We are super-proud and super-serious about being the top rated language service provider for customer satisfaction.
And it’s not just good business: it’s good sanity. Because when you’re in the customer service business, customer satisfaction is very satisfying. And an unhappy client can really spoil your day.
Accordingly, we survey each client after every job, as part of our ISO 9001 process of continuous quality improvement. If we get a score lower than 7 out of 10, we automatically begin an ISO investigation. Cut to that time-honored stock footage of hook and ladder trucks squealing around corners, squad cars racing down the street, regular workflow pulled to the side of the street. Theatrical? Yes. But a great way to remind everyone what we are trying to accomplish and what is the key differentiator from all the translation scum out there.
So we got a ranking of 7.2 (not sure from where that .2 came) today from a client whose validator said we didn’t know their terminology. The client sent us their changes, which we compared to the translation we had delivered, marked the changes and sent it on the translator for review.
The translator came back with a list of all the errors in the client’s edit, along with lots of emoticons and snide remarks about the amateurish quality of the client changes. And you know what, she’s probably right. I mean there are only so many ways you can misspell mirror in French. Made my blood boil. If the client could produce their own great French translation, why would they call us?
The attitude oozing from the translator’s response was the real issue. The conversation went something like this. “I cant’ show this to the client. What’s up with this attitude?”
Another project manager says, “I don’t like to use her. She’s sloppy.”
“Then WHY are we using her?”
“She was next on the list.”
“Do you want to work with her on this?”
“We’ll get someone else on it, and take her off the list.”
When I had a bad attitude, I used to hate it when people told me I had a bad attitude. That pose of ironic cynicism that works so well with a clove cigarette is no match for eager-beaver enthusiasm when it comes to a deliverable.