Interpreters for conferences and courtrooms have different set of skills and personalities. The social nature of each arena is different and so are the sets of words they’ll need to use. The same is true of interpreters providing escort services, public services, health care, and those working with the media.
Interpreters of speakers at conferences, conventions, seminars, and meetings are primed to stand or sit unobtrusively next to a foreign language speaker and use a mike to interpret that person’s political or business speech to an audience, other panel members, or meeting attendees. They are never the show and remain somewhat in the background.
This kind of interpreter needs to know the law thoroughly, so they can interpret legal terms accurately. They help jurists understand the statements of foreign speaking witnesses, and help the witnesses understand the questioning of lawyers. They need to remain unmoved, even when witnesses become emotional.
A bodyguard, chaperone, or evening companion are invaluable when they can quietly interpret what’s going on around them in a foreign country. That way a visitor understands surrounding activities and is ready for any kind of spontaneous interaction. They will dress similarly to their client, so they don’t stand out – except in the case of bodyguards, who may need to carry weapons.
Public services are directed toward low income or otherwise disadvantaged people, many of whom are immigrants speaking the language of their birth. These interpreters need to know how to simplify complex terms, listen compassionately, and speak with clarity. Many public services interpreters staff hotline phones and should be comfortable soothing frightened callers.
Health care interpreters help patients fill out hospital and insurance forms, share symptoms with doctors and nurses, and interpret medical communications back to the patient. They need to know medical terms and be comfortable working around disease and pain.
Media interpreters are usually connected to talk shows or news stories. They are alert, canny, and photogenic. They interpret conversations between host and guests, or the comments of passersby when reporting a crisis in another country. They need to feel comfortable being filmed. These interpreters will dress nicely and be made up behind the set before filming.
Dialog One provides interpreters of all shapes and sizes, speaking any two or three of 150 plus languages. They each specialize in one or more of the interpretation arenas above, in addition to their own industry specialties.