Iwan Davies is a French and German to English translator and localiser, and one half of the crack team at Translutions Limited. In addition to almost 15 years as a professional translator, Iwan has extensive experience in computer programming, including working with complex file formats and characters conversions. He is also webmaster of the ITI Scottish Network, and is working away behind the scenes as part of the Conference Committee. On Sunday 17th May, he will be part of a panel discussion called Where to draw the line?.
Check out the rest of the ITI Conference programme here.
1. In two sentences, please describe what you’ll be talking about at the conference, and what translation and interpreting (T&I) professionals will gain from hearing it.
I’ll be participating in a Panel Discussion entitled “Where to draw the line”. We want to redefine the idea of customer service for translators, both freelance and in translation companies – highlighting how we can add value rather than simply feel exploited.
2. If you could wave a magic wand and change one thing to make your workplace more sustainable, what would you do?
I’d love to install solar panels on the roof of the house to generate power. If that sounds unlikely to work in Scotland, then I’ll have to investigate the wind turbine route instead! Hope the neighbours don’t mind!
3. Which business leader, politician or public figure do you most respect?
I was at a meeting of my daughters’ school Parent Council this evening, and as always our local councillors were present. These are the people who give up a massive amount of time and can really help local communities. There’s no hiding place on a local council, and we should celebrate grass-roots politicians a lot more than we do.
4. To what degree do you feel involved in and supported by your professional community, and why?
When you work for yourself, it’s easy to develop a feeling of isolation, so I’ve always tried to get as involved as possible in ITI, which I consider to be my natural habitat as a freelance translator. Both at regional level and at national level, I’ve come to value the support that ITI members provide each other, whether in terms of passing on work or simply gathering around the virtual watercooler.
5. Freeform – here’s where you are free to riff on anyone or anything, good or bad, or just share a pearl of wisdom.
I’m generally a glass-half-full kind of person, and am willing to give most things and people a chance. I strongly believe in encouraging others to have faith in what they can do, whether in relation to people starting out in business as translators or in relation to getting parents more involved in their children’s education – another passion of mine. Much of the time we walk around with our eyes shut, blind to our own skills and attributes as well as to those of others. I want to help people discover their potential, and in doing so uncover more of my own!
Thank you very much for your time, Iwan. I know it must be scarce as the conference looms ever closer!