We’ve got a new logo. We added a 10 to the old one. We’ve got a new watchword, too: Behind every sentence there’s a person! The changes are part of the ensemble of events running through till early next year that we’ve initiated to mark our 10th birthday. We’ve also got a major announcement up our sleeve. Since we can hardly wait to share the good news, we’ve opted to interview György Kovács, the man who founded the company and who is our current chief.
Back in the days before you started up this translation bureau what did you do?
The short version is that I worked for a number of translation bureaus. I was lucky enough to work for a smaller firm for a while, and then I became a player on the teams of two of the ten biggest companies on the translation market. I even had a few months to explore the localization department of a software developer. In other words, I got to try out just about every aspect of the translation industry. Language Experts is essentially the outcome of that 7 or 8 year period.
When you look at the business, what gives you the most satisfaction?
The team! My colleagues. Even before Language Experts got off the ground I had to realize that I couldn’t do everything single-handed. “I’ll take care of it. By the time I teach someone else, I’ll have finished the job myself!” Sound familiar? That is the prescription for working 12 to 14 hours a day, watching your hair turn gray prematurely, and for a whole bunch of other things that negatively impact your life. It took a while but I finally realized that it was okay if something was phrased differently from the way I’d do it, or even, God forbid, if it weren’t quite as good as I’d do it. But the Language Experts team made me really see the light – they were far better than “good.” Not only are they outstanding as professionals, but they turned people with very different personalities into a community of friends.
Looking back on the road travelled since the early days, are you satisfied with how far you’ve come? What particular problems did you have to overcome?
Actually, there was a time when I was completely satisfied, which left me way too complacent and careless. And I paid a high price! In the economic crisis years we nearly folded. My luck was the loyalty of my staff during the tough times, which I think played a major role in our survival. Now, I believe and I actually hope that I’ll never again be satisfied with the company. That could well be the cornerstone of our future. We’re always trying to do a better job and to come up with new ideas. Not at all costs, and not just for the sake of doing something differently. That, I believe, is why we’ve come this far. Those ten years have given us the chance to move up in the world. We’re opening a Japanese office in Tokyo in the very near future.
What do you consider most important when choosing your staff?
That’s a tough question. The easiest way to describe it is by saying that the prospective staff members needs to be able to handle the job and to fit in with the team. This is why we have a three-round selection process plus a graphology analysis. Not only does that tell us a great deal about the candidate but it also gives us an insight into how well that person will mesh with existing staff. Recent years have shown us how valuable our internship program is, giving us a chance to really get to know our future colleagues.
What makes a team good?
Its cohesion. It’s not just an assemblage of individuals but a community of varied personalities. These are people who are really good at their jobs and very demanding with regard to their own work. And they are restless. They always need to be DOING SOMETHING. Something good.
Professionally speaking, what was the most memorable moment of the past ten years?
The moment when I decided to open the Japanese office. It still feels like a dream. But a vast number of memorable events led to that one. They included achievements and failures alike that it would be hard to rank in orders of importance. I look back with gratitude on each and every one of them.
Plans for 2016?
To complement the heavy work load with a bit of celebration. Then to get back to work ... and to celebrate a little more, here and there.
What is the key to the success of Language Experts Group?
The Language Experts Group itself. The team, the company, the 10 years of experience, and the fact that we treat our customers and suppliers like partners. Whether as a supplier or as an ordering party I believe it is always important to realize that the other person is your partner, and that partner has both feelings and needs.
Because behind every sentence there is a person.
We are long-time fans and supporters of a Budapest sports club where preschoolers and schoolchildren learn the ins and outs of hanami and takara karate. We are very proud of these young athletes who were first time participants in the European Goju-Kai Championship in Britain this past summer. They came home with gold, silver, and bronze medals alike. And according to the latest news, several members of the association will soon be presented with the “Top Athletes of District 13” award.
Keep up the good work!
Professor of language translation Kinga Klaudy, Professor Emeritus at the Translator and Interpreter Training Faculty of Budapest’s Eötvös Loránd University, recently celebrated her 70th birthday. A member of our own staff, Andrea Faludi was a contributor to the volume of doctoral studies prepared in Dr. Klaudy’s honor entitled “Along the clandestine paths to translation.” Our Andi’s contribution was called “Investigating lexical cohesion with CAT in translated texts – The domain relationship as a tool of lexical cohesion.”
Another of Andi’s studies was published last week in a volume called “Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) and Translation,” which was focused on the topical issues of Field-specific translation and training translators. Her study focused on “Library databases and how they serve translators."
We are pleased to announce that recently we had some great new colleagues joining us! Please read their own introductions to learn where they come from and what they do at Language Experts Group.
Boglárka Tímea Tési - Head of Business Development
Attention. Honesty. Openness. - Values that are particularly important to me and I can rely on as a professional.
My task is to ensure that we meet requirements above the expectations. That is the reason why having a deep understanding of our partners, their duties, specific needs is the most important thing to me, in order to provide our own processes and optimal solutions in a way which suits them. All this is joy. Because the knowledge, attitude, and experience that characterize the company make me proud. And because it is always exciting to map a new partner, a company, an area. For that, in my opinion, a few things are essential: Attention. Honesty. Openness.
Zsuzsanna Juhászné Hahn - Vendor Manager
I graduated from Pázmány Péter Catholic University with a degree in Bohemian and German studies. Afterwards I spent a few years living in Prague. I started working for the LEG team in 2009 as a project manager, where I’ve been able to put my love of languages to good use. I had worked for translation agencies before, but once I got into the office itself I also learned a great deal about translation software and how to run professional translation projects. I also got to test my skills as a manager of special projects. Then I took a four-year break focusing on motherhood and my two wonderful children. I rejoined the team in 2015 and was astounded at the upgrades that were so huge I had to relearn the business. But my biggest personal change was my own upgrade from project manager to Vendor Manager, which I consider a key position. I have been doing whatever it takes to sustain our great relationship with our freelance translators and editors, while carefully expanding the range of people working for us to include experts in new specialized fields and new language combinations while sustaining our exacting professional standards. I spend most of my free time with my family but when I have the chance I focus on my not-so-secret passion – literary translation. I translate Czech prose, preferably the work of contemporary authors, into Hungarian.
Ádám Szinger - Junior Project Manager
I got my first taste of the translation world as a German major at Károli Gáspár Calvinist University and decided to focus my professional life around it. My next move was to take all the undergraduate and graduate professional and literary translation courses offered by the university. Then, thanks to LEG’s internship program, the road from school led straight to the LEG office where the workplace attitude, collegiality, and environment instantly made me feel that I’d made the right career choice. This job was exactly what I had hoped it would be – a place where I could get my career off the ground in a nurturing environment! As a junior project manager I learned how to work with customers and organize the workload and how to manage translation software. Thanks to these new skills I love the day-to-day aspects of the job and can handle the workload in a truly professional manner. I love to read – primarily studies in philosophy and the humanities – and listen to music in my free time.
Orsolya Péter - Assistant
My job keeps me in the back office, but my enthusiasm is definitely front office class. I thrive on positive thinking and high energy. To me a positive workplace atmosphere is vital and a few months on the job have shown me that working for LEG was an excellent choice. My education is in social policy and hairdressing – two vastly different fields that reflect my love of learning new and different things, and facing new challenges. I’m currently studying to be a fashion designer and I’m able to use my creativity and spirit of adventure in my working environment. I do my work, primarily administrative tasks, precisely, quickly, and inventively.
To learn more about our staff please go to the Colleagues page and feel free to contact us with any questions you have.
We are pleased to announce that after several months of testing we are about to introduce a new, professional project management system in our office. Plunet BusinessManager offers a great variety of functions and flexibly adapts to individual translation management workflows, guaranteeing optimized translation process automation and flexibility for professional users.
This is how Plunet looks like from the outside:
Plunet is not making only our lives easier, it does for our clients too. It allows our customers to send in requests for quotes, issue orders, track projects and safely upload and download project files.
The Dashboard is the heart of Plunet, it provides an overview of all key information: translation requests, quotes and orders, deadlines and invoices.
When a request is uploaded in Plunet our project managers will be automatically notified both via e-mail and the dashboard, this way we can get the new projects going as fast as possible.
Language Experts introduce Plunet in it’s project management workflow from the beginning of September and will start sending out login credentials to it’s customers soon.
Plunet is great, we are loving it already.