The rise of digital translators like Google Translate has led some people to believe that hiring professional interpreters is not worthy anymore. Or worse: that an amateur bilingual speaker can do the job merely with the help of the mentioned tools. Nothing further from the truth.

The thing is, translating is not as simple as it appears. Actually, simplicity can be quite elusive when interpreting in one language and delivering in another. This is something an expert can assure.

So, what are the skills that make professional interpreters essential in the age of algorithms and automation?

Unraveling intentions in real-time

Only the sharpest of minds can decipher a sentence, understand its meaning and provide an equal interpretation in just a few seconds. This is an ability that can only be fostered by experience.

Additionally, active listening is a very useful technique when translating orally. It implies a conscious effort to hear not only the words but the complete message that is being said, in order to transform it into another language as clear as it can be.

Not falling into temptation

What is the dark temptation of professional interpreters? It is to give their own interpretation of what they are working on. This is not generally what is expected.

Especially when working with legal, medical or technical documents, the professional should be as literate as possible. A translator should stick to the words that are manifested rather than to it\’s own wishes and expectations.

Being invisible

Translators should think of themselves as links that bring people together. If there is already certain clearness between two interlocutors, the job is simply to bring messages from shore to shore. A professional will lessen interruptions, fluctuations, and modifications.

Once the channel is established, one can fly low. As long as the conversation flows, the interpreter can step out of the spotlight and go unnoticed.

Idioms, proverbs, expressions

Every language has its own phrases with particular meanings, some of which differ greatly from their word-to-word interpretation. Many of these expressions will render digital translators useless.

On the contrary, professional interpreters are true masters of language. They study these very specific idioms, and will know the precise words to bring these phrases to life in a new tongue. That is, if they don\’t already have a translation.

Remember: beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If you are seeking a professional that understands the uniqueness of each language, you\’ve come to the right place.

In EPLS we are professional interpreters and experts in Italian, Spanish, English, German, French, Arabic, Chinese. ¡Contact us and let us be your aid!

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