In today’s world, there is a tendency to automatise and mass-produce. The manufacture of everything from clothes to food is becoming automatic in order to optimise production times, reduce human intervention and minimise costs. In fact, the keywords that best describe this trend could be fast, cost-effective and digital. And although these times can be exciting, we should not forget the word quality and what it means.
While dictionaries define quality as “the degree of excellence of something”, defining quality in practise is much more complex. Every industry and field of experts has its own measures of quality, which often requires specific knowledge. However, quality can be also subjective, which makes it a topic of discussion and even dispute. Nearly everyone agrees on one thing, though: quality means value.
Value generally means up-to-date knowledge, precision, experience and carefully selected ingredients, but it also involves human ingenuity. This is the key element that allows professionals like chocolatiers, writers and designers to create their masterpieces, offering customers unique experiences and making them want more. We have all read books that we couldn’t put down. We have all tasted chocolate that looked and tasted sensational and we have all felt the twinge of sorrow when our favourite clothes get stained—call it, if you like, the “power of quality.”
Being a translator is very similar to being a chocolatier or a writer or designer: it takes knowledge, precision, experience and carefully selected ingredients (words!). Most importantly, it takes human ingenuity to create a quality translation. Just like a master chocolatier, it takes years of experience and a solid background to master the art of translation and just like a good book, a good translation can get the reader’s full attention and provide an enriching experience by simply using the right words.
While industries increasingly seek to improve cost-effectiveness and decrease production times, it is critical to continue emphasising quality. We should all keep in mind the value and power of quality—and strive to be recognised for our unique skills.