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Freelance Experts 06.26.18 BLOG 

Professional Development in a Freelance World: Thinking Outside the Module

By Heather Schultes, Director, Global Training, TransPerfect

speaker takes the stages at a conference

Professional Development in a Freelance World: Thinking Outside the Module

Being a self-employed or freelance professional can certainly have its lonely periods, and it takes a tremendous amount of self-determination to run a successful freelance business. A significant part of that success can be attributed to the skills developed through personal and professional growth. At TransPerfect, we continually strive to offer our vendors concise and useful training through our online e-learning modules; a training platform that supports the growth and skill sets of our vendors in every vertical.

Outside of online options, there are many ways to achieve your professional development goals. Here are three career development tips for freelance professionals in any field:

1. Attend conferences

Conferences are excellent places to expand your knowledge, develop new skills, and even work towards further certifications in your specific field. At conferences you have the unique opportunity to participate in hands-on learning via workshops or live assignments, all while getting the chance to listen and learn from the best in your industry. Our technology partner, Wordfast, recently held their annual user conference where professionals from around the world gathered to share and expand their expertise on a technology that is critical to our industry. This is just one example of the thousands of conferences available worldwide that you can seek out in an effort to grow your qualifications alongside what is most relevant in our industry.

2. Network

If you are taking the time to get out there, don’t be afraid to grow your professional circle as well. We are who we associate with. Connect with people who not only share common interests, but also have the experience and/or knowledge in an area you strive to learn more about. From a professional standpoint, we stand to learn so much from each other. Create a circle with other professionals who can help you grow your knowledge while driving your business, and return the favor by providing support to those colleagues in return.

3. Accept new challenges

Our industry moves fast, and new challenges are there for the taking by those ambitious enough to seize these opportunities to learn on the job. New challenges are discussed at conferences and among professional circles, but we cannot talk about professional development without discussing putting those challenges into practice. This is where growth is no longer just an idea but an implementation into your work. For example, as machine translation (MT) became a larger force in our industry, we began offering MT training to those vendors ready and willing to not only take on this new challenge but to learn more about it in practice. As an industry leader we understand how crucial it is to offer training in conjunction with any new challenges we may ask you to accept, so that you are not only better trained, but so that your goals are being considered and respected.

Through the right events, we can develop the desired skills, meet new connections, and expand our experience while growing through new challenges. Research and attend conferences that may be happening in your area or other locations. Never hesitate to reach out to the people you admire and respect professionally. In short, professional development and training are more than just online e-learning modules; it’s about getting out there and connecting with the people and challenges that help you grow!

If you are interested in learning more about our MT training, please see the information provided at



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