Would you like to be an interpreter?

Choosing a profession is a really important step in the life of every grown-up person. The choice will influence every single day of your future life, so you should pay it enough attention and make it right. Some students know what they are going to do for a living after leaving school but for others it’s difficult to give a definite answer about their future profession. We get to know about a wide range of professions from magazines and advertisements and then we make either our own choice or follow our parents’ advice as they are also concerned about our future.

When choosing a career one should take into consideration all the possibilities that it might provide, explore the job market from every angle, evaluate our own abilities and talents.

As for me, since my childhood I’ve known I want to be an interpreter. My choice is closely connected with the importance of foreign languages and cultures which is growing nowadays.  It’s an official language in a vast number of countries. Besides, it’s the language of international aviation, sports, medicine, the language of science and technology, trade, cultural and business relations. Nowadays, knowledge of a foreign language without doubt guarantees higher salary and faster promotion track.  Translator’s occupation has been believed to be one of the most prestigious and needed professions since ancient times.

But, every coin has two sides and translator’s job has its own weak points which, unfortunately, become more important every day. So, let’s take a look at pros and cons of this respectable and rewarding profession. Of course, let’s start with positive aspects.

First and foremost, it broadens prospects. Interpreters can travel around the world almost free of charge. Moreover, they discover a lot of new information for themselves concerning cultural aspects and obtaining a huge communication experience that provides the opportunities for the better understanding of the world. Furthermore, It allows to learn new and interesting things from different spheres of life because an interpreter deals with different science branches such as nuclear physics or molecular biology. In addition, It brings a lot of new acquaintances and provides the opportunities to be well-connected with the whole world.

On the other hand, I’m quite aware that the job of an interpreter isn’t an easy one. It is a great challenge to be an interpreter. You have to be very communicative and responsible, experienced and well-qualified. Moreover, be prepared to work long hours and move around a lot. Unfortunately, sometimes interpreters are treated as service staff. It is connected with the limited mind of some people that are not able to understand that to translate from one language into another is a hard work.

Taking everything into deep consideration, I’d like to point that, regardless the negative sides of the profession of an interpreter, the positive moments outweigh here.  One more important fact is worth mentioning, this profession proves the famous proverb “as many languages you know as many times you are a man”.

The Pros and Cons of Being a Professional Interpreter

A professional interpreter’s job is to act as a translator between two people, which will require not only extensive knowledge concerning the language of both people but also the ability to translate quickly and correctly. Before deciding that this is the job for you, it’s a good idea to compare the pros and cons of the job. The following are the pros and cons of being a professional intepreter.

The Pros

There are many benefits to becoming a professional interpreter, some of which include the following:

  • There’s a big demand for the position – The world is growing smaller due to globalization, which means more and more companies are conducting business overseas and have a need for good interpreters. This means that there should be a lot of opportunities to get a well-paid job.
  • There’s a lot of room for growth – If a company hires you as a freelancer or for very basic translation services and you do a great job, it won’t go unnoticed. Companies value good interpreters and will promote you quickly.
  • The more languages you know, the more potential you’ll have – At the very least, you have to be fluent in two languages. However, if you are fluent in more than two languages, then you have a big advantage over other translators and interpreters. Many businesses are willing to pay more for an interpreter that is fluent in multiple languages because this way they don’t have to hire multiple interpreters.
  • You’ll improve your language skills – Even if you are fluent, you’ll get even better at the languages you’re translating, whether it’s on the page or in real time between two parties.
  • Job flexibility – Although you can work for a company, you can also choose to work as a freelancer, which will allow you to make your own schedule.

The Cons

The following are some of the drawbacks related to the job of a professional interpreter:

  • There’s no room for error – You have to be completely fluent – even the smallest mistake can chance the meaning of a sentence from one language to the next. This means that you not only have to have an understanding of grammar and vocabulary but also idioms and cultural connotations. Sometimes, different languages make use of words that simply don’t exist in another language, and you’ll have to find a way around that.
  • The field can be competitive – Because of the job flexibility, the potential for high pay,  the potential for quick career growth and the demand for professional interpreters in general, the interpreter and translation field can be very competitive and will only become more and more competitive in the future.
  • It can be a lonely job – Even when you are translating a conversation between two parties, you won’t have an emotional connection with either one. And if you’re doing translation work, then you’ll be all on your own. This can make being a professional interpreter an isolating job. While this isn’t a problem for some people, others may require a social aspect to their work.