Translation, a part of Localization is a technical job and requires a professional with requisite skills to execute the responsibilities. A professional translator is well equipped with the goods and bad of translation. Professionals comprise the much-needed training and skills that add value to the task and facilitate its smooth execution. Some of the key skills that a translator must necessarily possess include strong command over the language & syntax, phrasing and history of words. These skills aid them in translating effectively and in line with their intended meaning. An experienced translator is aware of the tricks and nuances of translation. However, new entrants and beginners end up making a few mistakes.
Here’s a look at some of the most common mistakes, which translators make and tips to rectify them. These include:
1. Translation in Verbatim
One of the most common translation mistake is translating the text word-by-word or in its verbatim form. Translators need to learn the art of translating texts, retain the intended meaning of the converted text however, by interpreting it in the right context in the translation-language. Every language is guided by its own set of rules and syntaxes. Translators should pro-actively engage in learning the guidelines of the new-language to gain valuable insights about it in cultural, legal and technical aspects. One can’t simply justify the word-to-word translation from English into Arabic as both these languages have different syntaxes. In the best of interests, using a dictionary to understand the true meaning of the words serves the purpose.
2. Wrong Words at Wrong Places
New/Beginner translators end up using the wrong word in the wrong place and context. Translation is a challenging task more so when there are some words, which can’t be translated in the other language. Words and phrases like Netilat Yadayim Shacharit and Holy Grail can’t be translated into any other language. These words represent religious and cultural process and hence, they can’t be interpreted in any other religious context. Yet another challenge that translators face is to distinguish between a feminine and a masculine noun. Some words that are masculine in a particular language are considered as feminine in the other language. Moon, for example, is masculine in Hindi but feminine in Spanish.
3. Style Error
Translators who are new to the world of translation may be unaware about a lot of rules followed in the industry. Thus they end up making style errors in the text. Since, they are not familiar with the target language they interpret the document as per their understanding and not in accordance to the style guidelines of the same. Style errors alter the meaning and context of the translated texts, which also fails to convey the intended message. Every words needs to be translated on the right tone so that it comes across in the right context and is able to say what was meant to be!
4. Undue Magnification of Meaning
Sometimes the over zealousness of new translators spills over to their work and hence, they end up exaggerating the meaning of words in the translated texts. This is caused by lack of experience. Keeping their excitement under check is a must. The best and most effective way to translate sans the exaggeration is to stick to technical words and complex terminologies without going overboard. Sometimes keeping it simple is the best!
5. Poor Communication Skills
New translators may sometimes not be fluent with their communication skills due to, which they end up translating poorly. In the business of Localization, communication holds the key to your success and acts like a bridge between clients and customers. Translators should be fluent with their communication skills to engage the clients in an effective conversation across different stages of translation. If your communication is strong, there is little chance of misunderstanding. It also helps in boosting business prospects and enhancing profits.
Thus, it is important to sensitize the new or first-time translators about the world of translation and train them to handle their responsibilities within the set guidelines!