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Written by Javier Arizpe

September 23, 2020

Qualities of a good translator


The translator career requires a combination of two important aspects: passion and curiosity. Passion is necessary to perform and present each work in the best possible way, whether if it is a translation or interpretation. Curiosity is fundamental because in most cases, this profession requires knowing the social, cultural, scientific, political, and economic context according to the topic.

A translator needs to be open-minded, an eager learner and a researcher in order to ensure impeccable translations; because the terminology is not static and invariable, it may change depending on the context of the text and evolves with new trends. Nowadays, globalization has brought new words to adopted and even one lexicon has been imposed on another.



Challenges a translator faces

When the translator deals with a translation about a universal or popular culture topic, everything seems to be easy; however, when dealing with more specialized areas like science or technology, the level of difficulty increases.

Now, the accelerated development of new products and the improvement on big science and technology companies’ processes, as well as the need for each work instruction to be almost immediately and globally available, requires a translator who constantly improves their knowledge.

Literary translation might seem “easier” because today’s writers try to use a language that most people can understand; but sometimes translators have to take up the translation of classic books new editions because their translations are now obsolete. This not because the translations were deficient, but because the current reader uses and understands a different vocabulary.

There are other type of challenges in literary translation, such as puns that can sometimes arise from trends, social media influencers and new tendencies, or on the other hand, are too old and need to be adapted to the current public so they can be understood.

So, the curiosity and enthusiasm to learn new terminology and adapt it to today’s world, impacts the translations quality in a positive way.


Passion and enthusiasm for work

Having a positive attitude brings benefits to you personally, as well as in your working environment and client searching. And surely, you can agree with the fact that is satisfying to surround yourself with people who make you see life with optimism and enthusiasm. It’s the same at work.

A translator who is passionate about his work is probably on the right path to achieve professional success.


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