Know Your Worth Gets Ready to Hit New York

It seems that the Know Your Worth community is having its busiest season yet, as following the success of our Know Your Worth marathon, and that of the first ever seminar we held in the USA, we are delighted to announce our return to America, and that registration is now open for our first ever New York Edition.

The seminar will take place on 30 June – 1 July 2018, and we would be very happy to see you there.

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If you are an interpreter who wishes to improve your relationships with clients and prospects, gain more respect, and negotiate higher fees, then this two-day event is exactly what you need!

You will receive two days of tuition, covering essential skills for any interpreter, costing less than one day’s interpreting fee.

You will be encouraged to take a step back from your own position, and envision the entire client relationship from new perspectives.

What is important to explore?

We will examine the mindset underlying the marketing and negotiating tasks that you carry out every day, so you may acquire invaluable tools that will have an immediate effect on your bottom line.

We will address questions such as:

What can you do to increase your chances of getting the job once you have targeted the client?

What should you avoid saying, or else the client may never hire you – or anyone else?

What phrase should always end your conversations with any client?

How do you increase your chances of earning what you are worth?

We will discuss concepts such as branding, selling, client relationships, pricing, negotiating tricks, and “coopetition,” all illustrated with real-life examples.

Julia draws on parallels with other – often surprisingly similar – professions, and what lessons we may learn from them. She focuses on the upstream work and preparation that must be done before the interpreter advertises his/her services, or negotiates any contracts.

To register, please use the link below, and don’t hesitate to get in touch should you have any questions.

Register here!

Online registration photo_BW

If you would like to hold a seminar in your area, please contact us via this website, or by contacting the seminar organizer Tatiana Kaplun at kaplun.tatiana@gmail.com.

Please stay tuned for more updates, and don’t hesitate to get in touch should you have any questions.

You can also check our Facebook page for regular updates.

The Business of Interpreting: FAQ 8 – What is the most sustainable interpreting market?

Things have been going well, you have lots of work with a great client, you are earning lots of money – and then suddenly bam! Something happens… and now you are making almost nothing. Your loyal client is no longer hiring you more than once in a blue moon. What can you do?

In actual fact, the question should be “what could I have done to prevent it?” Putting all your eggs in one basket is never a good career move – that’s why there are sayings and fables about it. So let’s take a look at clients and how we can make our situation more sustainable.

The myth of the ideal client

Most of us would think that finding that one client who can hire us every day of the year for decent fees and conditions is a godsend. How fantastic, we don’t have to take the time to market, research new jobs, figure out how to work for a new client, or anything else! We are practically employees, but still able to take our vacations when we want to.

Most often, this type of client is the hiring agent in a government interpretation service, an international organization or an agency. You like the work and don’t have to worry. Your contact knows you and your work, likes you and the ease of dealing with you, and trusts you. For them, you are a consistent element, so why would they bother trying to find another?

This is all well and good, but have you considered how fragile this situation is? What happens if your longtime contact falls ill, or retires, or changes jobs? Have you been nurturing an authentic relationship with them so you know ahead of time that they are moving, so you can make plans? Have you been educating this person for a long time, and can you ask them to pass on the fruits of that education to their replacement or to include them in a standard operating procedures file?

Or even more out of your control, what if you’ve been working for an international organization, and your main language combination is dependent on the political or economic situation in the world? In other words, the major country that speaks your language does something the international organization considers to be beyond the pale, and suddenly they no longer hire anyone with your languages?

Or have you thought about subprime loan risks that spread throughout the global economy? Governments the world over cut their budgets, so many international organizations are now just trying to keep their heads above water and there is much less work for interpreters.

These are all-too-familiar situations that can happen to any of us at any time, and all have happened to some of us. We can cross our fingers and hope that things will pick up again in the near future –though this isn’t very helpful because while the economic situation has only just started moving, it looks to be sinking again; the political situation looks frozen. And how long will this new hiring officer who actively doesn’t want to hire us stay in the job?

Or is there a more sustainable way of finding regular work?

Alternatives

Somewhat counter-intuitively, direct clients on the private market look to be the most sustainable way of working as a freelance interpreter today. Such clients are easier to get to know, and have multiple means of entry – you may get a toehold in the export department, and then get called to work with the marketing and sales departments. Once the company has a long term relationship abroad, you might get brought in to help manage their customer relations. And any time anyone makes a trip to visit that market, you have another job.

If you think about it, even if governments aren’t talking to one another, individuals still do. There will always be some sort of business relationship that people need to maintain. When deals go wrong, there will be international arbitration. And there are always some sort of civil society efforts that need interpreters. It may not be what you would strictly call conference interpreting, but these are fields that many of us have worked in.

If you have a strong base of private clients, even if they are concentrated in a particular niche, you don’t have to worry as much if one of them disappears. Even if they are in the same niche, they maybe at different stages in developing their foreign markets. You don’t have to worry when the hiring agent at one of them changes, that the economic situation in one company will be reflected in exactly the same way in all of them, or that a suddenly different political situation will hit each of them identically.

Moreover, if you have been educating all your points of contact to work with you as a full member of the team, and if you have been maintaining an authentic relationship with them, then when they move on, it may be a great opportunity for you! They may leave instructions for their successors, who will then understand that the company already knows, likes and trusts you; you’ll have less marketing to do to keep them as a client. Plus, you will have the added value of knowing that a second company doesn’t need the same level of education, because your former contact point is now preaching your cause in the new company.

So if sustainability is the watchword, and market diversification is the best way of remaining sustainable, then put more of your eggs in the direct client basket!

Originally published on the blog of the International Association of Conference Interpreters (https://aiic.org/site/world/newsEvents/blog)

2018. A New Year and a New Paris Edition

Following the success of our three Russian editions, we decided it was time to bring the Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating Interpreters seminar back to Paris, and that’s where our most recent edition took place, on 20 – 21 January 2018.

It was the first seminar we held after the beginning of the New Year, and we were naturally very excited to meet our new participants, and explore our new location. It was also in many ways it was a very special edition for us, as it symbolised our return to Paris after an almost two-year-long break.

It was also very special in that it brought together the most multinational group of participants we’ve had on the course yet, with colleagues hailing from Belgium, England, France, Russia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, and the United States, all working in different language combinations. We’ve also had colleagues with some rare (for the European market) languages join the team, which meant that we had an even greater spectrum of case studies and examples to look at.

The seminar was held in a our now well established two-day format, which allowed for a detailed discussion of the seminar’s two main subjects: marketing, and negotiating. Once again, we were able to dedicate an entire day to an in-depth study of each of the main topics, as well as cover such questions as branding, positioning, pricing, pitching, and client relations, and to discuss the many challenges that we, as freelance interpreters – and freelance professionals – must face on a daily basis.

The KYW training is the fastest path to success for you interpreters out there dreaming of landing THE best clients and THE best deals ever! special thanks to Julia Poger!

Cyril Belange

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We like to see our participants brainstorm some of the more challenging cases together, in small or larger groups, as this way they are often able to discover new and exciting solutions to different marketing and negotiating problems. We also urge them to share cases from their own experience, as often this prove to be even more interesting to solve than any usual textbook examples.

We would like to thank all of this edition’s participant for taking such an active part in the discussion, and for being so generous with sharing their own cases and experience. This made the discussion even more relevant to the present-day situation on the market, and allowed us to cover an even broader spectrum of problems – and problem-solving techniques.

Here’s what one of the participants had to say about it:

Attending the seminar was very important to me not only to learn the art of negotiation and how to deal with new prospective clients, but more importantly to learn and understand from YOU and the other attendees what is the nature of the European job market for interpreters, I wanted to know if I have a chance in entering it.
Coming to the seminar was one of the best things I attended in my professional life.

Duna Qalyoubi

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We also talked about the mindset necessary for successful marketing, and covered some general principles (as well as a number of highly practical aspects) of pricing and negotiating, all necessary steps in building a more sustainable and much more successful interpreting business. We were also able to devote some time to looking into how the interpreting profession is perceived from the outside, all in order to better understand our potential and existing clients.

Paris

Traditionally, one of the core features of the seminar is the atmosphere we try to create to encourage our participants to take an active part in the discussion, sharing their personal experience, and exchanging ideas on how best to implement the new tools and techniques in their work. Which is why we would like to take this opportunity to thank the wonderful team at Espaces Réunion for helping us create a unique and memorable atmosphere for the seminar, and for making sure that our participants had a wonderful time and nothing to worry about, except getting to the seminar, and getting the most out of it.

We could not have wished for a better place to hold out seminar, and the two days we spent there proved to be not only incredibly useful, but also great fun.

Which, we firmly believe, is the best way to learn.

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This has truly been the best start of the new year we could have possibly asked for, and we are grateful to all those who took part, and helped us make it possible.

We now have a busy couple of months ahead of us, with Know Your Worth editions taking place in Washington, D.C., as well as in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.

 

 

 

If you would like to hold a seminar in your area, please contact us via this website, or by contacting the seminar organizer Tatiana Kaplun at kaplun.tatiana@gmail.com.

The Business of Interpreting: FAQ 7 – What is the rule of 7?

It’s funny how knowledge in one sphere of our lives is not always transferred to others. I know interpreters who own apartments to rent. They would never allow anyone to live in one of them without a written agreement, but would never think of putting anything on paper when hiring other interpreters.

In previous FAQs, I’ve spoken about relationships but haven’t really defined them. We all know how to make friends and have done since we were children. But for some reason, once we grow up and are no longer carefree students, we tend to forget how to enter into a mutually beneficial, authentic interaction with another person.

So let’s take a quick look at working relationships with clients who are not our colleagues.

The rule of seven

First of all, a very brief history of how sales used to work before we entered the brave new world of one-to-one marketing. Over the decades during which sales became a specialty, there were rules that salespeople sussed out on the job and that have since been validated through practice and research. One of the most important is the rule of seven: It takes an average of seven contacts to make a sale.

This is why cold callers don’t get far. It’s why sales people who call you in the middle of dinner get hung up on. It’s why you never hear back from people you sent your CV to.

Before one-to-one, or relationship, marketing became the norm, that meant literally contacting a possible client seven times before you would capture a sale. In the good old days of Wild West marketing for interpreting contracts, that meant:

  1. Call to find out who should get your CV.
  2. Send your CV.
  3. Call to confirm they received your CV.
  4. Wait a few weeks and send a card updating some of the information on your CV – you have anew skill, you offer new hours, whatever.
  5. Send a Christmas card to the person.
  6. Send a new CV reflecting an update to your skills.
  7. Call to say hello.

By this time, the prospective client would be so sick of you that they would give you an assignment just to get you off the phone. Or else you would contact them just as something you could do came across their desk; it was pure coincidence that they could hire anyone so quickly.

None of it was really building a relationship, but it certainly made sure your name was familiar. All the client knew was that you were familiar and persistent, and perhaps pushy. And frankly, as politicians all over the world know, even bad publicity is publicity.

In Europe, where Wild West marketing would get you shot down in flames in many markets, you still have to get through an average of seven contacts, it simply takes much longer. The three years it took me in the US to get to the point where I no longer had to market myself to have as much work as I wanted, can take at least 5 years in Europe, assuming you’re steady in your efforts.

The advent of relationship marketing

Today, “relationship marketing” rules. The idea is the same in that we still have to contact prospects several times before they become clients. But other things have changed making our job harder –such as having only nine seconds to make a good first impression instead of at least a minute or two. Some – like relationship marketing – make our lives more complicated, but a lot more fun.

One thing that I love about interpreting is getting to know people, and helping them to communicate their ideas to others. The better I know them, the better I communicate their ideas. Getting to know them is the fun part – and it is far from the traditions of waiting my telephone to ring, for someone to call and say they have an assignment for me, or just sending out my CV to everyone I know.

The key to relationship marketing is having an authentic connection. You don’t (usually) go on a first date with someone and immediately start thinking of baby names; why would you want to meet people only so they can hire you? When I meet anyone who could be a prospective client, I don’t think about that future job they could hire me for. I think about what they do, ask them questions to find out their interests, and talk about myself as little as possible. If an idea sparks during our conversation, I share it.

After I return to the office, I note the person’s contact details, along with anything I can remember that stood out from our conversation – especially the sparks. If they are proud of their son’s Little League win, I note that. If I promised them a book recommendation, I make sure to send it the next day with a message saying how great it was to meet them. If I run across an article that I am sure will interest them, I send it along. If we live in the same city, I may ask if they want to go out for a coffee or lunch sometime, and not necessarily to talk about work.

Prospective clients are people too, and will be turned off by a hard sell. The idea is to keep the relationship going. Then, when the company finally does have that event, they know whom to call. And you end up consulting for them, knowing more about what the goals for the meeting are, helping to organize it, and adding a new paying client.

Of course, the relationship is not based on that at all, so whether or not you get work,you still keep in touch. And even in markets where much of interpreters’ work comes from agencies, there is no reason not to call the person who hires you to ask them out for a drink. Agencies are not always our enemies, and if you are happy working for one, that means that you should have more than simply a sales contact with someone on the staff.

“Oh, but…,” I hear a lot from interpreters. “It just isn’t done.” Or “What will people think?” I am not advocating trying to make agency representatives or prospective clients into your best friends. I am not even advocating turning them into friends in the strict sense of the word. It is a very rare client who becomes someone you want to invite to your house, meet your family, or accept an invitation from to stay at their place.

But having a drink to talk about things other than assignments, being a“business friend”, can only be a good thing. It paves the way for more sensitive conversations later, such as, “You do know I have this other language combination as well?” Or “It would be better to organize this part of the meeting in a different way.” Or “It’s about time we had that conversation about raising my rates.”

Remember the earlier FAQ about your ideal client? Having an authentic relationship with an ideal prospective client should be easy. And the best part of this type of marketing is that you aren’t poaching on another interpreter’s territory, and you won’t be able to be poached from as you have a real connection. And when your contact changes jobs, as they will, you now have a good contact with a company that has never heard of you before – and a referral from your contact for the new person at their old desk.

So it still takes an average of seven contacts to make a sale, but those contacts are more authentic, more fulfilling, and a lot more fun.

Originally published on the blog for the International Association of Conference Interpreters (https://aiic.org/site/world/newsEvents/blog)

A busy year ahead

It seems that we here at the Know Your Worth community have a very exciting year ahead, with not one, but two new editions coming up in winter alone! First, the Paris edition on 20-21 January, and then, less than a month later, one in Washington, DC on 17-18 February.

For the first time, AIIC USA will bring Julia Poger’s Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating for Interpreters to the USA, and we hope you are as excited as we are.

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If you are an interpreter who wishes to improve your relationships with clients and prospects, gain more respect, and negotiate higher fees, then this two-day event is exactly what you need!

You will receive two days of tuition, covering essential skills for any interpreter, costing less than one day’s interpreting fee.

You will be encouraged to take a step back from your own position, and envision the entire client relationship from new perspectives.

What is important to explore?

We will examine the mindset underlying the marketing and negotiating tasks that you carry out every day, so you may acquire invaluable tools that will have an immediate effect on your bottom line.

We will address questions such as:

What can you do to increase your chances of getting the job once you have targeted the client?

What should you avoid saying, or else the client may never hire you – or anyone else?

What phrase should always end your conversations with any client?

How do you increase your chances of earning what you are worth?

We will discuss concepts such as branding, selling, client relationships, pricing, negotiating tricks, and “coopetition,” all illustrated with real-life examples.

Julia draws on parallels with other – often surprisingly similar – professions, and what lessons we may learn from them. She focuses on the upstream work and preparation that must be done before the interpreter advertises his/her services, or negotiates any contracts.

To register, please use the link below, and don’t hesitate to get in touch should you have any questions.

Register for our seminar in Washington, DC.

Online registration photo_BW

If you would like to hold a seminar in your area, please contact us via this website, or by contacting the seminar organizer Tatiana Kaplun at kaplun.tatiana@gmail.com.

Please stay tuned for more updates, and don’t hesitate to get in touch should you have any questions.

You can also check our Facebook page for regular updates.

Next stop: Paris!

It’s been exactly one month since the last Moscow Edition of the Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating for Interpreters, and we thought this would be a good moment to share some truly exciting news with you, as we are finally ready to announce the dates of the next Know Your Worth edition.

So, we are very happy to announce that the next edition of the Know Your Worth seminar for interpreters will take place in Paris on 20-21 January 2018.

Paris

For those of you new to the community, Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating for Interpreters is a two-day seminar aimed at any interpreter who wishes to improve relationships with clients and prospects, gain more respect, and negotiate higher fees.

The seminar is taught by Julia Poger (AIIC). The seminar language is English.

By examining the mindset underlying the marketing and negotiating tasks that interpreters carry out every day, participants will obtain invaluable tools for marketing their services and negotiating contracts that they may put into practice immediately, whichever market they target.

Various question will be addressed, such as:

– What can you do to increase your chances of getting the job once you have targeted the client?

– What should you avoid saying, or else the client may never hire you – or anyone else?

– What phrase should always end your conversations with any client?

– How do you increase your chances of earning what you are worth?

The trainer will work with you on your examples, as well as case studies from her own experience, showing how these techniques are replicable across markets.

Concepts such as branding, selling, client relationships, pricing, negotiating tips, and “coopetition” will also be discussed, all illustrated with real-life examples.

Julia draws on parallels with other – often surprisingly similar – professions, and what lessons we could learn from them. She focuses on the upstream work that must be done by the interpreter before advertising his/her services, as well as on the preparation involved before beginning the selling or negotiating process.

Since there is always new material to study, and you know how much we love to read about marketing, there will be quite a few new elements on both days of the Course.

Participants will be encouraged to take a step back from their own position, and envision the entire client relationship from new perspectives.

Coming Soon

To register, please use the contact form in the Registration section, or contact the seminar organizer Tatiana Kaplun directly at kaplun.tatiana@gmail.com.

Please note that the number of participants is limited to 15 students.

Moscow Edition. Round Two

Following the success of the previous edition of Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating for Interpreters, we decided to organize yet another Moscow Edition of the seminar, and so on 23 – 24 September we welcomed the newest members of the Know Your Worth community to our seminar in Moscow.

It was the third time that the seminar was held in a two-day format, and also the third time it was held in Russia, so we were happy to welcome not only new participants, but also some of our alumni, who came to share their most recent experience on the market, and exchange ideas about what they found to have been most useful for them in the months since our previous Moscow Edition.

The format proved once again to be the perfect arrangement for an in-depth discussion of the seminar’s two main subjects: marketing, and negotiating, allowing us to dedicate an entire day to a detailed discussion of each of the topics. We were also able to cover such questions as branding, positioning on the market, prospecting, pricing, pitching, and client relations, and to discuss the many challenges that we, as freelancers, must face on a daily basis.

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We like to see our participants brainstorm some of the more challenging cases together, as this often leads to them finding new and exciting solutions to different marketing and negotiating problems. And once again we were not disappointed. On the contrary. We were particularly happy with the way this edition’s participants responded to the discussion, and would like to thank them for their active participation and boundless curiosity, and for bringing so many cases from their own experience to the table. This gave us a unique opportunity to look at an even broader spectrum of case-studies and real-life examples, and made the Q&A sessions even livelier and more fruitful than usual.

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We also talked about the mindset necessary for successful marketing, and covered some general principles (as well as a number of highly practical aspects) of pricing and negotiating, all necessary steps in building a more sustainable and much more successful interpreting business. We were also able to devote some time to looking into how the interpreting profession is perceived from the outside, all in order to better understand our potential and existing clients.

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Traditionally, one of the main features of the seminar is the atmosphere we try to create to encourage our participants to take an active part in the discussion, sharing their personal experience, and exchanging ideas on how best to implement the new tools and techniques in their work. Which is why we would like to take this opportunity to thank the wonderful team at Impact Hub Moscow for helping us create a unique and memorable atmosphere for the seminar, and for making sure that our participants had a wonderful time and nothing to worry about, except getting to the seminar, and getting the most out of it.

In all honesty, we could not have wished for a better place to hold out seminar, and the two days we spent there proved to be not only incredibly useful, but also great fun.

Which, we firmly believe, is the best way to learn.

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We were also very happy to team up with the Cosines International Contest for Simultaneous / Consecutive Interpreters for this edition. It was an honor to help sponsor an event that was aimed at showcasing interpreters’ abilities, as well as at improving interpretation quality.

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We would also like to take the opportunity to wish you a Happy albeit somewhat Belated International Translation (and Interpreting too!) Day from the Know Your Worth team.

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If you would like to hold a seminar in your area, please contact us via this website, or by contacting the seminar organizer Tatiana Kaplun at kaplun.tatiana@gmail.com.

Happy International Literacy Day

In honor of the International Literacy Day, we would like to suggest couple of books to help you start to become literate in marketing and negotiating. These talk about the fundamentals for any job, including interpreting, without which you can’t get far.
This book was written at the beginning of the 1990s, before social media took over, but is still useful today. If you are just starting your career and have no idea how to be a freelancer, or how to make a living when you don’t have a salaried position in a company, this book has some very basic but excellent insights.
This book was the first to be published to a wide audience, and started transforming people’s views from negotiating as a battle to negotiating as joint problem solving. That transformation is far from complete…
And for the grandfather of all people skills books, that will begin to show you what has been going on around you without you noticing,
There is a reason this is a perennial best seller.
Many of us may already be skilled enough to know what is in these books, but if you are just starting your journey into the world of freelancing, these books are great!

The business of interpreting: FAQ 6 – How do I become more professional?

You are an interpreter – you help others get their ideas across to people from other cultures. That’s what you signed up for when you decided to become an interpreter, so what’s all this about also acting as travel agent, accountant, marketer, customer relations manager, bill collector and so on? And how do you get all of that done when you barely have enough time to train and practice, prepare for meetings, travel to the assignment, and interpret?

The answer is to become a professional! “Wait a minute,” you ask, “but isn’t that what I am already? I do the job and get paid, doesn’t that make me a professional?” In a manner of speaking, yes. But let me explain what is understood by professional in the business world.

A professional business is one that has documented processes for all routine tasks. When hiring a new person for a job, is it only HR that does the interviewing, or does the manager who needs the position filled have more weight in the decision? Is it enough simply to fire someone when they do something bad, or does the business have to document it and go through a specific procedure? Do the sales people stick to a script that has been proven to work with previous customers? Are certain days reserved for certain things, such as office meetings on Monday mornings or casual dress days on Fridays? All of this builds routines,expectations, cohesion, and a corporate culture that everyone contributes to.

Having processes – or routines – is not a new idea, though it seems to have finally caught on with the general public outside the office too. You can find bestselling books listing the morning routines of successful professionals, business hacks that other successful professionals have used to up their game, life hacks that make it easier to get things done, and so on.

But what is at the core of these books, and what can these ideas teach us when we want to become successful professional interpreters?

Amateur vs Professional

First let’s take a look at non-professionals. Amateurs do something they like, but they don’t have set processes to cover routine eventualities. In other words, they fly by the seat of their pants– “Oh, that sounds like a good idea, I’ll try it,”-– until the next good idea comes along. Everything is constantly new, and needs to be thought out every time it comes up.

This takes up valuable time and, because there are no rules, amateurs give different responses when the same questions come up over time. Amateurs don’t develop a consistent message, which means they are unable to build trust with clients, and have to keep convincing existing clients that they are the best bet.

That all sounds exhausting! Not only are they doing double work with existing clients, but they use up valuable time and brainpower re-thinking things that should already have been set up as routine.

To bring this to the world of interpreting, do you remember when you were just starting out? Every time you heard the chairman of a meeting say something, you had to think of the right way to say it. You struggled with what to call the meeting, what to call the participants, how to open and close a meeting… By the time you became a more experienced interpreter, you realized that there were set phrases that took care of the routine parts of a speech, which meant that your brain could then focus on the less routine parts that require more creativity.

So let’s look at your business world outside interpreting – the part you haven’t necessarily focused on at all and that takes up far too much of your time. Why not create your own routines and processes? Make up your own rule book of steps to deal with matters that come up repeatedly so you don’t have to waste time and brain power reinventing the wheel.

Let me give you an example from interpreting: glossaries. They are a valuable tool that shortens meeting preparation time. If they are well organized, you remember that in this organization the “Conseil executif” is called the “Executive Board” and in that organization it is the “Executive Council.” You know what term the negotiators used to refer to a particular phenomenon in the previous round, and even if it isn’t exactly the correct word outside of these negotiations, you won’t have to spend time re-explaining everything to both parties to come up with a new term.

So why not apply this lesson to the non-interpreting tasks you are faced with?

Template it!

Templates are enormously useful, in many different walks of life. If all your glossaries have the same format, you don’t have to think about formatting anymore. If you always do the same thing whenever you accept an assignment, you don’t have to waste time and brainpower thinking about what it is you have to do again.

Areas in our business life that could benefit from routines / templates / processes could include customer relationship management (CRM), social media marketing, sales calls, pricing, manning of meetings, billing, travel.

You could simply set up your own routine, such as always calling the same hotel whenever you go to a specific city – thus building a relationship and earning points with their loyalty programs.

You could set up a billing form on your computer, ready to be completed and sent out as soon as the job is over.

You also have a choice of making up your own system or buying something that has already been set up. For example, you could either buy a more or less expensive CRM program, or else make a simple spreadsheet showing the client’s name, any personal details that you have gathered, when your last contact was, and what your next contact should be about.

The same goes for social media marketing – you may buy a program to help you organize your posts, or simply set up a spreadsheet showing when you want to post what kind of message to which platform.

Another example of a template that could help you with prospects and clients is an FAQ page on your website or computer, to be used whenever you get the same questions from different clients. If the answer is already written out, there is no need to rethink what to say.

And, of course, templates are perfect for pricing.If you’ve done the work of figuring out how much you have to charge to make a living, you have your prices and your arguments all ready to go!

The last example, though it is more of a routine than a template, is to fix a day and time to do whatever it is you have to do. There is a reason why books on successful professionals’ routines (now called “life hacks”) are so popular! Every Friday morning at 9:00 am, it’s billing time. Every last weekend of the month, it’s accounting time. Every evening before you go to bed, it’s time to make your To Do list for the next day, or lay out the outfit you will put on in the morning.

Routines that have the force of rules make things easier for you and for your client. There is no decision to be made on routine matters anymore; you can save your brainpower for the unusual assignments that come your way – and add them to your processes for future reference.

After all, who wants to waste time coming up with new ways of handling routine items when we can spend that time more profitably finding new clients to use our processes on!

Originally published on the blog of the International Association of Conference Interpreters (https://aiic.org/site/world/newsEvents/blog)

Teaming up with the Cosines International Contest for Interpreters

We are very pleased to announce that the next Moscow Edition of the Know Your Worth: Understanding Marketing and Negotiating for Interpreters seminar in Moscow on 23-24 September will become an official warm-up event to the Cosines International Contest for Simultaneous / Consecutive Interpreters.

Finalists in the contest will be offered places on the seminar, and Cosines will include our instructor Julia Poger as one of the official judges of the contest the next weekend. If you are in Moscow, please join us for 3 days of lectures, round tables, master classes, and the finale of the contest, from 28 – 30 September!

For more information about the contest, please visit their official website at cosines-pi.ru.