– a review by Carlota Dalziel
pictures by Rudy Tellez
On Saturday, April 5, Cabrini College was again the setting for another successful DVTA event: Success in the 21st Century, a full day seminar for translators and interpreters searching to improve their business skills.
Forty-eight very enthusiastic members and friends turned up to listen to Monique-Paule Tubb, the first presenter, define the different aspects of success, its ingredients and the steps to be taken to attain it. Monique-Paule, an ATA member with over 30 years experience in all aspects of the foreign language business, instructed her captivated audience to focus on what it wants according to the standards it sets for itself. She outlined the need for professional knowledge, continuing education, and adapting to the world of technology that provides the tools for our career development. The need for marketing our business was underlined, as well as the importance of doing a job in a timely fashion, having a positive attitude and displaying friendliness at all times. Nothing is impossible. Focus on your goal and then go for it! Thank you, Monique-Paule.
After a very welcome break for refreshments, the next segment of the morning was taken by Jonathan Hine’s Getting Down to Business: Management Accounting for T&I Professionals. Jonathan, a full time translator and writer of self-help books and articles for freelancers, is a frequent presenter at ATA conferences and an ATA mentor and certification grader. The purpose of this presentation was to get us to think of ourselves as business people. The attendees listened attentively to information about setting rates, subcontracting, reducing overheads, making time to translate/interpret, acquiring technology and tools, taking continuing education courses, and were even told how to take a vacation with double duty, business and pleasure. Mr. Hine’s dynamic personality was inspiring, and the anecdotes he told were well received by the audience. His presentation was definitely an eye-opener. “If you are not net-working you are not-working,” was one of his punch-lines. Thank you, Jonathan.
Lunch was offered next in the adjoining hall, with seating offered in-doors and at attractive tables in the sunshine outside. It was the time for networking with our colleagues over delicious assorted sandwiches, several salads, hot and cold drinks, fruit salad and a variety of cookies. As is well known by now, DVTA does a good job at keeping attendees comfortable and well-fed at its events.
The afternoon segment was given by Amanda Poston, Operations Director at Globo Language Solutions, whose presentation was A Freelancer’s Guide to Social Media Marketing. Amanda explained the benefits of a social media presence which, when used correctly, is a powerful, accessible, and affordable method of advertising and networking. The presentation discussed increasing online presence, where and how to build profiles, what pitfalls to avoid, where to invest time and money, and strategies for targeting clients. If we consider that one hundred per cent of people in business depend on social media for their decisions, we should do the same, and learn to use social media effectively. Amanda gave her audience numerous tips as well as information on websites to be used to our best advantage. Thank you, Amanda.
The day ended with a Wrap-up Panel Discussion with all three presenters and Q & A from 3 to 4 pm, although it must be said that the discussion was still animated at 4.30 pm. An excellent use of a Saturday! We certainly charged our batteries. As Jerry Miller said in 1972 (another quote Jonathan Hine had up his sleeve) “If you are not having fun, you are not doing it right.” We must have done it right.