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Poll: What is the most important investment for a translator?
Thread poster: ProZ.com Staff

ProZ.com Staff
Local time: 07:41
SITE STAFF
Apr 2

This forum topic is for the discussion of the poll question "What is the most important investment for a translator?".

This poll was originally submitted by Fernanda Brandao-Galea. View the poll results »



 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 15:41
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Other Apr 2

A combination of all the above, starting with education as a profession cannot be characterized as such without an education, so:

Education+ training + experience
Workspace + office equipment
Memberships
Networking
My own website
And… using the services of a professional proofreader
(...)
Though some of my peers consider investing in CAT tools a must, I haven’t…


[Edited at 2019-04-02 08:52 GMT]


Julio Madrid
Hedwig Spitzer Cáceres
Jean Shearer
Mónica Algazi
Muriel Vasconcellos
 

Marjolein Snippe  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:41
Member (2012)
English to Dutch
+ ...
combination Apr 2

For me, at the moment, a CAT tool is something I would not want to do without, although as Teresa points out, this varies between translators.
I do not have a website and receive most of my work through existing clients. A fair few of those clients originally found me through Proz.com, and another few via the Dutch translators' association NGTV, so I also consider memberships an important investment (also, in addition to getting new clients, they are useful for networking, advocacy, learni
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For me, at the moment, a CAT tool is something I would not want to do without, although as Teresa points out, this varies between translators.
I do not have a website and receive most of my work through existing clients. A fair few of those clients originally found me through Proz.com, and another few via the Dutch translators' association NGTV, so I also consider memberships an important investment (also, in addition to getting new clients, they are useful for networking, advocacy, learning etc. so definitely worthwhile for me).
Education and training are hugely important, with the amount to invest depending on the professional stage of the translator (maintenance costing much less than initial degree courses).
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Julio Madrid
Elena Mordenti
Belén Panno
 

neilmac  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 16:41
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Apr 2

Different strokes for different folks. What works for me might not work for someone else. I suppose education would be the most important thing - although as I had a good upbringing in the UK and have a university degree, I tend to take that for granted.

CAT tools are becoming increasingly important nowadays, although many translators manage to do without them. My own basic requirements would be at least one PC and preferably one laptop as well.

Twenty years ago, I thou
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Different strokes for different folks. What works for me might not work for someone else. I suppose education would be the most important thing - although as I had a good upbringing in the UK and have a university degree, I tend to take that for granted.

CAT tools are becoming increasingly important nowadays, although many translators manage to do without them. My own basic requirements would be at least one PC and preferably one laptop as well.

Twenty years ago, I thought having my own website would be a good idea, but never really got round to setting one up. It's never been an issue.

Networking and memberships can indubitably be useful, especially if you're starting out.
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Natalia Pedrosa
Elena Mordenti
Noni Gilbert
 

Chris S  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Swedish to English
+ ...
Other Apr 2

A computer, no?

Maria Simmen
Julio Madrid
Hedwig Spitzer Cáceres
Michael Harris
Vera Schoen
Jaime Oriard
texjax DDS PhD
 

HWAJIN CHOI
South Korea
Local time: 23:41
Member (Mar 2019)
English to Korean
+ ...


Posted via
ProZ.com Mobile


It did was such an investment, but... Apr 2

So, it seems a lot of people thought it was a big investment that spending money on CAT tools. Well, I agree, but I don't think it is the most important thing.
In my opinion, the most important investment in translation is the experience that people get while living a very normal life.
Investing money isn't the only investment. Sometimes you invest time, space, memories, relationships, and something beyond them to gain such a great experiences.


Julio Madrid
Philip Lees
 

Ricki Farn
Germany
Local time: 16:41
Member (2005)
English to German
Other Apr 2

A combination of the above and getting enough sleep and sunlight (not at the same time). My most salient (although maybe not most expensive) investment is the one in my own well-being.

Julio Madrid
Teresa Borges
Elena Mordenti
Steffen Walter
Philip Lees
Anja Hajek
 

Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 15:41
Member (2004)
English to Italian
Other Apr 2

All of them...

Julio Madrid
Gibril Koroma
 

Fiona Grace Peterson  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 16:41
Member
Italian to English
Other Apr 2

Good coffee.

Julio Madrid
Teresa Borges
Ricki Farn
Mónica Algazi
Mario Freitas
 

Julio Madrid  Identity Verified
Mexico
Local time: 07:41
English to Spanish
+ ...


Posted via
ProZ.com Mobile


A decent computer Apr 2

Today, the most important investment for any translator, in any country, would be a decent and capable computer. Then, invest in getting clients: memberships for online directories. (Assuming you already have the most important investment: education, knowledge and experience).

Yetta J Bogarde
Peter Simon
Teresa Borges
Hedwig Spitzer Cáceres
Mónica Algazi
Noni Gilbert
Muriel Vasconcellos
 

Peter Simon  Identity Verified
Netherlands
Local time: 16:41
Member (2013)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Investment Apr 2

Well, yes, I don't suppose a serious translator would dare start a career without the necessary education so that can be discounted as a necessity - more than 40% of decently developed economies have higher education, which could, in one way or another, assure the holder of a certificate that, all else failing, he/she could use to get into translation.

As a direct investment, I'd call out the missing computer. Most people have some kind of a gadget but only a good computer allows o
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Well, yes, I don't suppose a serious translator would dare start a career without the necessary education so that can be discounted as a necessity - more than 40% of decently developed economies have higher education, which could, in one way or another, assure the holder of a certificate that, all else failing, he/she could use to get into translation.

As a direct investment, I'd call out the missing computer. Most people have some kind of a gadget but only a good computer allows one to really work and that's also the most expensive proviso. The other conditions are not such priorities though a good CAT tool also comes in handy - on a good computer/laptop again.
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Vera Schoen
 

Gitte Hovedskov
Denmark
Local time: 16:41
Member (Mar 2019)
English to Danish
+ ...
Long-term immersion in life in other cultures Apr 2

Without spending time getting to know other cultures first-hand, it's all just theory.

Michele Fauble
Ricki Farn
Jennifer Forbes
Muriel Vasconcellos
 

Gibril Koroma  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 10:41
French to English
+ ...


Posted via
ProZ.com Mobile


Membership Apr 3

Memberships, CAT tools and the rest.

 

Muriel Vasconcellos  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 07:41
Member (2003)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Other Apr 3

I would say:
- A good computer. a reliable backup system, a laptop, and possibly additional monitors.
- Immersion experiences in one's source languages. If one is not living in a country where the translator's target language is spoken, then regular visits, TV, and every other possible opportunity to stay abreast with the language. I lived in Mexico for 2 years, speaking my source languages on the street and at home, and I definitely found myself out of date in my native language whe
... See more
I would say:
- A good computer. a reliable backup system, a laptop, and possibly additional monitors.
- Immersion experiences in one's source languages. If one is not living in a country where the translator's target language is spoken, then regular visits, TV, and every other possible opportunity to stay abreast with the language. I lived in Mexico for 2 years, speaking my source languages on the street and at home, and I definitely found myself out of date in my native language when I returned to the U.S.
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Mario Freitas  Identity Verified
Brazil
Local time: 11:41
Member (2014)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
CAT + ProZ + Equipment Apr 3

There are three vital investments for us: A CAT tool, the ProZ signature and good-quality equipment/accessories. These three are what you need to succeed.
The others, experience tells you, are money straight into the garbage can.
The others:
1. Courses are overly and provenly inefficient for their purposes. There is nothing you will possibly learn in a course, paying for it, that you will not learn better by yourself at home and with experience. Plus, you'll always find out 90
... See more
There are three vital investments for us: A CAT tool, the ProZ signature and good-quality equipment/accessories. These three are what you need to succeed.
The others, experience tells you, are money straight into the garbage can.
The others:
1. Courses are overly and provenly inefficient for their purposes. There is nothing you will possibly learn in a course, paying for it, that you will not learn better by yourself at home and with experience. Plus, you'll always find out 90% of what they taught in the course are not quite as explained and represent 10% of what you need in your profession.
2. Certificates are required or considered by such an infimous number of clients, it really does not make any difference. It won't hurt, but you'll never get ROI.
3. Memberships: I tried several. The only one that offsets is ProZ. Memberships in associations/unions/etc. are just like the certificates: you'll never get the ROI, not even close.
4. Website: provenly useless in our profession. Many people have them as an "extra" or an advertising thing, but with very little positive outcome.
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