参与译文审校(或出于不熟悉target language的缘故),习惯于采取翻译和校对分别对待的方式。在这样的操作模式下,他们的目标是获得客户的最后认同,而非着意去评判译者的翻译水平。


James, 你大概是忙得不可开交吧,呵呵,并未留心我说的啥。我的意思是国外客户好像是有这个倾向的,就是如果你做的好,就实事求是或略带夸张地对你的译文表示赞许。当然如果他们不满意你的工作,那你就没机会了,他们最多会说你继续努力;即使有人说些难听点的话,在此也毫不相干,因为此处我们所关心的是顾客对我们译文的赞许和吹捧。没人会傻到在推介业务时提及他的客户说他的作品是crap。

而国内公司并不这样,你做的好,他们只是一声不吭地不断发来稿件。几乎从不主动说你的译文如何好(只有一次某国内公司提及他们的客户对我的译文表示满意)这里似乎和那种经典的老外对中国人的看法比较一致,即:中国人好像不太善于表达。或者说的难听一点,不够自信,说的好听点是表达方式不同。

不过我接触的国外客户太少了,该数目和此处很多人比几乎可以忽略。所以可能这个看法不太准确。不过每一个我接触的国外的客户或准客户,都曾主动表示过。即便在国外的中国人,你如问及,他们也会有所表示。

但是有一个事实似乎可以验证我的观点:就我所知,国内的翻译,为推介业务的需要所引用的客户赞美之言似乎都来自国外客户或外国人,几乎没有本地中国人客户(无论是否直接客户)。人微言轻?中国翻译市场已经够大了,这个现象可以改变。


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Zhoudan  Identity Verified
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这种评价有什么用 Sep 30, 2011

给你业务,拿到钱是硬道理。至于夸不夸译文,一毛钱用处也没有。

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stonejohn  Identity Verified
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:-) Sep 30, 2011

Zhoudan wrote:

给你业务,拿到钱是硬道理。至于夸不夸译文,一毛钱用处也没有。


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Alan Wang  Identity Verified
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不是接鬼吗 Sep 30, 2011

俗话说:饱汉不知饿汉饥。:???:


Zhoudan wrote:

给你业务,拿到钱是硬道理。至于夸不夸译文,一毛钱用处也没有。


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ysun  Identity Verified
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What does it mean? Sep 30, 2011

Alan Wang wrote:

So, it's my thinking that if a Chinese client has nothing to say about your translation, and he or she keeps sending you jobs, that means you are at least a good translator if not a great translator.

If your client keeps sending you jobs, it usually means your translation price and translation quality are acceptable to your client.

It doesn’t necessarily mean your translation price is satisfactory to you.

It doesn’t necessarily mean your translation quality is satisfactory to your client.

It doesn’t necessarily mean you are a good translator.

You are not a good translator unless you are satisfied with your translation price and your client is satisfied with your translation quality.


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Alan Wang  Identity Verified
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呵呵 Sep 30, 2011

还是老孙说的好,可是仔细一推敲,也似乎是啥都没说。:grin:

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ysun  Identity Verified
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还是 Zhoudan 说得好 Sep 30, 2011

Alan Wang wrote:

还是老孙说的好,可是仔细一推敲,也似乎是啥都没说。:grin:

那你就当我啥都没说吧!如果你对你的现状感到很满意,而不只是可接受,那我也为你高兴。还是 Zhoudan 说得好,客户给你业务,你拿到钱才是硬道理,尤其是要拿到对得起自己劳动的钱才是硬道理。讨来的赞扬根本不值钱。


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Alan Wang  Identity Verified
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Are we to understand ... Oct 1, 2011

Western thinking and practices: references and recommendations are good for your business, you need to collect them like a demented beaver.

Chinese: they are not worth a dime.


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Rita Pang  Identity Verified
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How is client feedback useless? Oct 6, 2011

Kindly please elaborate- I am under the impression that some comments above seem to think that client feedback is essentially, useless, since it's not going to directly generate some moolah for you.

I think this is where the cultural thing comes into play. For one, I recently (heck, today) got offered a project because someone somewhere has read a client feedback about my work and happened to be connected to that end client in particular on some social platform, and that person recommended my services.

Platforms like LinkedIn THRIVE on feedback. Now those feedback come in the form of "testimonials" - however I can also attest that such feedback has brought me invaluable networking opportunities and in the occasional case has brought about a real job opportunity. My client likes me and gives me feedback - I get more dough- that makes me happy I'd say.

Going back to the question of whether one solicitis client comment or not- I for one do. I am finally getting myself together to build a website and as "fluff" as one may call it, client feedback are nice fluff to have on a website that directly advertises and sells your work.

I am not too sure about the west vs. east client feedback thing since I have only worked with one agency from PRC so far...the rest if I have built a good rapport with them I tend to ask for feedback. It helps to know where you can improve or where your strengths are.

I agree with ysun however- not getting feedback doesn't necessarily mean they are satisfied....however they will send you work if your rates/quality still meets their requirements. I would say get feedback if you really have a need for it (portfolio building; work improvement needs etc)...


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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Polite society Oct 6, 2011

I'd like to think valuable feedback often come spontaneously, like customer's reviews at Amazon.com.

When you have to ask for it, people typically feel obligated to say something nice. That's probably human nature, and probably applies to both the East and the West.

But I think it's true, people in North America tend to offer praise more readily than to criticize.


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wherestip  Identity Verified
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An individual thing Oct 6, 2011

wherestip wrote:

When you have to ask for it, people typically feel obligated to say something nice. That's probably human nature, and probably applies to both the East and the West.



That reminds me of the Employee Opinion Surveys we used to have at IBM. Although the surveys were always anonymous, I would always give my Management very good feedback.

In that sense, I guess it also highly depends on one's own philosophy in life on how to treat others.


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