Achieving excellence in interpreting – Part 2: Creating a culture
Businesses today face many challenges, from universal commercial concerns such as managing costs and winning new clients, to considerations that are unique to certain industries.
One goal that many organisations share is to create a truly engaged, highly productive workforce, comprised of employees who are willing to go above and beyond to deliver the best possible results for their clients.
But what is the most effective way to go about this? At Language Connect, one of our priorities has been to build a positive, rewarding working culture, which we believe has a vital role to play in the delivery of a high-quality service, particularly in our interpreting business.
Strong working culture and how it supports good interpreting
Promoting a strong working culture is seen as an important part of how Language Connect operates, so there are various processes in place to support this goal.
Firstly, as part of the recruitment process, we seek to find out more about our potential employees as individuals. As well as testing their technical skills in interpreting and assessing their qualifications, we try to gain an idea of what sort of person they are and whether they are a good fit not only for a particular role, but for the culture of the business as a whole.
We also make a special effort to create a sense of community among our interpreters. Every Christmas, we arrange a gathering of our employees working in this field, sometimes inviting people to bring along festive dishes from their home countries and to share their own seasonal traditions.
The idea behind this is that it creates a sense of engagement and strengthens the relationship we have with our interpreters, as well as allowing people to have fun and to get to know each other.
This, in turn, contributes to feelings of reliability and trust, which is beneficial for the individual, the business and our clients. People who feel that they know our company well and enjoy working with us are more likely to be loyal and to take on more assignments.
Overall, good working relationships and strong personal associations with our interpreters contribute to better services and end results for our clients. We strive to apply the personal touch in our working culture, which encourages our language professionals to uphold the same standards in their work with clients.
Why working culture is so important
The growing importance of a strong, positive working culture is something that has been evident in various industries in recent years.
Workers are increasingly showing that job satisfaction and engagement are about more than just pay and monetary benefits. It's becoming more and more common for people to look for jobs that allow them to make a positive difference or achieve some sort of fulfilment beyond financial gain.
Being part of a rewarding working culture can play a big part in this, particularly when the job involves working with people to achieve things that can make a positive difference to their lives. This is something that interpreters – particularly those specialising in fields such as healthcare – experience on a regular basis.
Recent research has emphasised just how important it is for people to find their jobs worthwhile and gratifying.
Professional recruitment firm Robert Half surveyed more than 2,000 people working in the UK and found that 68 per cent want to get on well with their colleagues, while 66 per cent want to find their jobs interesting. Other common priorities include having a sense of accomplishment (63 per cent), being proud of their organisation (60 per cent) and feeling appreciated by their bosses (50 per cent).
Phil Sheridan, director at Robert Half UK, said: "When attracting candidates to work for their organisation, businesses are increasingly needing to sell the career potential, the employer brand and the organisation culture at the same time."
At Language Connect, we attach a lot of importance to our working culture and building a sense of community, trust and personal engagement within our network of interpreters and linguists.
We believe this contributes to loyalty, commitment and reliability, which helps the business to maintain high standards and provide the best possible results for our clients.
Image credit: iStock/shironosov