Valentina Ambrogio — professional English to Italian Translator, Localiser and Subtitler

The Unique Pro Series ft. Emeline Jamoul – In Touch Translations

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The Unique Pro Series ft. Emeline Jamoul – In Touch Translations

Posted by Valentina Ambrogio in Interviews, Language, Translation, Unique Pro 22 Sep 2015

For the second interview of The Unique Pro Series, I asked Emeline Jamoul of In Touch Translations to participate. We first “met” on Twitter. The 140-character limit never prevented her personality to come through. I would describe her as very calm, determined, target-oriented, but also super sweet and lovely. Let’s find out together what makes her unique.

Hi, Emeline! Please, introduce yourself, but focus more on your personal than your professional life.

Hello, Valentina. What kind words you have written about me, I’m blushing! I’ve been working as a freelance medical, marketing and business translator for a little over 2 years now. My language pairs are English and Spanish into French. I am a language and multiculturalism lover – you will find me the most at ease in international situations as I find them very stimulating. I’m also a mother, a wife and a citizen of the world :).

Has your personality influenced your career choices (e.g., specialisations, branding, online presence, etc) in any way? How?

Oh, yes, most definitely. I believe something as major as starting my own business was influenced by my personality. I can be very determined when I set my mind to doing something, and I don’t like having a boss above me telling me what I should do (something I’ve learned through internships, hence going straight into freelancing mode after I received my Master’s degree).

As for my specializations, I’m convinced that we all have a purpose to fill and I like nothing more than feeling useful and accomplishing things. I have no doubt that that’s what led me to become a medical translator. When I translate documents that are to be read by patients, I can truly see what an impact I’m making; when I translate medical reports on the progress made on finding effective cures, I feel like I’m part of a bigger picture.

My branding and online presence came naturally. I like being active on social media and I love meeting new people, so being on Twitter (which I find a lot more dynamic than Facebook) was a must.

Do you think you have any unique professional features? Make a list.

I would say that my most unique feature is my commitment, and that can be seen on three levels.

As most freelancers, I always have a hectic schedule – when I’m not working, I’m studying Dutch. When I’m not studying, I’m busy with my family. And when I’m not busy with my relatives, I’m probably out and about taking part in some exciting project. I try to be responsive, even in times of crisis where I wish the day could count 2 or 3 more hours (if not more, but let’s not be greedy)! I know that my clients like the fact that I’m actually taking the time to answer them, even if it’s just to say “Sorry, can I get back to you in an hour’s time?”

I know it’s a given for most professional translators, but after discussing it with a project manager, I was astounded by the number of translators who promise to deliver a project by a date and then completely disappear off the face of the earth! When something comes up and prevents me to stick to my commitment (and it’s bound to happen one day or another, we are all human!), I always make sure I warn the client of the problem in advance. Or I make sure I negotiate larger deadlines.

Finally, I make sure to ask questions and return the translation with feedback if this is necessary. This shows the clients that I truly care about their texts and that I’m willing to render it in the best way possible.

Do you reckon your clients, project managers or colleagues are able to perceive the real Emeline by following your social media profiles or blog, for instance?

Some of them like to read my blog posts and others follow me on Twitter, yes (especially those working in smaller-scale companies). I also like to connect with clients on LinkedIn in order to grow my network and to keep in touch with them. It’s nice to put a face on a name and it gives another dimension to the relationship.

Do you agree with showing your true colours and being yourself as a marketing tool? Do you think it is ultimately a game-changing factor, or do you find it irrelevant or detrimental to your career?

Today, there are so many freelance translators, and that statement is even more relevant to my language combinations (English and Spanish into French). So yes, standing out is a no-brainer! To me though, standing out is being yourself, and it shouldn’t be (nor feel) forced. I don’t see why it would be detrimental to one’s career, as long as you convey positive values which clients can relate to!

And now, just some simple questions:
Do you feel professionally unique? 
In what I do, no. In how I do it, yes!
Are you happy with your life/job balance right now?
Time-wise, I would love it if I could do without sleep and if the day had a couple more hours. I always end up with gigantic to-do lists for the day, so breaks are always welcome! But yes, I must say I’m happy with my life/job balance. I don’t think I would be able to take afternoons off if I had a regular a 9-to-5 job!
Is there anything you would like to do or plan to do to shine more?
Well, as of this month, I will be taking Dutch classes at university level. If all goes well, I will be taking them for 3 years, which will give me the professional proficiency I’m seeking to achieve and finally add this language to my services! I also have other long-term goals regarding my specializations, but these are too vague as of yet to be revealed so soon :)
If yes, explain your plan in no more than three lines:
I am planning to keep increasing my rates with new clients, and increase the rates I work for with my existing clients. This will allow me to maintain my income in busier times.

THE UNIQUE ID

Bio: Emeline Jamoul is an English to French and Spanish to French translator. She specializes in medical, marketing and business texts. A lover of languages since her childhood, she decided to found her own freelance business, In Touch Translations, in 2013.
Website: http://www.intouch-translations.com
Blog: http://www.intouch-translations.com/blog
In my spare time I like to: read (although I got extremely slow over the years – when I have time to read, it’s usually past 10 pm, and then I fall asleep after a couple of pages), watch and discuss TV shows, run, travel to new places, eat exotic meals, learn languages (yes, sorry, I had to mention it)
Book(s) you are currently reading: “The Girl in the Spider’s Web” by David Langercrantz and “Middlesex” by Jeffrey Eugenides
Share a song: My little obsession of the moment – “Freedom” by Pharrell Williams

Just one thing I would like to add: Emeline forgot to mention that she never backs out when a colleague needs some help, whether it is work-related stuff or personal matters. I know from direct experience :) – just another unique feature in my book!

Thanks, Emeline, for your contribution to the series. Wasn’t this an interesting read? Don’t be shy! Share and comment :)

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  • Natalie Soper September 24, 2015 at 12:41 pm / Reply

    This was nice! Emeline, you are a busy lady! Good luck with your Dutch classes!

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