Posted by: sbilingual | July 3, 2012

Business Conference Interpreting

How often have you been involved in a business meeting where some of the participants do not speak English? How do you overcome this problem? Perhaps you will seek the services of a simultaneous interpreter. It is important however, to ensure that you understand the difference between a simultaneous interpreter and a consecutive interpreter. The former, involves headphones or an ear piece so that the listener can hear the interpreter and the business conference is in progress. The latter, will involve stopping the business conference at intervals in order to interpret. This of course will slow down the business conference, prolong the pace and cause some disruption and will mean that the meeting is disjointed.

When approaching different companies who provide conference interpreting it is essential to consider the following: the nature of the business for which the interpreter is required; what languages will be required to be interpreted, and clearly, here it is essential to remember there may be several languages and therefore the need for several interpreters; how many people will be present at the business conference.

When looking for interpreters it is advisable to seek out a company that specialises in conference interpreting. Your business will benefit from the expertise. A good company providing the conference interpreting will want to question you about your specific needs and requirements, so give them as much information as you can.

It is further advisable, to ensure that the company provide you with experienced conference interpreters who have a proven record in that area. Good people skills are essential in this field of work.

You will need to consider the specialised expertise of a conference interpreter, do they have medical knowledge if it is a business conference relating to medical matters. Do they have specialised knowledge of the nature of your business conference. Many subject areas have their own terms and language which must be fully understood by the interpreter.

When seeking business conference interpreters do not try to keep the cost down by engaging a single interpreter. You will find that most companies providing conference interpreters have people working either in pairs or in teams for each language, particularly in cases of high profile meetings involving a stress factor.

It is essential to remember how much money has been invested into your conference. You owe it to them therefore, notwithstanding your own reputation, to provide the best service you can; to make it a pleasant experience for the participants who will wish to return to your business.

Always ensure to compare prices from company to company and don’t just go for the first one to offer a lower cost. As the saying goes, you get what you pay for and where business conferencing and interpreting is concerned, good service will be money well invested.

To find out how Bilingual Resources Group can support your interpretation, translation and bilingual staffing needs, please call 504-253-0364 or visit


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