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Written by Montserrat González

Montserrat is a professional translator who likes to read and write fictional stories. There's nothing she enjoys more than spending time with her friends and family.

September 10, 2019

Benefits and disadvantages of multi-tasking

On the translation field, “multi-tasking” or “multi-task” is a very important quality. But, is this really a benefit? Can our brain really make more than one thing at once? The following article shows some of the benefits and disadvantages of multi-tasking.

But first of all…


What is multi-task?

The term “multi-tasking” means “multi-task“, and talking about people, this is the ability which consists on doing different tasks at the same time” This concept was mainly developed inside the informatics area, because computers can run more than one application or program at a time.

Nowadays, computers are designed for multi-tasking, but for humans. But this has showed inefficiency in some cases. Being able to do more than one thing at a time can be awesome, but if you do not know how to master it with agility, it can end up being a complete mess. Some of the benefits and disadvantages of multi-tasking inside the translation field are listed below.



  • Someone that owns this ability can save a lot of time when working with different things at the same time. If the translator works for a company, it would be a benefit for the organization that the translator get his/her responsibilities done on time, always caring the quality of his/her translations.
  • When doing different things at once, the multi-tasking translator can assume more responsibilities and solve any difficulties.
  • If this ability is well executed, the translator can assume the responsibility of more quantity of job, generating a good performance without forgetting about quality.
  • The work environment of a translator is usually chaotic due to job irregularities, one day you can be resting on your bed and the other you are running out of time. But if the translator is multi-tasking, he/she can perform inside that environment without neglecting the job quality.



  • Some people cannot focus on just one task because they are doing more than one at the same time. And if the translator gets distracted, his/her job lost “quality” just for wanting to cover more “quantity”. That is why sometimes multi-tasking is a waste of time.
  • Stress is the translator’s best friend, and most of the time they are overwhelmed with all-types of job. If this ability is not well executed, the translator would never get the expected results.
  • Studies have showed that multi-tasking can be harmful for the memory and health. For a translator, this can be risky because they are under pressure most of the time.
  • A study made by the London University, showed that having the ability of multi-tasking reduces the IQ of an individual. Harvard Medical School also showed a negative posture regarding doing different things at the same time.

Although the good news are that they seem to exist some exceptions. David Strayer, a psychology professor of the Utah University, made a study in which he shared that at least 2% of the population can do more than one task at once without affecting their performance. Not everything is bad news!

And, you consider yourself multi-tasking?

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