Regular readers of my blog will be aware that I’m passionate about networking and attending industry events as a means of promoting translator awareness and self-confidence. Mixing with other translators, exchanging ideas and discussing working practices and the latest technology is essential to keep you fresh, motivated and on the ball. However, these events usually come at a cost, admittedly tax-deductible, which can run into several hundred pounds for major conferences or training courses. Money well spent in my opinion, but I fully understand that colleagues just starting out may struggle to justify the expense….
So when an e-mail drops into your inbox, offering a free all-day workshop with networking opportunities over a delicious lunch and coffee/tea breaks, and the option to experience new technology, why would we even hesitate?
I know I did when I first received my invitation to the SDL Roadshow in London earlier this year. Oh no, I thought, it’s going to be all hard-selling, corporate-talking, Trados-is-the-only-way blurb. I already have SDL Trados Studio, why would I bother? Then, the more I thought about it, it occurred to me that I had never really had any formal training in SDL Trados Studio apart from a couple of webinars in the early days and an (excellent) introduction to Studio 2014 organised by the North West Translators’ Network last year. And the roadshows are free, lunch, coffee & frequent nibbles included. The venue was in walking distance of my London rail terminus, so only an hour or so from home. And yes, I was thinking about upgrading to 2015, so it could be a great chance to ask questions and find out what all the fuss was about.
My first SDL Roadshow…
I duly registered and trotted up to the swanky Sofitel St James Hotel, just off Pall Mall, last May. The hotel is a prestigious 5* affair, so excellent facilities and extremely convenient for me. The Trados staff couldn’t have been more helpful on arrival and, to my surprise, I bumped straight into a couple of clients, closely followed by colleagues I’d met at other networking or work events.
The day got better and better: I’d deliberately missed the introductory session for complete beginners to SDL Trados Studio, but I should imagine it would be well worth attending for anyone considering joining the CAT tool fray for the first time. Subsequent presentations were interesting, relevant and in some cases downright amusing, but it was the question & answer session that I found the most useful: the opportunity to ask questions right at the horse’s mouth, so to speak, is invaluable. You can search manuals and online help guides until you’re blue in the face, but there’s no substitute for a hands-on, face-to-face session with the experts.
So what are you waiting for?
The next London Roadshow is on 22 October and there are others across Europe (and further afield) throughout autumn. Studio 2015 has now launched and whilst I haven’t taken the plunge yet, I certainly intend to do so soon and the roadshow will allow me to chat to clients and colleagues about the new program and discuss the finer points.
I had a thoroughly enjoyable and worthwhile day last time, meeting clients in person for the first time, renewing my acquaintance with others and making plenty of new contacts too. You can’t beat direct networking as a means of self-promotion, and as such, this was a pretty effortless way of going about it and furthering your technical knowledge at the same time. See you there?
Are you looking to attend an SDL Roadshow? Register here.
Read more from Claire Cox on her blog here.