Wednesday, 24 August 2016

And a butterfly fluttered by ….

A butterfly fluttered by ....

I have often wondered how my life would have turned out if my grandmother hadn’t loved to swim in the sea. By the time she was eighty, the briny at Brighton was a tad chilly for her, so my mother whisked her off to a newish resort near Tarragona. I decided to join them for a week. That short holiday resulted in my returning to work at the resort the following year. I was hired to deal with English, French and German clients. My Spanish improved considerably and I later moved to the Balearic Islands where I met the father of my child. Years later, after we had returned to the UK, said father and I launched a word processing bureau on the south coast of England – at a time when the technology was new and exciting. From Granny’s swimming holiday to a thriving business in new technology!

The bagatelle effect
I sometimes ask myself whether my experience was unique. I believe - and almost feel guilty about it - that I allowed my career to ricochet chaotically back and forth like the steel ball in an old-fashioned bagatelle board, triggered by random events and random meetings. But perhaps my experience is not so unusual. I decided to ask a few colleagues in the translation industry whether they had made their life-changing decisions by design or simply through happenstance. The stories my colleagues told me illustrate the randomness of life and how chance events created new openings. But every one of these stories illustrates how a knowledge of other languages was the key to those new openings.

A visit to an Irish pub in France
After her degree British-born Vivienne was offered a chance to work as a lectrice in France. Not a pub regular, she nevertheless found herself one day with friends in an Irish pub in her French town. There, she spotted an ad for a trainee translator. She got the job, stayed in France, married and had children, and now works freelance from her home in France.

Girlfriend’s friend’s mum sees an ad
A newspaper advertisement spotted by the mother of one of Mark’s girlfriend’s friends saw the two girls setting off for Sweden to teach English, leaving Mark forlorn in England. But he visited frequently and found that he picked up Swedish quickly. Later, he learned the language formally. Mark pursued a non-language career in industry and technology but was able on many occasions to use his Swedish in his work. On early retirement, he set himself up as a technical translator. By the way, the girlfriend became his wife.

It’s whom you meet
When your plan is to become an interpreter between French and Dutch, your future partner can scupper the best-laid plans. French-born Denise really did not want to learn English, and was happy with her Dutch and German course at the Sorbonne. But she was financing her studies with a part-time teaching job and one day her future - English - husband bounced into her workplace. She eventually came to England and entered a career in teaching. Now – 30 years later – she is working as an interpreter and translator – but between English and French rather than Dutch.

When parents try to mould you
Marlene’s parents wanted her to become a lawyer and she went along with their plans. But she hated every day of her studies in the subject. Alongside her legal studies, she was able to study Indology and Islamic Sciences for a while. She eventually became a lawyer and worked unhappily, first as prosecuting counsel, and later in a large law firm. But her mother became ill and she left to look after her parents. Much later she met her husband and with him she was able to escape the mould her parents had forged for her. With him, she embarked on many business activities, including translation. They run a translation agency and a software business, and she was able to indulge her lifelong ambition to run a wool shop. She is currently studying for an MA in Buddhist studies with a view to translating more in that field. She never looks back on her legal career – except as background for tackling legal translations.

The paper boy delivered the wrong paper
Ryan was a teacher, but after six miserable years was looking for a change. But what? Fate took a hand. Ryan’s parents always took the Times. One day the Daily Mail was popped through the letter box by mistake. In the vacancies section was a recruitment ad for a solicitor in London. Despite not being qualified in law, Ryan applied for the job and got it – on the promise of hard work and fast learning! He stayed there for 20 years. During his time in the City, a translation agency he had dealt with asked him if he’d be interested in working with them. He was. He later took and passed the DipTrans exam – eventually setting up as a freelance translator and interpreter.

As for me: apart from my original language study, very little of my life was planned and my situation today is really the result of life and the people I met, buffeting me from one situation to another. After working in administrative positions for many years – along with the period running the word processing bureau, which meant that I was an early adopter of the technology translators now use, I became a freelance translator. I could do this because in 1991 when I remarried, I finally had the stability at home to risk a period without income. That period without income never actually materialised because I was earning reasonably from translation from the start.

What will you be when you grow up?
When we are children the entire world is open to us. An engine driver, a footballer, an opera singer, a doctor, a dancer: children base their dreams on what they see and hear around them. As we grow older we are shaped by our education, our family circumstances, our developing interests. Talents appear that may or not be nurtured. Parents and teachers set out life plans, sometimes ignoring the wishes of the child. But once adult life begins, the parameters start to multiply and the chaos that is life begins.

I am certain that most people – not just translators – find that their careers are shaped by other people:
parents, future partners, colleagues at work. Chance meetings, illnesses, events, marriage, and children are all factors that influence decisions.

You may be able to start out on life with a master plan. But flexibility in that plan is essential to allow it to bend and shape as life happens. And when that butterfly beats its wings (or in my case when Granny took a dip in the Med) it really does have an effect on other peoples’ lives.

(c) Lucy Brooks
Lucy Brooks is a translator and entrepreneur in the United Kingdom. She thrives on her work and enjoys keeping fit.
This Article first appeared in The Clearing in 2015

Tuesday, 3 February 2015

How we work

How we work

Many translators write blogs about various aspects of a translator's life. They offer advice, encouragement, tips, amusing anecdotes, resources.

Some like to talk to other translators about how they like to work.

Lucy was honoured recently to be interviewed by Linguagreca about her working practices.

You can read the interview here.

Just before Christmas Tess Whitty of Marketing Tips for Translators also interviewed Lucy and Maia. The interview was published in January and you can listen to it here.

Last week's blog was very long, so this one is making up for it by keeping short.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Investigating the gap between translator training and the real business of translation

Why not bookmark this article to read later? It's quite long, but very relevant.

Lucy Brooks and Marta Stelmaszak collaborated on a project to investigate what could be considered to be a neglected area. In this article they analyse the results of a survey and propose some solutions.
Today’s economic situation has meant that traditional routes into translation have become scarcer. Previously, many would-be translators left university with their degrees and sought employment in in-house translation departments where they would hone their skills. Others entered different careers and applied their language skills within their chosen career, thus acquiring an extensive background in their field.

But the market in the 21st century has changed beyond all recognition. There are very few in-house or supervised translation positions available, and the competition for those that remain is fierce. Graduates from an MA course in translating are therefore increasingly turning to freelancing as possibly the only practical option open to them. Figures obtained from the Office of National Statistics[1] indicate that, at 15% of all people in work in the UK, self-employment is currently higher than at any point in the past 40 years. And the outlook is for the trend to continue. Freelancers are the key driver for economic performance in the modern economy.[2] 
Many graduates, whether they are just leaving the education system and entering the workplace for the first time, or career changers with a background in another profession, find that they are ill-prepared for running their own business. MA courses throughout the country teach the art of translation and that is what they should do of course. But should they also be providing in-depth business training?

Business training at university

To be fair, many of the MA courses of which we have become aware offer business modules, but in some cases they are not compulsory, and in all cases they are not very comprehensive. Figures shown at a recent conference [3] on the subject of business preparation showed that 64% of the courses surveyed offered no business/professional skills module, and only 12% insisted that all students attend them. Largely the content of such curricula has remained the same, leaving many excellent translators without the necessary business acumen.

The main question here is, does this matter? And how does it affect translators starting on their freelance careers.

Survey of MA graduates working as freelance translators

In order to answer these questions the authors conducted a survey to ascertain the scale of the problem. Respondees from all over the world were asked to tell us how prepared they felt after they graduated from their MA courses[4]. The results were quite alarming.

How much business training at University?

Respondents were first asked how much training they received during their MA course in the business and commercial aspects of running a translation business. Nearly 13% said they had received “a lot”, i.e. several hours. Just over 28% said they had received two hours or less, but the vast majority (59%) said “none at all”. This bears out the information given at the conference mentioned above. While this might seem to be an indictment of the course itelf, at least one person, at a university which offered such training, but without making it a compulsory component of the degree said: Business training was offered for free, over many hours and topics, but as an extra option that didn't count towards the final degree. As it wasn't compulsory, most students didn't bother going, and it makes me angry to hear those same translators complaining today about the lack of business training in their degree!

Of students who graduated from MAs in translation and who responded to the question “When you started out as a freelance translator how confident did you feel in the business world?” only 2% said they were very confident, with 31% stating that they were reasonably confident. 58% felt they were not at all confident while 10% confessed to being “terrified”. Tellingly, when respondents who had not done an MA were included, the figures changed slightly for the better (only 6.6% were terrified!)

What business knowledge was lacking?

We investigated further by asking what business knowledge they felt they lacked when they started. There were many suggestions as the answer was in free-form response, but the comments repeatedly included: finding clients, accounts, billing, communication, marketing and prospecting, pricing, negotiation, legal structures, and more.

Plugging the gaps

So how does this lack of knowledge affect translators and what have individuals done to plug the
gaps in their knowledge? Again, answers were free-form, and included: reading, personal research, workshops and courses run by various CPD organisations, studying HMRC guidelines, small business courses, consulting with colleagues, attending the Business School for Translators, local chamber of commerce, The variety of sources and information obtained by freelancers on their own was huge. Sadly one person who responded to the survey said they had given up.

Another question asked what, despite the efforts translators were making to train themselves, they felt they still lacked. Here the responses included: more specialised subject knowledge, marketing, and negotiation skills.

Satisfactory income levels?

The survey also asked respondents to say if they were happy with their income from working as a freelance translator. It was gratifying that only 5% said they felt they did not earn enough, but the general picture shows that, despite working full time, and with many years of experience, around half of respondents were not particularly happy with their income levels, while only 21% professed to be happy with their income level. (The difference between these percentages and 100% is explained by those who declined to answer that question.)

Responsibility to provide training

All these figures lead us to ask the question: Whose responsibility is it to provide business training for freelance translators and interpreters? Some respondents clearly felt that the MA courses should provide more training. “I had a module called a business of translation and it was quite good, but it was not enough. Covered very basics but nothing about looking for clients and very little on marketing”. “No training and absolutely no follow-up. Pretty much on my own.”. However most stressed that they were at university for the academic side of things, though they would have appreciated more on the practical side of freelancing.

Training budget for translators?

So, who should be providing the training? There is no doubt that post-university business training
exists for translators (see the panel for suggestions). Professional associations are increasingly offering excellent courses for new entrants to the profession, and there are private commercial enterprises doing the same, and but in all cases, freelancers will need to fund it themselves. Launching a business requires a certain amount of start-up funding: equipment, software, advertising and marketing, professional memberships, and also to cover the early months/years while earnings may not have peaked. The survey clearly shows that new entrants to freelance translation also undoubtedly need to budget time and money for training in business matters.

Taking business skills training further

To conclude this article, we considered how the situation may be changed for the better. Based on our survey results, it seems that even when business skills training opportunities are provided, students and graduates do not engage actively in improving their knowledge in this area while still at university. The same may also apply to new entrants to the profession from other paths, such as full-time employment, or career-changers. Concentrating on translation skills and disregarding the complexity of the business setting around translation seems to be creating a significant gap between training and career.

To remedy this situation, we suggest raising awareness of business skills throughout translator training. By opening a dialogue about the business conditions of working as a translator, newcomers to the profession are likely to engage more and understand the importance of business knowledge. This responsibility should lie with all translator training providers. While it is encouraging to see more and more universities providing opportunities for employability skills development, educational institutions remain the first and only point of contact for many translation students. Therefore their awareness-raising activities are likely to have the biggest impact.

Universities also often provide facilities such as career centres, career fairs or services, yet these are
mostly geared towards finding employment and improving employability, which does not prepare translation students for freelance or flexible careers, let alone running a business. With an increasing number of graduates in all domains jumping straight into self-employment, universities should consider providing career advice for entrepreneurs, as well as business workshops across all skills.

The gap in business skills training also calls for a tighter cooperation between universities and professional organisations, invaluable resources of skills, experience and practical business knowledge. Looking across industries, it is worth noting that mentoring schemes are particularly effective. Some of the existing initiatives include Starting Work as a Translator or Interpreter seminar held yearly at the University of Westminster in co-operation with ITI and Routes into Languages.

Finally, neither universities nor professional organisations should be solely responsible for providing business skills training. Private companies, benefitting from the experience and knowledge of their owners, are already making efforts to bridge the gaps. For example, eCPD Webinars, online Continuing Professional Development training provider, apart from its regular calendar of events, is offering on-demand video training for new translators, as well as the Business School for Translators course together with Marta Stelmaszak, an author and blogger about business skills in translation. Other successful translators are also starting to provide training and consultancy services, especially in the areas of marketing and branding. Further developments in this area should include bringing in outside expertise, for example from professional marketers, business developers and strategists, to the world of translation. Career and business coaching also provides an interesting, yet unexplored avenue in the business of translation.

The ultimate responsibility lies, of course, with individual translators and interpreters. Taking a more serious look at business skills needed to start as a freelance service provider is just the first step. New entrants to the profession could manage the gap themselves by preparing structured and comprehensive CPD plans for themselves involving business and marketing knowledge, as well as allocating budget to business skills training.

We recommend that you investigate the following:
eCPD Webinars has a page dedicated to new translators

The Business School forTranslators run by Marta Stelmaszak and eCPD Webinars

ITI website. Look for Setting Up as a Freelance Translator

CIOL website. Look under training. Members of the translating Division also receive a Translators’ Pack, full of advice for new entrants to the profession.

Routes Into languages.

The authors:

Lucy Brooks, Chartered Linguist (CL),FCIL, MITI has been in business for over 30 years, and for the past 24 she has operated a successful commercial and industrial translation business. She is a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Linguists, a qualified member of ITI, and was one of the first to attain the newly created professional chartered status for linguists. In 2009 – 2010 she instituted a series of CPD training webinars for the Chartered Institute of Linguists and drove forward a dynamic programme of professional development. She went on to found eCPD Webinars in 2010.

Marta Stelmaszak is a Polish – English translator and interpreter helping SMEs in Poland and the UK grow their businesses through better online communication. She graduated in Management, Information Systems and Innovation from the LSE. She’s one of top 15 freelancers in the UK as selected by IPSE. Marta runs the Business School for Translators recently turned into an online course and published a book.

[1] Office of National Statistics report.

[2] The Role of Freelancers in the 21st Century British Economy . Professor Andrew Burke, published by PCG - Report

[3] Business skills provision in postgraduate translation courses Portsmouth Translation Conference, 8 November 2014. Karen Stokes, FCIL, MITI, CL (Translator)

[4] The survey results included MA graduates in the past 15 years.

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Has the individual chartered status review by CIoL produced the goods?

In 2012 I wrote a blog post asking: Is individual chartered status working for our profession?  It was the most popular posts I have ever written and it elicited many comments. Two and a half years later I can announce that the review I called for has taken place. And for the better!

Instead of trammeling applicants into a narrow field of work (translating, interpreting or education) now, the scheme allows a professional linguist who performs all of these diversified tasks (and others) to apply on the basis of their varied professional work.

Many translators were put off from applying because they did not translate a sufficiently high number of words, simply because they spent time interpreting or teaching, or in some other activity. That rule has been relaxed.

Others were put off by the expense of the application and interview process. The review team has addressed that issue as well by reducing the application fee to just £50.

As from today, all that is required to join the band of Chartered Linguists is:

  • At least two years’ membership of CioL (or as a Fellow)
  • To be in regular professional practice at the requisite level
  • An engagement in CPD on a regular basis. 

As someone pointed out on TransNet today, chimney sweeps and heating engineers are accredited by their appropriate bodies. Here in Sussex local tradesmen register with Checkatrade, which ensures they are of good character. That way their clients know that they are dealing with someone who is not a cowboy and will do a good job. So I find it quite strange that there still appears to be resistance to applying for the new CL status. Ordinary membership (or fellowship) of the Institute is not enough. It does not certify that the member is in regular practice, nor does it show that the member is keeping up with trends and language skills. An extra level is required. And that level is Chartered status. 

I quote from the recently updated CioL website:

“The purpose of the Chartered Linguist (CL) scheme is to ensure  that users of language services and employers have access to a comprehensive, verified and up to date source of  qualified, practising and experienced professional linguists with a demonstrated commitment to Continuing Professional Development (CPD).  The CL register is held by CIOL in the public interest. Chartered Linguists must therefore be able to demonstrate their competence as a professional linguist, based on a combination of their qualifications, past experience and current practice,  and their commitment to  maintaining their skills and knowledge through continuing professional development.”

I believe that this new revised scheme is what we have been waiting for. It’s no longer so expensive, no longer so restrictive, and it is very much more flexible. All members of the Institute should consider applying for it – and applying for it now while the application fee is waived for the first month. We need to start a momentum of applications and we should start it now until we have large numbers on the register which can then be used as a marketing tool, rather like our Checkatrade scheme does. It won't happen in a day, but we need to start it off.

For the moment it is restricted to members and fellows of the CioL. I am not privy to the reasons for this, but once the pilot has rolled out, it may well be extended to all linguists working in the UK and beyond.

I believe we should applaud the Institute for the work they do on our behalf, and I abhor the negativity that seems to abound on the translators’ discussion forum run by that same Institute.

Will you be applying? I will be applying to regain the status of which I was so proud.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

Are you ready to boost your career with eCPD?

New Term at eCPD

Did you attend our "Kick-Off" event on 2nd September? Don't worry if you couldn't make it. You can download the slides here.skills
Lucy Brooks, Managing Director of eCPD, outlined the exciting programme of events already arranged for the 2014 -15 autumn and winter season, and mentioned others in the pipeline.

She also explained some money-saving options for translators and interpreters wishing to hone their skills, knowledge and expertise in their profession.
eCPD will be represented at a number of forthcoming conferences and language events and Lucy Brooks will be presenting workshops at two of these. Full details are on the slides.

During the webinar Lucy asked people what they thought about seminars and courses by webinar. After four years (and eCPD celebrates its birthday this week), and with so many copy-cats on the scene, she wants to make eCPD webinars more interactive with a lot of participation from the audience. This could be enhanced use of question times, polls, suggestions during workshops, and also with the aid of cameras before a webinar begins. In fact most people did not agree with Lucy that webinars had become rather impersonal, but nevertheless, eCPD is trying very hard to introduce more ways of interacting with attendees to improve the already high quality of the training it provides.

Continuing professional development is vital for all professionals in the language industry. Without it we stand still and never develop. The world never stands still. Nor should we.

Here are just a few of this season's events. There really is something for everyone here!

The Price is Right on 9th September.
Next Level Business Bootcamp for established translators. 3 parts, starting Monday 8th September.
IntelliWebSearch course starting on 6 October.
Going Freelance, NervousShort course on 8 and 15 October for new freelance translators
Ironing Out MemoQ course starting on 9 October.
The Perils of Translating International Contracts on 16 October with the acknowledged expert in the field.

For the rest of the programme, click here.

Monday, 18 August 2014

Results of our summer survey

98% satisfaction

In our survey 98 percent of respondents who attended at least one training event said that the webinar(s) they had attended were all, or mostly, great and that they learned from them.
Miss the survey? You can still review us here.

A huge thank you to everyone who took the time and trouble to fill in our survey during July and August. We have closed it now and this is a summary of the results.

At eCPD we try very hard to implement your proposals and suggestions. Many of the things you wanted us to consider are already in the pipeline, and we are open-minded about the rest. Why not tune into our Kick-off on September 2nd to see what we have in store for next term.

Summary of results
89 people responded.  Most (84%) had attended at least one webinar, with nearly 40% being frequent eCPD clients.

We asked you to give us some ideas of future topics
There were many suggestions, some of which have already been covered, and in those cases, we are considering updating and building on past events. There were some great ideas and Lucy will follow these up and try to line up excellent experienced trainers in the fields you suggest.

Ideas included: translating in IT, telecommunications, micro-electronics, webinars in specific
language pairs, genetics, finance, website translation, courses for interpreters, wine, veterinary medicine, more transcreation events, the education sector, nature conservation, cardiology  – the list is as long and varied as an undergraduate course list. There was also a clear desire for us to go more in-depth into subjects for which we have already provided an introduction.

Language pairs
We found that the most frequent language pair (with English) among the respondents was French (46.5%) followed by Spanish and German. Other languages were of course represented but in small numbers. We often consider running webinars in other languages but we do need them to be commercially viable. That's why most of our events are language-neutral. If we do not offer anything in your specific pair, you will probably find that most national professional organisations run their own programmes of events.

Length of training sessions
We asked you how long you like each separate session to be. The majority opted for an hour to 90 minutes as being the most time that was affordable out of a busy day – or indeed to concentrate on a difficult subject.  But respondents were clear that it would really depend on the content and type of seminar.

We then asked how important accreditation from professional bodies is to you. We asked because we are currently negotiating with the two main bodies in the UK for overall accreditation of our webinars and courses. Our training events are already individually approved by ATA and ITI. The new accreditation schemes are likely to come into being next year.

Seventy-seven percent of respondents said that accreditation by a recognised body was fairly important or extremely important. The rest felt that it didn’t really matter to them.

Mix and match, or full course
The sixth question asked whether you like to attend a complete course of, say, 4 lessons, or to be able to choose which ones out of the course you’d like to attend. Obviously this depends on the course. There are some where you really do need to attend every lesson to benefit, but others are very easy to split into discrete sessions. Since the majority wished to have the option to pick out certain sessions, we will continue to arrange courses on these lines, unless the content requires otherwise. We believe that this will help some translators and interpreters to juggle small budgets.

Overall satisfaction
We were very happy with the results of the next question. We asked what you thought about the general standard of eCPD Webinars. A gratifying 98 percent of those who had attended at least one training event said that all or most of the webinars they had attended were great and that they learned from them. 

Comments to this question included a request for lots of interactivity in workshop-style webinars (we are working on that!). And we especially like the person who said “There is no other word for it but excellent!"

Finally we asked about the cost of our training courses

Nobody thought we pitched our prices too low (who would?), but 96.5% felt it was just about right. Only a few said our prices were too high.
We haven’t altered the price of a standard “one-off” webinar for some time, but the cost of the courses do vary a bit depending on the trainer, the content and whether it includes a written assignment or other interaction with the attendee. But we usually have different pricing regimes so that you can pick and mix according to your budget and available time.

We are very aware of translators’ and interpreters’ budgets when it comes to planning CPD. However you should be aware that we at eCPD spend many many hours planning and organising these events, and our overheads can run quite high. We will not vastly increase our prices next year, but the prices will have to increase a little in line with the current (very low) inflation rate.

Some unsolicited comments we received

"Thank you for everything you provide!"

"Keep up the good work, thanks."

"I think the price is fair for what they are."

"Packed with information, good value considering experience packed in"

"For FIFPL funding in France your courses needed to fit the required structure."

"I think the webinars are very good value for money, and appreciate this very much. A small increase in the price would not deter me from participating"

"It would be better if we could have access to the recording for unlimited time"

Apropos that last comment, in fact access to recordings for those who purchased a seat at the live webinar actually lasts up to a year on the Gotowebinar host. However we prefer you to watch them within 3 months in case there is an issue with storage space.
We will consider extending the standard period during which you can view an on-demand webinar, but as many of you already know – we can extend access in special circumstances such as illness or similar.

Although the survey is now closed, if you wish to comment further, please do so below, or write a review.

Again, thank you to everyone who responded and to all our eCPD customers.

Lucy at eCPD Webinars

Tuesday, 20 May 2014

Getting started on the freelance translator’s ladder of success

As a language graduate with a university education behind you, you can believe that you are all set for a career as a freelance translator or interpreter. But this may be far from the truth. In today’s economic climate where in-house jobs are scarce, many translators decide to go freelance straightaway. Yet excellent translators can flounder in the business world of marketing, commerce, credit control, and price negotiation.

eCPD Webinars can help newly qualified translators to get their business started by answering questions such as: How do I set up my business? What equipment do I need? Where do I find my first clients? How do I gain that crucial first experience?

eCPD’s Lucy Brooks has done a great deal of research in this area and eCPD Webinars now has a range of online events aimed at translators just starting out on their careers.

Starting out in business as a translator 
The options are set out on a special ‘Starting out’ tab on the website. From that page you can also download a free spreadsheet which will help you work out your costs and what you need to earn to make a living. There is even a £10 discount if you purchase 3 webinars from this page.

Advice is given either in the form of a recorded webinar or a future event. These include business advice, advice on the tools you need to work with, on marketing your services and on writing a CV that will work.
And in October 2014 Lucy joins freelance translator Lloyd Bingham in a double webinar to help you through those first difficult months or years. They will tackle the practical and legal aspects that must be considered before you start: business structures*, funding, taxation, finding your first clients and setting your rates, as well as the administrative procedures you need to put in place for smooth management. We will delve into some recommendations for efficient marketing, equipment, and financial planning and will offer many resources for further investigation.  The second session will look at further aspects that are not taught on any MA course, such as what qualities a freelance translator requires, how to gain that crucial initial experience and break the cycle of needing experience to get work, but needing work to get experience. We will also look at how to promote yourself, using your CV, social media and a website or blog.

*Please note that the first session will concentrate heavily on the situation in the United Kingdom. Attendees in other countries will still gain from it in general terms, but should be aware of this restriction.

Business School
If you want more in-depth marketing and business training look no further than the Business School for Translators. This is a 5 and a half hour intensive course to show you how to plan your career, run your business, work with agencies, find direct clients and give you an insight into marketing techniques. The next course starts on June 3rd. But hurry, at the time of writing places were going fast.

Advanced Business School
More advanced practitioners may find Marta’s advanced Boot Camp in September 2014 will boost business and enhance their careers. Watch this video to find out more.

And a FREE taster of all this

On Friday 6th June Lucy Brooks will be giving a free webinar on starting out as a translator. Anyone thinking of starting out is welcome to attend. It will offer some sound advise and will also showcase eCPD's programme. If you want to attend, sign up here.

 Communication is our future
Our global economy needs good translators. The translation industry is growing. The pressures are very great and some will flounder without good guidance. Translators who produce high quality work just need to get their first high-quality clients to sail off on the start of a successful career. eCPD can help you over the first hurdles.