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Fear Versus Growth: Lessons Learned

By: Zhana Borisova, General Manager - Omniage Ltd.

31 January 2017

There is a good chance that most of you business leaders remember reaching the point when you felt enthusiastic and willing to expand your business and take risks in the name of getting ahead to new horizons, versus the fear of all that is entailed in that process. What makes us go for the unknown and strive for more instead of merely cultivating what we already have?

During the past year, our team found itself in this same position asking this very question. I'd like to share some of the answers that made us think expansion and risk taking were the right choices.

As Derek Sivers sums up Carol Dweck: "People in a growth mindset believe anyone can be good at anything, because your abilities are entirely due to your actions." This might sound easy and indeed it could actually be so, but it all depends on... your mindset. A key factor is how we interpret fear and failure and how we react to adopting the unknown in our day to day business operations.

Here is an example from our corporate experience:

Our company has been in the localization business for more than a decade. Most of our processes have been done by means of technology, but without automation and constant effort put into making work more efficient. Now and then ideas in that direction were coming, but we were afraid to change what has already proven to work well.

We gradually started to realize that in order to grow without fear, we needed to find a way to achieve expansion without disrupting our core values. We wanted to stay independent, flexible, retain high level of data security, protect our resources and at the same time change our processes and improve them, be in constant motion.

A successful path to that turned out to be the combination of two key factors: automation and server technology. Our aim is to achieve high level of automation of all repetitive and predictive processes and at the same time make use of all existing assets such as TMS, terminology and translation memory repository and resources.

The answer to meet these needs came by means of using cloud server technology where CAT server (such as SDL Trados Groupshare and Across Language Server) and integration solution (through XTRF) are to be deployed.

Following this protocol we realized we could keep our high level of flexibility and independence, which made it possible for our team members to work distantly. At the same time we kept a high level of data security, but still managed to engage more linguists, use more diverse resources like MT, terminology corpora and so on. The final result was scaling up and growth.

And what about fear? Sure we've had much of it through all stages of the process, because none of us had been experienced particularly in server administration. It was complex to realize all the connections when it comes to integration between TMS and CAT technology. But as noted above, what matters is to believe that only through constant motion and striving could you become good at anything.

And anything implies growth - either on personal, team or corporate level.

Zhana Borisova

Zhana Borisova is an established and recognized professional on the European language industry scene. For more than ten years now she has been helping international language service providers and organizations solve their language issues by managing her language company Omniage and providing exclusive services in the field of localization, translations and content management.