Saturday , July 20 2019
5 essential skills conference interpreter

The 5 Essential Skills a Conference Interpreter Should Have

A conference interpretation service requires more than just translation skills. It demands a lot from an interpreter just to give the best result to listeners spectating and event. It’s a kind of service that demands speed and accuracy when translating one language to another. It’s a marvel to behold in action as it showcases just how much our brain can process in a very short time. It’s so effective that it has been used ever since the Nuremberg trials, to the early days of the UN, and even up to now in international relations.

In Appreciation of Amazing Interpreters

Conference interpretation services would not have been possible without the trials and errors made by a man named Leon Dostert whose interpretation system by means of talking and listening at the same time along with the use of appropriate transmission equipment, revolutionized how interpretation was done and left a lasting impact in the language community.

The practice of conference interpretation has continuously improved thanks to changes in methods and upgrades in technology.

Conference interpretation needed all those advances in methods and technology since it’s a requirement to listen, translate, and talk with little to no pauses. It’s all done simultaneously so the method needs a team of interpreters with the right skills to succeed.

See: Equipment used for simultaneous interpretation

The Skills Needed for Conference Interpretation


Two languages aren’t enough. Mastering many languages akin to a culture makes an interpreter versatile for any setting that requires a particular set of languages.

Cultural Knowledge and Sensitivity

Knowing a given country’s language isn’t enough. Learning a country’s culture, history, customs, traditions, and current events will help an interpreter speak like a local and may prevent any issues regarding cultural sensitivity.


An interpreter will definitely need to be flexible as they also must juggle jotting down notes for maximum accuracy with instantaneous translating them. They should also be always present when needed. Another thing to note is that conference interpreters never work solo. Being flexible to work as a team is necessary to efficiency.

Quick and Clear Thinking

Being calm and collected even in tense situations is a must. Conference interpreters are required to switch back and forth between languages and decide what appropriate word or expression is most necessary in an instant. This line of work also demands extreme concentration for long period at a time to listen, process, memorize, and relay information on a regular interval between pauses or sentences.


Punctuality and preparedness give an interpreter an edge. Arriving earlier than expected not only leaves a great impression, it also gives an interpreter plenty of time to review documents relevant to the meeting. Knowing what to expect will make the interpretation process more accurate and faster.

A High Standard in Interpretation

Conference interpretation services require interpreters who are the cream of the crop and should always be coupled with reliable equipment to get the job done with flying colors. The job is about breaking down language barriers and promote effective communications. An interpreter with the right set of skills will definitely make the service work beyond expectations.

About juanserbisyo

Juan Serbisyo is a blog that will give you tips on different business industries, services, and other livelihood news & information to help you optimize you money making opportunities.

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