Networking

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Contents

Overview

Networking should not be confused with only searching for and meeting clients. Networking can also imply meeting other fellow translators that may eventually be in need of colleagues to work on bigger projects. Establishing relationships with potential clients and other translators will always prove to be mutually beneficial. Networking gives translators the chance to exchange experiences, ideas, and support, not to mention that it is also another source of jobs.

Globalization offers new tools and opportunities, including the possibility of networking with colleagues and potential customers everywhere.

Temporary project teams

Imagine you deliver a long, difficult translation and the invoice, receive the thankful acknowledgement from your client and relax. After replenishing the food supply and restoring a modicum of after-delivery order to your place, you start to wait for the next assignment. Maybe some days elapse and you get nervous. A couple of days later you get concerned, and the next week you start looking for that list of 3,000 agencies you got some time ago, to send them your CV. And then an offer arrives, well within your fields of expertise and rates range, but the volume and time requirements are far beyond your capabilities. What do you do? Reject the assignment and remain idle, and risk losing a client that may not know at your door the next time? If you did not work on your networking this could be your only sensible choice.

Networking is patient connections-building and fostering activities that allows you to identify colleagues you may team with, taking into account their professionalism, specialties and the pleasantness of working with them. * If you have properly done your networking, when the big job arrives you will be able to assemble a project team, get the work done, keep the customer satisfied and provide jobs to your temporary partners. Besides, a successful project helps reinforce the bonds and allows teams members to learn more about each other. And the next time maybe one of those partners will get a large assignment and offer you to take part of it. Networking is therefore useful to help freelancers cope with the peaks and valleys of an inherently uneven business.

Giving and getting recommendations

Another key aspect of networking is that of providing and getting referrals. You can recommend colleagues you trust to a customer looking for you when you are already engaged, and your colleague could to the same for you. In both cases this improves the changes of getting a job, keep the customer satisfied and reinforce your networking. You can also do this with trusted colleagues in different fields of expertise. Imagine you do technical translations on telecommunications and your colleague does legal translations. When someone offers you legal stuff you can recommend your friend and he/she could send your way technical jobs. And maybe you can cooperate on the technical annex of a contract or the warranty section of a technical manual. And, if you are a ProZ.com member, you can refer other site members in your profile.

Networking in a globalized world

Professional associations also offer a fertile ground for meeting interesting people, in particular through in-person events such as seminars and conferences.

ProZ.com and other translation workplaces have been created based on the premise that translators will be willing to cooperate if given the appropriate tools and opportunities. ProZ.com offers several tools for networking, including:

At ProZ.com, there are several areas where you can establish relationships with colleagues and potential clients and share experiences:

  • In forums you can get and give translation help, and discuss topics of interest with colleagues and learn more through their experience. Never be afraid of posting your doubts or concerns in ProZ.com forums. There are hundreds of members using the forums on a daily basis, ready and willing to help.
  • In the KudoZ term help system you can ask for and receive help with the translation of tough terms, earn KudoZ PRO points that will later help you stand out in the directory and build a strong relationship with colleagues working in your language pairs and fields of expertise, as well as show potential clients you know are an active professional who knows their field.
  • In translation teams you can work together with colleagues in your language pairs and fields of expertise, give and ask for KudoZ help to team members only, quote on jobs as a team, share files and glossaries, etc. ProZ.com members can create teams and any ProZ.com user can form part of a team.
  • At powwows and other events you will meet other translators, either virtually or in person, share experiences and knowledge, and have fun with fellow professionals. ProZ.com events are announced in the corresponding sections under the "Member activities" tab.
  • In the ProZ.com Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter groups you will have the chance to meet colleagues, highlight your participation in industry specific discussions, share links to jobs or interesting articles, find clients and peers, and provide information on services you provide, etc.
  • Through quick polls and their related discussions, available daily on the home page, you will be able to exchange information with colleagues.
  • Through translation news articles you will not only learn about translation industry trends but also join discussions that originate from each article. Translation news is available under the "Member activities" tab.
  • In translation contests you will also meet colleagues and share your views on the different translation approaches depicted by each proposed translation, as well as have an opportunity to show and hone your translation skills.

Further reading

Discussion related to this article

Please note that ProZ.com forum rules apply to this area.


Networking

C.M. Rawal Identity Verified
India
Local time: 02:46
Member (2007)
English to Hindi
+ ...
I find ProZ.com forum very useful for promoting oneself and getting good jobs. Sep 24, 2012

I was lucky to have participated in one of the translation contests in which I was declared a winner in my language pair.
I organized a powwow about two years ago on the use of CAT tools for translations which was highly appreciated by the participants.
I participate a lot in various activities of ProZ.com and contribute to the best of my ability.
All such activities pay you a lot in some way or the other.
I would therefore recommend all members to be an active participant in all the activities of ProZ.com which would be very much rewarding in the long run.


 

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