You say that sample translations are not the best way to evaluate a translation agency. Can you explain why and can you provide other metrics a company should use?
Here’s what John says…
Most sample translations don’t allow Language Service Providers (LSPs) to follow standard translation processes and often forces them to break industry best practices Continue reading »
It’s Thursday night. Despite wintery weather impeding much of the US, skies are clear and the weather is calm in Fort Lauderdale. One hundred men and women gather at Mills Pond Park. There are four fields; bags are placed on each accordingly. Eight t-shirt colors indicate eight teams play tonight. We lace our cleats and run warm up laps. The head coach shouts the lineup while referees and baseline coaches take their places. The pitcher checks that his teammates are in position and tosses the first pitch of the night. The big red ball glides toward home plate. The kickballgame has begun!
The ability to pull these games off week after week, for 52 weeks, involves the meticulous coordination and collaboration Continue reading »
It’s the beginning of the year, and what better time to reassess or remind ourselves of our personal strengths, and how we’re going to capitalize on them both personally and professionally? Years ago, I had the pleasure of reading Gallup’s StrengthsFinder book, which spent months on the NY Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller lists. After reading the book, I proceeded to take the strengths assessment, which is a “test” that assigns top personality themes based on responses to a set of questions. (If you haven’t taken this test, I highly recommend it — it’s fun and very enlightening!)
Being the hard-charging, “Type A+,” demanding, over-achiever that I am, I expected my result to yield a top theme of “Achiever,” or “Self Assurance,” or “Competition.” However, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that my top theme is “Individualization,” which according to StrengthsFinder is defined as:
“People strong in the Individualization theme are intrigued with the unique qualities of each person. They have a gift for figuring out how people who are different can work together productively.”
Wow! I can really relate to this, and it’s exactly what I’m charged with here at Lionbridge. In fact, if Lionbridge were to take a Corporate version of the StrengthsFinder (new product idea for Gallup!), I’m willing to bet that Lionbridge’s top theme might also be “Individualization.”
I see “Individualizaton” in action every day at Lionbridge as we engage clients in conversations around content development, global social media, global internet search, localization, and multilingual chat. Lionbridge has a unique gift for figuring out how people who are different can work together productively. A few examples:
- Partnering with the world’s largest search engine company to solve complex needs related to global search and content relevancy
- Replicating an automotive assembly production environment to deliver a “just-in-time” technical documentation solution
- Employing a multi-continent localization solution to take advantage of working hours across the U.S., Europe, and Asia
- Facilitating software pilot projects to help leading-edge technology giants test brand-new globalization communication
These programs are successful in part due to “Individualization,” and the unique qualities that clients and Lionbridge bring and collectively optimize.
During a recent trip to Asia, I lived “Individualization” as I bonded with coworkers, laughed with clients, haggled with shopkeepers, and navigated cities with my poorly pronounced “Xie Xie.” “Individualization.” It’s one of the attributes that makes Lionbridge special, and it’s no coincidence that our customized solutions speak directly to this.
Wouldn’t it be great if world leaders were to better understand and live “Individualization?”
In the meantime, I’d love to know your top theme. Take the StrengthFinders test and drop me a line! I’m predicting a lot of “Individualization” out there!
Allison McDougall, Vice President Emerging Business, blogs about individualization, an important quality for Lionbridge and our customers as we work together to solve business challenges.
We recently received a question about best practices for translating Interactive Voice Response (IVR) prompts into Spanish. The company was planning to translate each prompt individually and then record them. Many of the prompts were self-contained sentences, but there were a significant number of sentence fragments, for example: Continue reading »
If Part I of my article seemed like it should have been titled “Time Zones: the Phantom Menace,” then think of Part II as “a New Hope.”
Last time, we looked at how time zones can impact a project’s duration, and so far, the example scenarios we’ve introduced all seem to suggest that multiple time zones work to the disadvantage of the project’s duration and process cycle efficiency. Continue reading »
I recently attended the CTIA show in San Francisco to spend time with the Mobile Development Community stakeholders and discuss how they are viewing the localization of mobile apps and global app sales.
Although there are a number of global app storefronts that exist today, most mobile app developers are still developing and publishing in their own native language. While it is possible to get mobile applications localized and published globally today, the effort falls heavily on the developer to meet all the requirements prior to hitting the “submit your app” button, regardless of language.
Developers are confronted with many questions Continue reading »
If you’re charged with the stewardship of a global web presence for your organization, or are contemplating a leap into the fray soon, you will be spending a lot of time logged into your web content management system. The CMS is “command-central” for content flowing to public and internal websites for most companies at this point. Visibility, rights management, approvals, review and reporting all find a home within the CMS, and when they finally work, they offer massive advantages in process efficiency and significantly lower the total administrative and cost impact of content. So far so good!
However, as those responsible for these “command-centrals” know, control and visibility stops as soon as additional languages enter the mix. CMS alone don’t handle the global aspect of content very well at all, and so “cut”, “paste,” and “manual file transfer” become unwelcome additional requirements whenever multiple language needs spring up—adding back pain, time, and cost to the content cycle. Continue reading »
Effective expansion into emerging markets goes beyond traditional translation and localization models and requires the enablement of in-country partners. Developing an active, local presence in emerging markets can create a long-term, sustainable growth model for your company. Consider some key outcomes of a more local approach, typically managed by a language service provider:
• Reduce your company’s burden of having to manage regional and local partners
• Stimulate growth of local communities by creating work opportunities in the fields of translation/localization Continue reading »