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Chemical Firm Launches Revised Safety Standards in 16 Languages  A Translation Case Study

Chemical Firm Launches Revised Safety Standards in 16 Languages
A Translation Case Study

PROBLEM: When two companies in the chemical industry merged to form a new organization, the team had to make a lot of decisions on how best to unify the company. One of their biggest obstacles was that the two previous companies had completely different sets of safety standards. The team felt that neither set of safety standards seemed adequate for the new venture and it was clear that a new set of standards must be established. For a global company with offices in 140 countries, the massive impact of changing the safety standards meant that this project carried a great deal of risk. Changing the safety standards would mean training all team members company-wide to follow the new standards. To make things even more complicated, the new safety standards, web-based training courses, and supporting materials would need to be available in 16 languages.

RECOMMENDATION: The client required a language partner with extensive experience in both technical translation and digital production services, so they reached out to Techworld for assistance. After reviewing the content within the standards and supporting files, Techworld recommended an approach where the standard glossaries would be translated and approved by the client prior to translation of the full materials. The client’s feedback would be referenced throughout the translation process, allowing Techworld’s linguist team to deliver accurate and approved translations in less time.

IMPLEMENTATION: Starting with the most important English terms, each standard glossary was translated and proofread by Techworld linguists for each of the 16 languages. Then, the glossaries underwent in-country client review to prompt feedback on client safety terms. After the glossaries were complete, the rest of the safety materials were translated smoothly and accurately. Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed a 16-step process flow customized to the client’s specific needs that included client communication and approval every step of the way.

RESULT: The client felt the initial recommendation to start with translation of the glossary was the key to success with this project. This preliminary work paved the way for quality translations and productive training for the employees. The fact that Techworld encouraged in-country review in the beginning of the project allowed for valuable feedback to be implemented when it mattered most, and delivery of approved translations in a tight schedule. To this day, the client continues to revise the safety standards and train their employees on new processes and procedures. As a vender-partner, Techworld is proud to be a part of such a global effort to ensure employee safety.

Does your organization have translation needs? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

Metro-Detroit Automotive Supplier Empowers Employees to Collaborate Across Cultures  A Cultural Awareness Training Case Study

Metro-Detroit Automotive Supplier Empowers Employees to Collaborate Across Cultures
A Cultural Awareness Training Case Study

PROBLEM: An automotive supplier with offices in over 35 countries noticed that employees were struggling with cross-cultural communication and collaboration. Employees had trouble understanding and adapting to the work styles of colleagues from different cultural backgrounds and one break in communication in particular cost the company an important client. This was not an isolated incident – teams from all over the company were missing deadlines, exceeding budgets, and overall feeling frustrated by the challenge of cross-cultural communication. The company needed employees to be able to identify when a situation or incident was culturally driven and then know what steps to take next to clarify communication.

RECOMMENDATION: The client reached out to Techworld for assistance. Techworld recommended the client introduce a series of fully customized multi-cultural training courses that would educate employees and address the concerns of supervisors from any location. Since the situation was not isolated, all employees needed to have the opportunity to attend the sessions, so the client opted for virtual training.

IMPLEMENTATION: Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed a seven-part series of 2-hour “lunch & learn” training sessions in the following cultures: German, Mexican, U.S., Italian, Indian, French, and Japanese. Two sessions were held per month, and employees were encouraged to sign up for as many training sessions as they pleased. All programs were offered in a live, virtual training format for convenience and access.

RESULT: The results of the training series were overwhelmingly positive. Participating employees found the experience invaluable. Employees now possessed the ability to recognize their own cultural errors. In addition, entire teams started talking about the ways in which cross-cultural communication would impact their projects. This training helped them uncover a set of tools to improve their communication and collaborate effectively with others. The company now offers this same cultural training series to all their employees annually.

Do you have cultural training needs for your employees? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

Mid-Michigan Automotive Supplier Successfully Establishes English Training Program for Employees  A Language Training Case Study

Mid-Michigan Automotive Supplier Successfully Establishes English Training Program for Employees
A Language Training Case Study

PROBLEM: An automotive supplier located in Mid-Michigan employs over 100 employees who emigrated from Burma/Myanmar. More than 80% of the employees were initially at a complete beginner level with English. In other words, they were not able to say or read basic sight words, they had an extremely limited understanding of English grammar, their listening comprehension skills were very minimal, and their accents were too heavy to understand. As a result, training and basic communication on the plant floor were extremely challenging. Furthermore, the company could not guarantee the safety of their employees. Had things continued as they were, the consequences almost certainly would have been severe.

RECOMMENDATION: The client reached out to Techworld for assistance. Techworld recommended the client implement a fully customized English training course that would focus on the immediate needs of the non-English speaking population of employees. This project would enable the employer to implement a continuous English program employees could attend for as long as they wish and for new employees to begin as needed.

IMPLEMENTATION: Techworld consulted extensively with the client and designed both a comprehensive 16-week beginner English course and a 4-week train-the-trainer (T3) course with Techworld’s certified English as a Second Language (ESL) instructors. A complete curriculum focused on industry-specific vocabulary as well as real-life situations these employees encountered daily such as how to communicate important topics to their supervisor(s).

RESULT: As a result, the company now has an ongoing English training program offered to all non-native English-speaking employees. This program has enabled this population to stay gainfully employed, ensured safety within the workplace, and benefited the community as a whole.

Do you have language training needs for your employees? Call us at +1 (248) 288-5900 or send us an email at info@techworldinc.com.

Interpretation vs. Translation

Interpretation vs. Translation

 If you are in need of language services, you might find yourself overwhelmed by the number of options available to you. Although you probably know which languages you need services in, you might not know which service best suits your exact needs.

Luckily, there’s an easy answer!

If you aren’t sure what type of service you need, ask yourself this: Would you care if this person did their work in their pajamas?

If you answered no, you probably need a translator!

If you answered yes, you most likely need an interpreter!

Interpretation:

Interpreters on the other hand act as a communication middleman to help people speak with one another. There are several different types of interpretation, but the two most common are consecutive and simultaneous. Consecutive interpreters listen to someone speak and then interpret that statement for the other person, and vice versa. This type of interpretation is a bit like conversation ping pong. Simultaneous interpretation works best in circumstances where this type of delay needs to be avoided. A simultaneous interpreter interprets while someone is talking so that their message can be conveyed immediately. This type of interpretation is best suited for situations like presentations or other large events.

Because an interpreter works in front of people, appearance is important, and pajamas are definitely discouraged.

Translation:

Translators are responsible for translating written text from one language into another. These texts can be something as simple as a street sign or menu or as complex as a novel or airplane schematics. Aside from typically working within two to three languages, translators also specialize in select fields, such as marketing, automotive or medical industries.

Because translators commonly work independently and from home, working in pajamas would hardly be an issue.

At Techworld, we are experts in helping you determine what type of language service best suits your needs. Check out our website to learn a bit more about the translation, interpretation and other language services we offer!

Ted Takes on the Streets of NYC!

Ted Takes on the Streets of NYC!

I have been so busy traveling around Shanghai that I felt inspired to continue my travels and wanted to take the opportunity to learn more about my own country. So back to the U.S.A. I went! I hopped off the plane at LaGuardia Airport in New York City, where Rachel, one of Techworld’s Project Managers, was waiting to meet me. We grabbed a quick bite to eat at one of New York’s famous sandwich shops, Othello’s Deli. It was delicious! With a full stomach and eager mind, we were ready to take on the streets of NY and start seeing the sites!

National September 11 Memorial

At our first stop, Rachel and I learned that this Memorial was built in remembrance of the nearly 3,000 people killed in the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Two pools of water with cascading fountains cover the square footage of the two towers that were hit by planes. In the center of each pool, there is another fountain where water continuously falls deep down below the city. The fountain in the middle represents that our loss never ends. Surrounding the memorial are the names of all those who were lost that day.

Statue of Liberty

No trip to New York is complete without seeing the Statue of Liberty! You can take a tour of “Lady Liberty” or you can ride the ferry to Staten Island, where you can still get a great view of the statue.

We chose to ride the ferry, where we learned that the Statue of Liberty was a gift from France to the United States in 1886. The 151 feet (46 meters) statue is made of copper; with the pedestal, its total height is 305 feet (93 meters)! The Statue of Liberty took eight years to build, and the pedestal it sits on took an additional two years. It wasn’t always green – originally the copper was a dull brown color, but over time, it slowly turned the green color it is today. 

The Statue of Liberty was transported to New York in individual pieces. Many members of the construction crew who assembled the statue were immigrants, so you can imagine the pride they felt when constructing this beautiful statue which would become a symbol of freedom and democracy for all.

New York City truly is the city that never sleeps! The people and atmosphere are so welcoming and the amount of history is amazing. I highly recommend going, and if you do, plan on staying for a few days to take it all in.

While in Times Square, I met a couple who were traveling from Brazil. They were telling me all about the amazing places to visit in Brazil like Rio de Janeiro. They said Brazil has the most beautiful national parks. Did you know that they have over 64? Check back next month to hear more about my trip to Brazil!

If you’re interested in language or cultural training, contact us today! Sources: https://www.nps.gov/stli/index.htm,  https://www.911memorial.org/about-memorial,  https://wonderopolis.org/wonder/why-is-the-statue-of-liberty-green

What is Your Learning Style?

What is Your Learning Style?

Did you know that speaking a second language can improve your memory and cognitive abilities? Before we get ahead of ourselves, we’ve identified the four learning styles that will help you speak a second language in no time! Some people are visual learners while others prefer to listen to music or lectures. There is no right or wrong way to learn a language; you have to do what works best for your learning style. Are you curious as to what learning style best suits you? The most widely used tool for this is the VARK model, developed by Neil Fleming in 1987. VARK stands for Visual, Auditory, Reading and writing, and Kinesthetic learning.

Many of our language instructors follow this model because they understand that each student has a different approach and preference when it comes to learning a different language. And depending on the language, you may prefer a different style. For example, students whose native language is English may prefer the visual style when learning Japanese; but while learning Spanish, they may gravitate more towards a reading and writing lesson. Learning styles are not one size fits all. Many students will use a combination of learning styles depending on their objectives and schedule. For example, someone traveling frequently may prefer to have lessons virtually and incorporate the use of a textbook rather than a hands-on in person lesson.

Not sure what style works best for you? Read the tips below to find your learning style.

  • Visual – prefers to use pictures, images, diagrams, movies
  • Auditory – prefers music, lectures, discussion
  • Reading and writing – prefers reading textbooks, taking and writing notes
  • Kinesthetic – prefers hands-on activities, experiments, manipulating objects and materials

Visit our Language Training page today to learn about the programs we offer!