Reflecting on 2022, highlights and memorable moments
At this time of year, I always like to take time to reflect and learn from my experiences of 2022.
It has been an interesting year – and a sad one in many ways too – with the invasion of Ukraine and the death of Queen Elizabeth II. The surge in inflation and accompanying cost of living crisis has also made 2022 a very hard year for many people. But the continued success of the vaccine roll-out and the victory of the Lionesses in the Euros were high points which I won’t forget!
Workwise, this year has seen a shift back towards in-person attendance at conferences, which applies to interpreters too. Over the past few months, I have only been requested to interpret in-person and I would suggest that just 5% of my work is now remote.
As we approach the end of the year, I wanted to reflect on the many work highs that this year has brought – from resuming in-person conferences, to BAFTA-level interpretation, it really has been a year of memorable moments!
So, without further ado, let’s have a look at my business highlights of 2022.
It was a great start to the year for Italy, being named The Economist’s Country of the Year 2021. The competent leadership of Prime Minister, Mario Draghi, and the country’s excellent Covid-19 vaccination rates were praised by the publication. It is always heartwarming to see Italy praised in the press.
January also saw the 2022 Italian presidential election, which resulted in incumbent president Sergio Mattarella being confirmed for a second term.
The TerpSummit, which in 2022 took the format of a three-day online conference, was another brilliant success. Working in a highly specialised field can sometimes feel quite isolating, so being able to meet (at this time, virtually) with people in the same industry, and share our work highs and lows was unbelievably useful.
My eyes were truly opened to numerous ways to increase my LinkedIn profile and improve my post recognition. Utilising some brilliant skills from Mike Roberts, I have increased my profile significantly on social media and some of my posts have had an extraordinary number of views which was both unexpected and exciting!
It was earlier this year that I came across the superbly knowledgeable John Espirian on LinkedIn who imparted the incredibly useful top tips of adding your LinkedIn QR code to your CV and also having your QR code to hand on your phone lock screen during networking events as a super quick and easy way to connect with people without any faff. Thanks John, this really is such a clever and easy idea and has come in so handy for me this year!
My first in-person networking event of 2022 took place on 9th February. The Global Network UK Business Networking Granaio was in Piccadilly, and hosted by the brilliant UK Confederation by Confassociazioni, of which I am a member. It was the first real-life networking event that had been able to take place for some time, and being in a busy room with many other people felt slightly strange but also wonderful. It really was so good to be able to get back to normal and resume regular ways of working.
It was in March that I found I had a peak of certified translation requests, to which I attributed to the changes in regulations following Brexit.
Working with the Italian Trade Agency at their press and industry conference promoting the forthcoming 42 MCE Mostra Convegno EXPOCOMFORT 2022 organised by RX Global was a joy. I provided simultaneous Italian to English interpretation enabling the interpretation to happen in real-time, letting events run as if all attendees spoke the same language.
It was in March that I had a very memorable interpreting assignment, working for a family whose daughter had found herself in trouble at school after infringing the college policies. I was asked to attend a very formal meeting with the family and the Master and, after some negotiations, “Rosa” (the alias we gave her) returned to the college. The family were delighted and their feedback to me was a joy:
“Thank you from the bottom of my heart, there is no amount of money that can compensate your warm and exceptional performance today – you acted as if Rosa was your daughter and I will always be grateful to you!”
I was delighted to work again with the IT industry, specifically for an American manufacturer training its staff in SAP software. On this occasion I interpreted for a mixture of small group training sessions and 1:1 training.
I was also contacted by a new client whose interpreter had let them down at the last minute. We were called upon at the eleventh hour to step in and assist with a business meeting for which interpretation services were required. I always try to make myself available for last minute enquiries (although obviously the more notice I have the better!).
I was uplifted to receive an unprecedented number of requests for in-person interpreting work in Europe. So, I dusted off my passport for business travel, and welcomed some long overdue trips on the Eurostar and short haul flights to some of my favourite destinations. With travel to Malta, Brussels, Paris and Dublin – this was the most travel I had undertaken since the pandemic. It was a brilliant – and tangible – sign of life returning to normal!
I enjoyed sharing my typical day in “A day in the life of the interpreter”, a blog which gained a lot of interest! How does my typical day compare to yours I wonder?
June included a memorable visit to Dublin for a European Works Council (EWC) meeting. It was on this visit that I was delighted that, after two years of talking with new colleagues on Zoom, I was finally able to meet with colleagues in person and put real faces to their names!
I remember this Dublin visit like it was yesterday; it really was something rather special. Alongside work we were treated to a trip to Slane Castle for a tour and a wonderful dinner, hosted by the owner of the castle, Alex Conyngham, and greeted with champagne and canapes. I recall fondly the sun setting on the castle: the sight was truly spectacular!
June unexpectedly brought another fabulous assignment which I will remember for a lifetime. I was delighted to be invited by BAFTA to interpret an interview with the incredible Italian director and filmwriter, Giuseppe Tornatore. Perhaps most well-known for his Oscar winning movie, Cinema Paradiso, this interview was to talk about his new movie on the life of composer Ennio Morricone.
What an experience! I will keep the recording forever – such a wonderful memento and a super opportunity. I was also delighted to receive superb feedback from the director Ian, which put a smile on my face:
“It was a pleasure meeting you too. No feedback beyond my thinking you did a sterling job. I am always amazed at the skill in translating live. Not an easy task. I especially liked your bringing Giuseppe’s humour through in your conversation.”
Travel was certainly fully on the agenda from July, where I spent the month moving between London, Slovenia and Brussels where I interpreted for a client in the defence industry at the European Parliament.
There was a noticeable surge in requests for interpretative services from project managers in dispute resolution, arbitration and other legal cases. As the pandemic eased, legal hearings resumed and the backlog started to clear.
Another high point of the month was celebrating one hundred, five-star reviews on Google! I am still absolutely delighted to have such a superb rating and wanted to say thank you so much to all of you who have written reviews for me. It is a joy to read your feedback and know that the work I have provided has been of an excellent standard.
If you follow me on Instagram, you may remember a reel I published where I was dashing to an eleventh-hour extraordinary meeting in Geneva. I wanted to take a moment to log the event at the time as it’s something which, in over twenty years of interpreting, has never happened to me before! It still makes me laugh thinking about it now! If you haven’t seen it before, watch it here, it will make you smile!
I was so fortunate to spend the month of August in Italy visiting family in Sicily and friends in Rome. After the stress of A-levels, increased business travel and a hectic workload (for which I am always grateful!) the down time was so needed.
It was a very special summer, spent creating memories with all my extended family and my lovely daughters, shortly before my older daughter moved to Paris to study at university.
It was an honour and a thrill to work again with the wonderful Christian Dior team in Manchester for another artisan event, similar to the one that I worked at in New Bond Street last year. The intricacies and skill that go into creating a Christian Dior handbag are immense, the craftsmanship is truly out of this world. I adored this event; working in the fashion and luxury goods arena is a joy.
One prevalent topic for 2022 in the interpreting industry was the aspect of safety – particularly related to hearing – for interpreters. The use of inadequate equipment and the potential health risks this can cause were high on many interpreters’ agendas. In October, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) published their 2022 Simultaneous Interpreting Delivery Platforms: Requirements and Recommendations, replacing the 2020 specifications. It was heartening to see that amongst the new recommendations, there was emphasis placed on providing safe equipment of suitable quality, which was a sure signal that the concerns of the interpreting community had been taken seriously.
I shared with my readers a few top tips this month following some training sessions I had undertaken with a top interpreter from the European Parliament. Work this month took me to Warwickshire for an assignment in the automotive industry, Lisbon for a medical conference and remote work (from my London office) on rater training on clinical trials, which is a rather niche area of the medical industry, and is used to improve the consistency of subjective data.
This was a varied month, with assignments in Brussels and Paris for European Works Council meetings and a great opportunity working with a new financial services client in London.
I also spent a wonderful week in Zurich which was a brilliant mix of work and pleasure, I even managed to squeeze in a hair appointment with my favourite hairdresser! Travelling for business can be stressful, but it can equally be invigorating, and the time I spent in Zurich was just perfect. Isn’t it great when work can be so fulfilling?
So, we have reached the end of the year, and after a busy month of business travel in November I tucked my passport safely away for a few weeks to carry out some assignments in the UK and enable me to catch up a little.
What a year it has been, it’s truly been a special time and I am so excited to see what is awaiting me in 2023!
I would love to hear your high points of the year – do drop me an email to let me know, it is always a pleasure to read your responses.
I am so grateful for trusting me with your business this year, and for your continued support. I wish you, your families and loved ones a wonderful festive season, and a successful and prosperous new year.
May the next twelve months be filled with even more opportunities for us to ideate, inspire, and innovate – and continue making an impact through meaningful work.
All the very best wishes for the New Year and see you in 2023!
I’m so excited to work with you all and continue building bridges between you and the rest of the world! ❤️