Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Bastien Daumas, founder of Bilingual Bastien, located in Flayosc, France.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
I provide translation and proofreading services from English to French, and I serve a wide range of customers, from big companies looking to translate their marketing content to individuals needing birth certificates in the target language.
Tell us about yourself
I first started working as a translator when I was still in high school. I would apply to any jobs I could find on various freelancing websites, and admittedly, it was a bit hard to get my first clients as I didn't have any previous work to show for it. Eventually, though, I got the ball rolling and started getting contracts consistently.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
As the owner of a translation business, my biggest accomplishment has been the freedom to make my own schedule and work from wherever I want. This freedom allows me to have a better work-life balance and to be able to take on translation projects that I am truly passionate about. It also allows me to work from anywhere, whether it's from my home office, a co-working space, or even while traveling. This flexibility allows me to focus on my work and provide high-quality translations to my clients while also being able to have a fulfilling personal life.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
One of the hardest things that come with being a translator is the responsibility of managing all aspects of the business. I'm responsible for finding and securing new clients, managing finances, and ensuring that all translations are completed accurately and on time. This can be a lot of pressure and requires a high level of organization and time management skills. Additionally, I often have to wear many hats and take on tasks that may not be directly related to translation, such as marketing and sales, which can be challenging. Overall, it requires a lot of hard work and dedication, and it can be stressful at times, but the rewards of being my own boss and being able to work in a field that I am passionate about making it all worth it.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
In the case of starting off as a translator specifically, here are my three tips:
- Consider providing low prices for your translation services on your first few contracts as a way to attract your first clients and build your portfolio. Make sure to ask them to give you a nice review once you're done so that you can build the social proof necessary to attract clients organically.
- Apply to as many translation jobs (while still customising your proposals) as you can. This is a good way to increase your chances of finding work, but it's important to be selective. This will help you to avoid wasting time on applications that are unlikely to be successful, and it will also help you to build a reputation as a reliable and skilled translator.
- Study the work of others in the field. Look for translators who have a track record of success and try to identify the strategies and techniques that they are using to achieve their results. This could include things like specializing in a particular field, using translation tools and software, or building strong relationships with clients. By studying the practices of successful translators, you can learn valuable lessons and apply them to your own work.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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