When conversing through an interpreter, it is important to adopt some specific behaviors and styles of communication. An interpreter is the person who conveys the meanings of all spoken words from one person to another. As an employer, you can use an interpreter more effectively and achieve better communication with unknowingly speaking clients by ensuring you and your client understand the message through conversing through an interpreter. This is the case of consecutive interpretation.
Role of interpreters
The role of interpreters is to accurately and appropriately conveying the whole message from one language to another. To allow an interpreter to do this, you need to pause often to allow time for the interpreter to interpret and allow the clients to respond. Always make your client the center of the attention regardless whether the interpreter is in the room with you.
In an on-site interpreting situation, speak directly to your client. Make your client the center of your attention, not the interpreter. You can arrange seat to facilitate communication between you and your client. If you are using an on-site interpreter,triangulate your seat to make it an ideal. When using the interpreter, your role is to conduct and manage the free flow of the communication.
Using an interpreter for telephone interpreting
The first step of interpreting situation is to introduce yourself to the interpreter and to brief the interpreter on the situation. As part of the briefing, you can describe the telephone you are using. You may allow the interpreter to introduce themselves to the client.
Tips for working with an interpreter
You can assist your interpreter to accurately recap what you say by using some simple strategies. Keep sentences short. Limit ideas for one or two sentences. Use simple language and avoid jargon. And pause often to allow time for interpreting. Be patient with the interpreting process. Sometimes one short sentence in English may require a whole sentence in the other language.
Source: Australian Department of Home Affairs
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