The 7 P’s that make us an Award-winning team, by Kate Ritchie

Last week, Chin Communications received two Awards – we won the Interpreting Excellence Award at the Australian Institute of Interpreters and Translators’ gala dinner. These prestigious biennial Excellence Awards recognise individuals, teams and organisations that have demonstrated best practice, dedication and outstanding contributions to translating and interpreting.

Click here to listen to our interview (in Mandarin) at SBS Radio Mandarin Program last week about this award.

A week later, we also received a ‘Highly Commended’ at the Melbourne3000+ Business Awards for our work assisting businesses with their international expansion through translation services.

Charles Qin and Kate Ritchie with Deputy Lord Mayor at Business3000Awards

As the winner of these prestigious prizes, I have been contemplating what are the Potpourri of qualities that made our interpreting award-worthy?  I came up with 7 P’s and I’d like to share them with you.

  • PASSION – to get on the Chin Team each of our translator/interpreters has to really love words and possess a mind that likes to soak up knowledge and idiom – well to ‘walk the talk’!
  • PRACTISE – a verb – doing! Plenty of opportunities to hone our art – training, interpreting in any forum – starting out at the bottom and practising, building up to larger events; being mentored by senior members; written translations help
  • PRIDE – Being proud in our occupation. It is important work. Value it, talk about it and always keep striving to improve.  Have your experience and expertise reflected on your professionally designed/printed business card.
  • PRESENCE – You can’t be the quiet interpreter in the corner to succeed in this job. Apart from having good posture and presentation at work, you also need personality and poise (gosh two more Ps). You need to take control – dictate the flow and the arrangements.
  • PROFESSIONALISM – This goes with Presence in terms of how you dress and conduct yourself. But more importantly, how you negotiate work, turn up on time with all your ‘tools’ and charge professional fees. If you don’t, you will undermine the occupation and diminish your value.
  • PREPARATION – It’s part of being Professional but we see it all the time. Interpreters who don’t take time to prepare for their work: turn up blind; think they can ‘wing’ it. They’ll never be an award-winner with this attitude.
  • PROACTIVE – Clients really value this approach – the small details that help their event or interaction run smoothly: cultural advice, suggestions re set up of room and seating, equipment, use of materials (translated of course!) – stuff you know about but they don’t.

Chin Communications Mandarin Interpreting Team accepts Award

So there you have it. Put some of these P’s into your portfolio and see how it can transform you into a polished professional and potentially an award winner.

Chin Communications is a specialist Chinese Translating and Interpreting company based in Melbourne, last year celebrating 20 years in business. Chin is widely regarded as Australia’s leading specialist Chinese Translation service with clients including presidents and prime ministers, and providing ongoing translation, interpreting and cultural advisory services to large and small businesses as well as governments at all levels seeking to advance their success in China.