After a good conference or event I’m always motivated and full of new ideas. I like to make the most of that by going through what I’ve learned and thinking about how I can apply it to my work. And I make sure I follow up with contacts made at the event to get to know them and their work better. Here’s one way I’ve been doing that this week.

Getting to know you

As I wrote here, I had a wonderful time at the virtual BP20 translation conference. In terms of content it was every bit as valuable as it would have been if the in-person event had happened in Nuremberg as originally planned. There were also plenty of informal Zoom sessions for group networking. But what I missed were the little in-between chats. You know the ones – when you get into conversation with the person next to you in a session or at one of the booths, and maybe grab a coffee to find out more about them.

Anyone for coffee?

What we did have was a networking app for attendees, so I posted there to ask if anyone would be interested in one-to-one networking in the form of a virtual coffee break on Zoom in the wake of the conference. This was a variation on the “blind business date” activity I organised last year in my favourite online business group (you can read about it here) and it’s a form of networking that I really enjoy – getting to know someone on a more personal level in a one-to-one conversation. For some more thoughts on networking for introverts, have a look here.

Of course you can also do this to follow up with contacts made at any kind of event to dive a bit deeper into topics of interest or perhaps find out how you can support each other.

Expanding my network

It turned out that lots of people wanted to meet for a virtual coffee, so I’m now working my way through a nice long list of translators (if you got in touch about this and haven’t heard from me yet, don’t worry – I haven’t forgotten!). I love meeting colleagues to find out what they’re interested in and what we have in common, and of course it’s a great way to expand my network. It’s always good to know translators working in other areas and/or other languages. Not only because it’s fun for me, but also because it means I’m able to better serve clients who might be looking for support in those languages/areas. So far, for example, I’ve have had some very interesting chats with a German to English chemical translator, a patent translator working from English into German, a British translator specialising on travel and tourism in northern Germany and a Spanish translator in Madrid, whose focus is on marketing and transcreation.

So if you need translation support in language combinations or subject areas that I don’t offer, it’s always worth asking me anyway, because I love putting people in touch and probably know someone who can help.