Fluency in at least one language pretty much qualifies you to become a translator, while being fluent in the ecosystem that surrounds translation as a craft makes you an excellent fit for being a niche entrepreneur. Why not combine both? Starting a translation agency is quite a complicated task, but once you’re confident that you have the right skill set, there’s nothing that can stop you.
Running your own company is something worth being proud of, but how do you assess whether you have what it takes to run a translation business? In this article, we’ve compiled a set of things you need to know before you venture into translation entrepreneurship.
Skills you need to possess
You should obviously be versed in a foreign language, both formally and informally. When communicating with potential customers, it is always crucial to pick up on cultural cues that are available to native speakers.
Being a good translator. DUH! But it’s not about telling your clients about how good you are — you must show how good you are. This is why you need a certificate. Similarly, this should concern the people that you hire.
You need to be an outgoing person. If you aren’t one in person — no problem, but you should learn to be one in digital communication. This will be very handy when it comes to setting estimates for projects and discussing prices in general. People are more inclined to pay more to people they like. This is why it is imperative to create a good impression right away.
You may be good at what you do, but it is essential to be efficient as well. Managing time properly is a crucial skill that will get you places. This applies to managing the time of your employees when it comes to assigning them tasks and allocating a certain number of hours for execution.
One of the most critical aspects of communicating with your clients is cultural awareness. Being aware of the peculiarities of foreign culture is imperative, simply due to the fact that it’s easy to offend someone. You can personally not care if you’ve hurt someone if you believe what you said to be true, but it can become problematic when it comes to maintaining, retaining, and acquiring clients.
Technicalities you need to take care of
Besides having the right skill set, it is imperative to take care of a large number of details when it comes to starting an actual business. It involves a lot of planning, banking, and accounting, and you may not like it — but it is a crucial part of running a company.
Here’s what you’ll need to take care of:
Before you actually register a company and even decide that this actually a good idea, it’s important to have a business plan that will delineate all the aspects of your company and how it will operate and generate income. Creating a precise and well laid out plan is absolutely essential for a successful business.
Register an LLC. The concept of what an LLC from a legal standpoint is relatively complicated. However, if put simply, having a “limited liability company” alleviates you as a person from responsibility if your company were to be sued.
Taxes are pretty significant and should be taken seriously. This is why you’ll have to register your company in the fiscal system so that you can regularly pay your taxes as a business.
You’ll need to open a special account with the bank. This is important from a few perspectives. It will ensure clean and “tidy” bookkeeping. Secondly, the business will appear more credible. Furthermore, it makes auditing much more comfortable.
Accounting is absolutely essential. If this is your first business, you may be unaware of many financial peculiarities and various hidden expenses that may damage your income if not addressed appropriately. Accounting will help you get the bigger picture and understand if there are any issues that may cause money to leak.
Get on top of any mandatory permits and governmental licenses. Failing to get ahold of the necessary licenses will result in hefty fines.
Insure your business. First off, it protects all of your personal goods in case your company gets sued. Secondly, there are many countries where insurance is mandatory, so consult the current legislature on the topic. Every successful business like PickWriters company tend to be insured.
Make sure you have a good website and an excellent online presence in general. The first thing potential clients see is your website, having a lousy, poorly made site will not attract any customers, which is indeed problematic for a new business.
Starting a business is hard, but not as hard as you think. While you need to take care of many important details, while having sufficient motivation and the necessary qualifications — you’re bound to succeed.