5 Things you Need to Know about Living Abroad

5 Things you Need to Know about Living Abroad

Your average secondary school French teacher, however inspirational when armed with a rainbow of board pens and with the dulcet tones of our friends from Encore Tricolore as background noise, cannot teach you everything you need to know ahead of your ventures abroad.

As part of my French and German degree (class of 2008), I underwent a period of time in the respective countries. During the fifteen months that I split between Tübingen, Tergnier and Munich, I kept a list of the peculiarities I discovered on an almost daily basis. Here is a small sample… Read more

Fundraising for Nepal

Fundraising for Nepal

After the terrible news of two devastating earthquakes striking Nepal, the K International team are pulling together to raise funds for the relief effort.  One of our lead project managers, Sajeda Al-Nashash, has been instrumental in organising a week long food fair. Members of the team have been supplying a different set of culinary creations each day to collect for the appeal. Thanks to the folks here at K, we’ve had a great variety of gourmet morsels including smoothies, samosas, exotic salads, omelettes, quiche, cake, cookies and brownies to name only a few.

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Get Lost in Translation

Get Lost in Translation

This blog post has been adapted from a presentation I gave this week to the Key Account Management Club at Cranfield School of Management. I spoke about the importance of professional translation in relation to communication and what can happen when it all goes wrong.

It was for an ‘after dinner’ speech, so I wanted to make it as informal / funny as possible while still communicating the key message. This isn’t a transcript of what I said but it’s close enough and is in the same style as the original talk.

Hello and Good Evening

For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Richard Brooks. I graduated from Cranfield 10 years ago (MBA class of 2005) and have been working on/at K International, a UK translation provider, ever since. Initially in a general management position, then after leading a management buyout 2 years ago, I am now the Chief Exec of the organisation.

Whenever I meet new people (very fortunate that I have that opportunity regularly), I always seemed to be asked the same questions. So being as we’re all friends (or will be soon), let me cover these questions quickly and get them out of the way. Read more

SME Guide to International Expansion

Guide for Small Businesses Expanding Internationally

Image from IM Creator

Expanding internationally is often seen as the Holy Grail for successful businesses. After all, from Amazon to Ikea, virtually all of the biggest companies in the world operate on a global level. Potential benefits include increased revenue, sustainable long-term growth and a wider range of customers.

But before you take this leap of faith, are you and your small business ready? Expanding into international markets is easier said than done and in-depth research and considered execution is essential. Get it wrong and your business will suffer. But get it right and you can reap a multitude of rewards. Read more

K International at Retail Week Live

Localisation at Retail Week Live 2015

24th Retail Week Live – The best yet?

Leading retailers are gearing up for an exciting spring in the English Capital this year. The Hilton London Metropole will be the place to be on March the 11th and 12th as the venue plays host to the renowned exhibition, Retail Week Live, now in its 24th year.  I’m really looking forward to hearing from the industry’s top experts, and of course getting to meet up with a whole host of likeminded driven business leaders.

This year looks set to be a giant year for the exhibition, with more than 1000 attendees expected from all over the world. There should be a good mix of start-ups and elite retailers to give us all some good insights into what’s in store for the future of the retail industry. There are a number of presentations lined up focused on four key themes, The Consumer, The Brand, Retail Strategy and Innovation. I’ve selected a few of the key themes and presentations that I’m most looking forward to below. Read more

Translation Value

Translation: Price is what you pay, Value is what you get

Picture the scene, it’s the weekend, the sun is shining, not a cloud in the sky, a perfect day for a leisurely drive. About an hour into your jaunt around the local country roads, you notice a strange clunking sound coming from under the bonnet. It looks like a trip to the garage is in order. Once you get home you call the guy (or girl) you always call when your car needs attention. You drop it off at the garage and wait for the workshop to call, what are the first three things you want to learn from that call?… Most people would likely answer along the lines of “can they fix it, what is it going to cost and how long is it going to take”, probably in that order.

Now you are probably wondering what going for a drive and suffering an impending breakdown has to do with anything, well I’ll get to that. About a year ago I was talking to a chap in a pub, the best stories always start with that line right? His name is Dave, you wouldn’t say he was anything out of the ordinary, casually dressed, glasses, drives a van, all very run of the mill, he wouldn’t mind me saying that, he’d probably agree. Anyway, I sat at the bar waiting for my friends to finally show up and just happened to strike up a conversation with him. He told me about how he works in a garage and has done probably longer than I’ve been alive, another classic line from the book of pub stories huh. Dave’s customers go through exactly the same ritual as I had you imagine at the beginning, but when it comes to that phone call, his customers have slightly different expectations. Read more

the top 3 apps for travellers

Top 3 Language Translation Traveller Apps

In today’s digitally connected age we are fortunate to have connectivity and access to our smart phone/tablet of choice virtually everywhere we travel. Regardless of location, in most instances we will be able to utilise our smart phones and tablets in some capacity. One of the advantages of this new era in technology is that the savvy traveller can now take advantage of the many wonderful applications designed to enhance any type of trip. When it comes to traveling to new lands it is always handy to have easy to use, informative and fast language translation tools at your fingertips.

As technology tears down cultural boundaries it is now becoming much easier to communicate across borders. Smart phones and tablets are now more then ever before allowing for language barriers to be broken in ways we never once imagined. If you’re like me and seem to not be able to go anywhere without your personal electronic devices then this is a great opportunity to review some of top language translation applications currently available.

Obviously (and I’m not just saying this because I’m biased) none of these will replace or do the same job as a professional translator or interpreter. But if you need to get by and/or want to have some fun while you’re on your travels these will help. So here you go… 3 language translation apps for the modern traveller. Read more

Top 5 Language Careers

Top 5 Careers For Language Lovers

Since the dawn of time language has been fundamental to the way we interact with one another. When cultures expanded and populations grew, foreign languages were born out of a necessity for local, centralised communication. As time passed and humans became more abundant and advanced, so too did languages. While some languages have died and some are yet to be born, the demand for foreign language skills is only expanding in the modern era.

When contemplating foreign language related careers, the first choices we think of are most likely that of a translator, interpreter, foreign language teacher or even CEO of a Language Services Company :), but these jobs only scratch the surface of what you can achieve. Of course any one of these professions is a great option for a language lover, but what if you wanted to cultivate your passion for language doing something a bit more unique or intriguing?

These days talented linguists are not limited to such narrow career paths, and they often have interests beyond just learning, teaching and speaking new languages. Studying languages is known to develop core competencies that appeal to almost every type of professional field giving linguaphiles a plethora of valuable career opportunities that they may have never thought of. Read more

Translation of Clinical Trials

Translation for Clinical Trials

Over the past decade, clinical trials for new drugs, treatments and medical devices have increasingly been conducted in countries overseas. Emerging markets offer attractive benefits to sponsors, including significant cost reductions, easier recruitment and faster study completion. Top countries for outsourcing clinical research include India, China and Russia.

The need for quality medical translation grows as more clinical trials are conducted in emerging nations. Clinical research accounts for a significant percentage of the cost of bringing a new drug to market, but poor-quality translation during the trial period can incur even more significant costs. Put simply, the wrong translation provider can compromise an entire study.  Read more