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Poll: Do you ask your clients for an opinion on your translation services?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 18:35
SITE STAFF
Oct 20, 2012

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you ask your clients for an opinion on your translation services?".

This poll was originally submitted by Maciej Burak. View the poll results »



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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 02:35
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
No! Oct 20, 2012

The fact that they keep on sending work is quite enough for me, but I have from time to time received congratulations on a job well done and I display those on my site.

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Aditya Ikhsan Prasiddha  Identity Verified
Indonesia
Local time: 09:35
Member (2012)
English to Indonesian
no Oct 20, 2012

because it just seems insecure and who would want an insecure translator?

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Mario Chavez  Identity Verified
Local time: 21:35
English to Spanish
+ ...
There's a thought Oct 20, 2012

I remember going into a restaurant once. There was a small sign that read "If you are happy with our service, tell others. If you are unhappy with it, tell us."

It all depends on how we ask for an opinion. Be specific, but don't fish for critique or compliments either.


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Victoria Britten  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:35
Member (2012)
French to English
+ ...
Not as such... Oct 20, 2012

... but I try to leave the option open for a regular client to comment every so often, by asking for example if the way we work together still suits them. I find that this can allow minor issues to be aired before they become real problems. Of course, if you're asking them for a reference you have to be more direct...

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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:35
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
No, never Oct 20, 2012

Simply because my long-term clients tell me what they think about my services without the need to ask for their opinion. And... I am more than happy with their ocmments.

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James A. Walsh
Spain
Local time: 03:35
Member
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes, sometimes Oct 20, 2012

Via the Willingness to Work Again (WWA) option here on ProZ. Works for me! And I do it the other way round on this site too for clients/agencies via the Likelihood of Working Again (LWA) option.

[Edited at 2012-10-20 12:27 GMT]


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Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 19:35
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
I don' ask but Oct 20, 2012

I don't for their opinion but when I send in my translation, I always say "please let me know if you have any questions or comments." (i.e., about this particular translation). It is very nice, though, when they do pass on positive comments from the client or give a WWA rating without being asked and, of course, when they keep sending more work, that implies a positive opinion as well.

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Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 11:35
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
No news is good news Oct 20, 2012

Basic Golden Rules of Translation

If you never hear anything about work you've delivered, then don't worry -- it's OK.
If a customer gives you feedback, it's invariably not positive. Few customers will ever tell you it was a great translation. Unfortunate but true!

So, basically, there is no need to ask for an opinion. Believe me, a customer will give you their opinion about your work if they have one.

So, no news is good news. Enjoy it while you can.

Small edit

[Edited at 2012-10-21 02:50 GMT]


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Nikki Graham  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 02:35
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
Ditto Julian Oct 20, 2012

Julian Holmes wrote:

Basic Golden Rules of Translation

If you never hear anything about work you've delivered, then don't worry -- it's OK.
If a customer gives you feedback, it's invariably not positive. Few customers will ever tell you it was a great translation. Unfortunate but true!

So, basically, there is no need to ask for an opinion. Believe me, a customer will give you their opinion about your work if they have one.

So, no news is good news. Enjoy it while you can.

Small edit

[Edited at 2012-10-20 16:03 GMT]


Ah, Julian. I was just going to say the exact same thing: no news is good news


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Robert Forstag  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 21:35
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
In general, "no news is good news," but... Oct 20, 2012

...on the other hand, one shouldn't completely rely on this axiom, for doing so could result in the same pitfall that awaits a football team taking the attitude that it needn't worry as long as it can soundly defeat weak competition.

Then the day comes when it faces more formidable rivals....

In other words, some agencies and end clients are simply uncritical about translations they contract, either because they don't know the source and/or target languages involved, or because they in turn take the attitude that "no news is good news" and whoever may notice some deficiency in a translation at some point down the line simply doesn't bother to make mention of it.

The problem with this phenomenon is that it can lead one into the alarmingly false sense of security that comes with a slackening of standards, followed at some point by a vicious bite in the ass should the day come when a critical eye is cast on a translation that does not bear close scrutiny.

So if you know you have weaknesses in particular areas, and you plan to continue to work in those areas, you had best remedy them....

[Edited at 2012-10-20 17:36 GMT]


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Marlene Blanshay  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 21:35
Member (2009)
French to English
+ ...
silence= assent Oct 20, 2012

I always send in my documents and ask the clients to let me know regarding any possible questions. If i hear nothing, then I take it there was no problem. If someone volunteers praise or compliments, then even better. I just received some high praise for a series of editing jobs, which really did me some good: it's a very big name client and they're 'picky'. But the PM told me they were very happy with the work.

I think most of us just live by the 'rule of silence', but it's always good when you get a compliment or positive evaluation. And I welcome any constructive criticism of course. There are some clients who have gone by the wayside, but I think for most of them, it's because of the amount of work in my language pair, not because I did low quality work.


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Michael Harris  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:35
Member (2006)
German to English
Bingo!! Oct 20, 2012

Teresa Borges wrote:

The fact that they keep on sending work is quite enough for me, but I have from time to time received congratulations on a job well done and I display those on my site.


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janen
Local time: 15:35
Spanish to English
+ ...
No, but curious Oct 20, 2012

I never ask, but some clients do give me positive feedback. Of course I appreciate that, but what I sometimes wonder, and they never mention, is whether they have noticed an improvement over the years.

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 18:35
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Almost never Oct 20, 2012

In the past, when some clients have asked me for references and I complied, which amounted to feedback. I don't do that anymore. I refer them to my website. So I'm fully in agreement with Teresa:

Teresa Borges wrote:
The fact that they keep on sending work is quite enough for me, but I have from time to time received congratulations on a job well done and I display those on my site.


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