The deadly Coronavirus is sweeping across the world, leaving some towns with empty streets, closed schools, and shuttered shopfronts.
It is also wreaking havoc in the conference interpreting industry. Cancellations are pouring through because, understandably, nobody wants to put themselves at risk.
In spite of all the negative, I try to see opportunity in every crisis. To keep your spirits up, I’ve put together five ways translators and interpreters can make the most out of the Coronavirus crisis.
Take a look and see if you can apply any of these to your own life/work schedule:
1. Unite with organisations and offer your help
Now is your time to do a good deed. Do good and feel good by collaborating with organisations working to stop Coronavirus and offer them exceptionally lowered translation or interpreting rates with a yearly framework agreement.
2. Show solidarity to your colleagues and friends coming from nations affected by the virus
In this industry, we tend to have contacts all over the world. Send a thoughtful email to your colleagues and friends to show that you’re thinking of them, and offer to help them with anything they need. They’ll really appreciate your effort!
3. Reflect on your own business
No interpreter likes a cancellation, but in the case that your interpreting project does get halted or cancelled, think of it as an opportunity to examine your own business, rather than panic over the incident. It could be the free gap you need to do that 2019 business review you’ve been meaning to do since early January. You could also use the time to write thank you cards for your loyal customers.
4. Embrace Remote Simultaneous Interpreting (RSI)
RSI is the safest method of interpreting that doesn’t involve leaving your home – so you don’t have to lose work at all. Whilst you’re not working, use the time productively to update your CV, prepare a pitch, pick up the phone to call old clients, or take a free course to sharpen your skills. Alternatively, hit the gym or enroll in a yoga class – a healthy body makes a healthy mind.
5. Stay optimistic
Yesterday I received cancellations but also two confirmations and an option. It is important that you stay positive during this crisis and that includes creating your own opportunities in addition to embracing ones that come along.
So tell me, how have you been affected by Coronavirus as a translator or interpreter? And are you finding ways to stay proactive through the crisis?
Share your thoughts!