Benefits of attending a translation conference
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It is conference season and there are many conferences that professional linguists can attend. Since I am a professional translator in the US, the most important conference for me is the American Translators Associations annual conference, this year held in Boston on October 27th to 29th. The ATA Conference is one of the largest conference for translators and interpreters in the world and can have up to 2000 attendees. Sadly there are many that feel they cannot afford or justify attending an industry conference. That is why I wanted to take up some benefits of attending a professional conference.


  • Networking – the most valuable benefits of a conference is to talk to other people in your profession, asking questions and exchanging ideas.
  • New customers – I have usually met some new customers at conferences, or met someone who has referred me to customers.
  • Training – These conferences are packed with educational presentations that can help you in the profession, with your business, your tools etc.
  • Personal brand development – At conferences you get ideas for further development of your personal brand and you can also promote your personal brand
  • New enthusiasm and ideas for your profession – I come back from these conferences with tons of new ideas for my work, my business and a new enthusiasm for what I am doing. You meet people in your field that are excited about their work
  • Staying updated in your field – A conference is the best way to immerse yourself in new trends, tools and noteworthy people in your field
  • Seeing real professionals in action  – This ties into new ideas, motivation and inspiration
  • Ideas for your own presentations – The more conference presentations you observe, the easier it will be to give your own presentation one day

The benefits of attending usually far outweigh the costs and I can personally see the conference pay itself back within a few months.

Here are also some blog posts and articles about getting the most out of a professional conference.

Top 10 Tips for attending a Conference, by Bill Lampton at Business Know How

Tips for Navigating Your First ATA Conference, by Jill Sommer at ATA Online Learning

I also wrote about “Getting the most out of a conference” last year, with tips on what to do before, during and after the conference.

Did I forget any important posts or tips on attending conferences? Please share! I hope to see you at the next translation conference.





Swedish Translation Services is a company owned by Tess Whitty, a freelance translator (English-Swedish), proofreader, editor, copy writer, localizer and entrepreneur.


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