As the economy is becoming increasingly globalized, businesses are being forced to expand their reach or risk fading into irrelevance.
However, many businesses, while they may offer a great product or service, are not prepared to deal with an international campaign, because they lack the language of their chosen new market as well as a deep knowledge of its culture. This can lead to some tricky situations when international business meetings need to be conducted. This is why you need a great human translator to make sure that your message gets across to your new business partners, exactly the way you intend it to. Even in the likely situation that you are interacting with second language speakers who know English, a human translator is still an important asset. Here are a few reasons why you should start looking for that great interpreter before you set the date for your next international business meeting.
A Good Interpreter Will Understand Cultural Meanings of Words and Symbols
Something that people often forget is that terms and symbols can carry different meanings across cultures. Even if your audience understands English, you may use a symbol or metaphor that has a completely different meaning to your audience than it does to you or is even simply meaningless to them. A good human translator can help you translate what you mean into terms that your audience can understand. This is so important because one misunderstanding can throw off the tone of an entire meeting. This can be potentially disastrous if you are working on large negotiations. So make sure this does not happen by seeking the assistance of an interpreter who has a deep understanding of the language and cultural assumptions of your audience. Don’t be tempted to go with a low-quality translator. While finding the best translator possible may seem superfluous when you’re planning out your meeting, you will quickly realize how much time and money you save once you are in the middle of the negotiation process. The interpreter helps you avoid issues caused by misunderstandings, which increases your chance of getting the deal and speeds up the entire process.
A Good Interpreter will Be Aware of Dialect
Going off of the above, two different dialects in the same language can have wide gaps in meaning between them. Think about the differences between British and American English. Both groups claim to be the English language, but if an American suddenly wakes up in London, he or she will have a hard time figuring out the meaning of a lot of different words. If someone says the word, “biscuit,” in London, they would be talking about a cookie, but for an American, the word “biscuit” likely conjure up images of flaky southern goodness. An expert human translator will have an understanding of the different dialects both in English and in the language of your chosen audience. This means that your human translator can account for these dialect differences and make sure your message gets across. This is important because many times words from different American dialects can throw off your audience if you are conducting the meeting in English. Why? The people you’re speaking to in an international business meeting may have a grasp of basic communication in English. They will, however, most likely not understand phrases from your particular dialect or metaphors and similes that make perfect sense to you as a native speaker. A good interpreter can not only create an easy flow of communication across languages but also across dialects.
A Good Interpreter Will Save You Time
Whether speaking with people who have a grasp of English, or using your knowledge to communicate, you will spend a lot of time trying to figure out the best way to get your point across if you are conducting a high stakes international business meeting. After all, if you say something incorrectly in their language, or you use an obscure phrase in English, it could throw the entire meeting off course and potentially cost your company huge sums of money. However, with a professional interpreter, you don’t have to focus on these worries. You can save your time to focus on the actual content of the meeting instead. A professional interpreter can tell you exactly what should be said whether you’re using English or speaking in your audience’s language if you choose to try to communicate yourself. If you find that the language barrier is just too large to cross while still effectively conducing a meeting that garners results, then your interpreter can speed up the process by simply translating as the meeting proceeds. This can save you a ton of time, and also save your business a lot of money that could be lost if you have to prolong negotiations because you’re being slowed down by language.