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Poll: Do you prefer to work alone?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff
ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 15:50
SITE STAFF
Jan 5, 2014

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "Do you prefer to work alone?".

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Julian Holmes  Identity Verified
Japan
Local time: 07:50
Member (2011)
Japanese to English
Yes, definitely Jan 5, 2014

This way I have fewer distractions and can get along with work at my own pace -- I am in complete charge of things.

However, you must be able to manage yearlong 'cabin fever.'


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Michael Harris  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:50
Member (2006)
German to English
Yes, again Jan 5, 2014

Julian Holmes wrote:

This way I have fewer distractions and can get along with work at my own pace -- I am in complete charge of things.

However, you must be able to manage yearlong 'cabin fever.'


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tilak raj  Identity Verified
India
Local time: 04:20
Member (2012)
English to Panjabi
+ ...
yes Jan 5, 2014

concentration is real issue for translation. So It is required to sit alone to work.

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Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 15:50
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes, definitely Jan 5, 2014

But it wasn't always that way. When I was a lot younger, I worked on an in-house translation team. I learned a lot from my colleagues and we had fun. And the money was good.

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Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 23:50
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Yes, definitely! Jan 5, 2014

Some months ago I visited a translation agency owned by an ex-colleague and I was shocked to see that all translators worked in an open-plan environment. I do wonder how it is possible to work under those conditions. The truth is I just couldn’t do that! In order for me to work efficiently, I need a calm environment with the minimum amount of noise and interruption possible. Needless to say that I'm "condemned" to work alone!

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Sabrina Bruna  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 00:50
Member (2013)
English to Italian
+ ...
Yes, definitely though... Jan 5, 2014

when my cat was happy to stay at home instead of going away and spend his time at my neighbour's, it was great to work with him sleeping on my lap!

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dianaft  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:50
Member (2013)
German to English
+ ...
Not just for concentration Jan 5, 2014

It's not just a concentration issue. I can block out noises, but I do it completely and then do't react when someone actually does want something, which usually isn't very well received in an office.

But there are other issues, such as not having to make small talk, which I find really wearing; being able to shout at my computer, when it doesn't do what I want it to; having a cigarette the very moment I feel stressed and not having to wander outside for it...

I can easily imagine working in a group of like-minded individuals, but definitely not in a typical office setting.

This was, in fact, the very reason that I steared clear of the world of translation for so long - I simply didn't know that you could do it in your own space, on a freelance basis. I only found that out a couple of years ago.
And the thought of having to come into an office every day and deal with office politics was enough to put me off entirely.


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Texte Style
Local time: 00:50
French to English
I prefer to work with other people. Jan 5, 2014

There are four of us in the office where I work. We have mini brainstorming sessions for slogans and sound each other out when we're not sure of the meaning of the source, and let off steam when clients are unreasonable. This sounds like there's constant chatter, but in fact we barely speak all day because we all need to concentrate. Then we get to have lunch together and of course a drink after work too. Working at home alone would drive me mad!

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Allison Wright  Identity Verified
Portugal
Local time: 23:50
German to English
+ ...
Yes, to a certain extent Jan 5, 2014

I could not answer a plain "yes", because even though the translation itself is performed alone (and I would hate to have anyone else in the room, I see myself as working in conjunction with, or in collaboration with, my client, whether a direct client or agency. In a sense therefore, I am not alone, even if liaison is only at the beginning and the end of the job..

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Thayenga  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:50
Member (2009)
English to German
+ ...
Yes Jan 5, 2014

Michael Harris wrote:

Julian Holmes wrote:

This way I have fewer distractions and can get along with work at my own pace -- I am in complete charge of things.

However, you must be able to manage yearlong 'cabin fever.'


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David Friemann, MA  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 00:50
English to German
my thoughts exactly... Jan 5, 2014

dianaft wrote:

It's not just a concentration issue. I can block out noises, but I do it completely and then do't react when someone actually does want something, which usually isn't very well received in an office.

But there are other issues, such as not having to make small talk, which I find really wearing; being able to shout at my computer, when it doesn't do what I want it to; having a cigarette the very moment I feel stressed and not having to wander outside for it...

I can easily imagine working in a group of like-minded individuals, but definitely not in a typical office setting.

This was, in fact, the very reason that I steared clear of the world of translation for so long - I simply didn't know that you could do it in your own space, on a freelance basis. I only found that out a couple of years ago.
And the thought of having to come into an office every day and deal with office politics was enough to put me off entirely.


except for the cigarettes, of course


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Christine Andersen  Identity Verified
Denmark
Local time: 00:50
Member (2003)
Danish to English
+ ...
It works when everyone else feels the same Jan 5, 2014

Teresa Borges wrote:

Some months ago I visited a translation agency owned by an ex-colleague and I was shocked to see that all translators worked in an open-plan environment. I do wonder how it is possible to work under those conditions. The truth is I just couldn’t do that! In order for me to work efficiently, I need a calm environment with the minimum amount of noise and interruption possible. Needless to say that I'm "condemned" to work alone!


When I worked in-house we had masses of space in the open-plan office, and we all seemed to have the same need for quiet.
We enjoyed our lunch and coffee breaks together and meetings, but otherwise we crept around respecting each other's need to work undisturbed.

If we needed help or advice, we waited till the next break and asked if a colleague had time!

I was sorry to leave, though I would not go back!


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Tina Vonhof  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 16:50
Member (2006)
Dutch to English
+ ...
Alone Jan 5, 2014

I like being alone when I'm actually at work but I also like being part of a team working towards a larger project, where everyone has their own tasks and we exchange information when appropriate.

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neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:50
Spanish to English
+ ...
Yes, to a certain extent Jan 5, 2014

Mostly on my own, but sometimes working with colleagues can be fun and a refreshing change (as good as a rest, so they say). On the other hand if it goes skewiff, it may reinforce the positive side of loner translating. "Hell can be other people".

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