Translation is a vast field where you have a lot of opportunities to earn huge money. In the current digital world, the importance of translation has increased substantially. You need to acquire some important skills as a translator to stand alone in the competition. In this article, I will discuss 10 basic and important skills every translator should have to be successful.

Strong Grip on Languages

If you know more than one language, you can enter the field of translation. However, you must have a strong grip on the languages to translate accurately. Otherwise, you will misinterpret the text and lose your reputation. You cannot risk delivering translations with errors in any market as there is a lot of competition in this field. You must have a strong grip on the source language. You can improve your grip by studying a language from a reputed institute. Getting a degree in a non-native language is the best option in this regard. Moreover, you have to develop reading, listening, learning, and writing skills.

Excellent Writing Skills

Translation is all about writing. If you do not have good writing skills, then you cannot be a great translator. The source language is usually the second language of a translator while the target language is its native language. So, a writer should develop writing skills in both languages. A translator can develop his/her writing skills by taking some viable writing courses. Practice makes perfect. You have to practice a lot to master your writing skills. Always stay ready to learn new styles of writing to expand your portfolio.

Deep Knowledge about cultures

A good translator is said to be the one having deep knowledge about the culture of both source and target languages. Different people view the world and spend their lives in different ways. So, a translator must align its translation according to the people he is dealing with. Your translation’s impact depends on your knowledge about culture. The best way to improve your cultural knowledge is to spend some time in both source and target countries. You should also participate in cultural events and make social relations with people of different cultures by using social media. You can also research about the cultural aspects of the concerned languages on the internet. Last but not least, you should consume media in both source and target languages.

Great Time Management

As a freelance translator, you must have excellent time management skills. Your clients can give you a tight deadline. You always have to take a well-calculated decision in terms of taking a translation contract. The efficiency of your translations depends on your time management skills. Never panic and always try to finish your work way before the actual deadline. Moreover, spare some time  reviewing and proofreading your work.

 Communication skills

As a translator, you must have good communication skills. You have to talk to your clients knowledgeably. You must pay full attention to details of the task while communicating with your clients. It’s important to clear all concerns before agreeing to work with a client. Moreover, you should keep your client updated with the progress of your work. Most of the clients talk to many translators before assigning a job, so you have strong persuasive skills to grab the attention of the clients.

Motivation and Devotion

Translation is often a lengthy and time-consuming job. A good translator is said to be one who never gets tired of his work. A strong self-motivation and devotion are required to take translation as a full-time job. As a professional, you should work hard to get the best outcomes. You should strive for perfection in your translations to get the full confidence of your clients.


Professionalism is a decisive factor in the success of a translator. You should work with the right approach to deal with your clients. You should always think from your client’s point of view. It will improve your working habits and make you a successful translator. Your dealing with the client must be professional.

Latest Industrial Knowledge

Translation is a vast industry. The market conditions keep changing over time. Every translator must have excellent research skills to get as much knowledge about the industry as possible. You should adapt your working plan to changes you notice in the market. Moreover, you should always look for expanding your business cycle.

Technological Skills

A person having more knowledge about technology has a true asset over competition. There are several technologies that are used in the field of translation. Most of  successful translators use Computer Assisted Translation (CAT) tools to enhance their translation efficiency. Moreover, it is important for every translation to gain updated word processing knowledge to compete well in the current digital world.


Translators are required to keep sensitive information confidential in some translation tasks. So, a good translator always takes care of it while dealing with his clients. Confidential informations of the clients must be kept secured while translating legal documents, birth certificates, marriage certificates, and other such documents. It is one of the most important skills for a translator.


Translation is a vast field with great opportunities for people to earn working from their homes. Nowadays, many people understanding at least two languages have chosen to work as freelance translators. It has opened new gates for people who know more than one language to become professional translators. However, there are important skills every translator should have to get success. All of these skills are discussed briefly in the article.