Attending a translation and interpreting industry conference is an investment in your professional and personal development. Participants come away with valuable insights into the translation and interpreting business, and often end up meeting new friends, potential clients, and collaboration partners.
Of course, traveling out of town to go to a conference does have its costs, both in money and in time, but the benefits are often well worth it. Here are four great reasons to attend an industry conference.
1. To stay up-to-date
The translation and interpreting industry has seen rapid (some might say overwhelming) advances in new technology: voice recognition applications, project management software, CAT tools - the list goes on and on.
Fortunately, many conference speakers specialize in these new technologies and have already spent considerable time sifting through information from a wide variety of sources in order to present you with the latest information and best recommendations.
In addition, most conferences will have an area where vendors and suppliers can show their products. These vendors can be a valuable resource for learning more about the current business climate and discovering new innovations in order to stay ahead in this competitive industry.
2. To share knowledge
A professional conference is essentially a nonstop exchange of knowledge, and you and your colleagues are valuable contributors to this information stream. People who share a common profession are more than happy (thrilled, really) to share their tips. From where to find the latest and greatest glossary to which tool will best convert PDF files to editable text, you can find the answers to all of your questions - all you need to do is ask!
3. To make connections
Conferences offer a great opportunity to meet new friends, colleagues, and clients. Meeting your competition can be incredibly informative, and will often even lead to finding new clients and projects through networking and referrals. By connecting with others in your profession, you open yourself up to new ideas which can go on to help you to re-energize and refocus your career goals.
4. To have fun (remember fun?!)
Conferences allow you to break away from your daily routine and can be great fun if you go in with a positive, curious mindset. Why not take the opportunity to get away and experience the adventure of a new city? Remember, while attending a professional conference will ultimately benefit your work, the conference itself isn't work. Lighten up - you can learn a lot and have a great time while you're at it!