Polish translator and interpreter

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Idioms and the benefits of professional translation services

Polish translatorsPosted by Fiules Fri, October 05, 2012 20:23:36

The translation of idioms can be tricky.

Among the many Italian phrases that I heard for the first time during my year abroad in Bergamo, Italy, the one that has stuck with me is “In bocca al lupo”, literally meaning “into the mouth of the wolf”. It was exchanged by students before going into an exam to wish each other good luck. Far more exciting than breaking a leg! Idiomatic expressions like these are one of the many pitfalls for a translator. They add colour and depth to the language but they aren’t always easily understood, especially when translated literally. Native speakers grow up knowing these phrases but foreign speakers must learn them as another part of the language. They can often show links to the culture of the country and require certain cultural knowledge, which a native speaker already has, to be understood. Experienced translators come to know how to tackle these parts of language but often it is steeping this in mind, can anything really beat professional translation services?

Translators frequently come across idiomatic expressions in their work. They must recognise that a literal translation is not required and then the search begins! They need to find an adequate expression in the target language to put across the meaning intended by the author. Take the German expression “Wer A sagt, muss auch B sagen”, translate it into English and you get the phrase “If you say A, you must also say B” but this has no real significance because it is not used in the English language and culture. An equivalent idiomatic expression in English might be “In for a penny, in for a pound” with the meaning that you should start what you finish, if you’ve bet a penny you might as well take the risk and bet a pound.

The problem is that idioms often contain words that have no connection to their original meaning when used in this particular phrase. The well known English expression “It’s raining cats and dogs” obviously does not mean that cats and dogs are literally falling from the sky but people do use this phrase to express that it is raining heavily. There are various suggestions as to where this expression originated, ranging from mythology to an 18th Century author. Whereas to someone learning English, this expression might seem very odd, many native speakers of English have grown up with this turn of phrase and understand its meaning. The same phrase exists in German, “Es regnet Katze und Hunde” so miscommunication is avoided. In Italian though the equivalent would be “piove a catinelle” “it’s raining as from basins” – not too distant from the English “It’s raining buckets”. Unfortunately, trying to find an equivalent in other languages by beginning with a literal translation when there is very little similarity between the sayings may only lead to further confusion; even more reason to leave it to the professional translation services!

In many ways translation is an art form and idiomatic expressions are one of many intricacies that make professional translation such an interesting job! Regardless of how effective machine translation seems at times, it cannot compare to professional translation services because it is unable to deal with these aspects of language. They are an essential part of language which cannot be translated using theoretical constructs and so need a professional to handle them with care!

For more information on the translation services we offer, please visit our Polish translation services page.

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Characteristics of a great Polish translation project manager

Polish translatorsPosted by Fiules Tue, August 07, 2012 18:24:41

The 6 critical characteristics of a great Polish translation project manager

Many aspects go into a quality translation program, from dedicated linguists to assisting software. But one of the most valuable parts of an effect translation program is to have a great Polish translation project manager. After all, they’re the ones managing almost every aspect of your translation process.

When we begin work with a client we’re often asked about our project managers, and their abilities, strengths and weakness. And if we’re not, we’re often surprised – because we consider them as one of the most important contributors of a client’s satisfaction.

Having several years of experience being both a project manager and manager of the likes, I garnered a list of critical characteristics that I think every project manager of translations needs to have to really go above and beyond.

Exceptional Multitasker – It’s no secret that a Polish translation project manager’s day is filled with multiple tasks. Assisting linguists, developing processes and managing multiple project in multiple languages are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to daily activities. Being able to effectively multitask and manage multiple components of a project at once is critical to not only the success of each project, but to the sanity of the project manager.

Effective communicator –It is without a doubt that project timelines and Polish translation deliverables depend upon the clarity and timeliness of communications. Being a Polish translation project manager means having effective communication abilities to both understand the client and lead a positive performance from their team.

Problem solver – Like most things in life, challenges can arise. During Polish translations, it is how a project manager approaches them and the way that they are resolved that grows strong business relationships. In short, great Polish translation project managers make solutions rather than excuses. Even if there is a long, arduous project in front them, thinking outside-the-box and making solutions for the barriers results in a better outcome for all involved.

Positive –Facing demands from both clients and coworkers can be stressful. An average translation project manager may crack under pressure, but a project manager with a positive attitude can lead through difficult times. Not to forget that having a positive outlook and being easy to talk with makes most business conversations a lot more bearable.

Organized – Polish translation project managers are often faced with many different aspects of a project at once, such as budgeting, timeline development, editing, etc… In order to successfully implement all parts of a process, a project manager needs to be organized. And well organized, at that. Any missteps or displacements could mean timeline delays and frustrated clients. A great project manager will find an ordered structure that works and will stick to it.

Flexible – In the world of translations, there’s no black and white. Between juggling office hours, meeting customer demands and assisting team members, a translation project manager has a lot to manage. From leveraging technical solutions to implementing process changes, being flexible and willing to make adjustments really speaks to the needs of clients and shows the project manager values their line of work.

Whether looking for the perfect project manager or looking to be one yourself, keep these six critical characteristics in mind. I know they keep our team going.



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