Greater than 6 minutes, my friend!
Hello, Chiara! Thank you for being the first interviewee of The Unique Pro series. We have been friends for a while now, and I know for a fact that you are very passionate and proactive in general, and this passion shows in your life and your work. Would you like to share this side of you with us?
First off, introduce yourself, but focus more on your personal than your professional life.
Hello, Valentina! Firstly, thank you so much for having me as your first interviewee. It is an honour as well as a great privilege to answer your call for talking uniqueness. It is so sweet of you to encompass me among the professionals you have chosen to take part in your series. I hope that your trust in my skills and me could be repaid through my words. Thank you so much! <3
Well, I am an Italian girl from Macerata – a little city lying on the green hills of the Marche region. I think my genes already wrote my future, because I have been a language addict since I was very young. My family has its roots in different cities throughout the region and Italy, so I learnt various kind of vernaculars that I used to speak. Sometimes, today – as it happened in the past – when I speak in everyday life, I use words coming from different slangs and I have to explain the Italian meaning to the people I am speaking to, so I think it has been the first example of interpreting of my life (or at least it seems like that to me). I am a coffee lover, I do not exaggerate when I say that I have a proper addiction: it is my fuel and I like it black – no sugar, no milk. I am a tv series addict and I love cinema. I am also a geek and I surely am a gamer and a social media addict. Anything about IT and social media catches my attention. You will likely find my alter ego or me on the latest online platforms as soon as they are released. Speaking of technology, I attended the High School for Business and IT Studies and this gave me the chance to develop both my technical and creative side at a higher level through learning how to code. But, although I spend a lot of time working at my laptop and using my mobile phone, I am a graphomaniac and I still write a diary and take notes the old-fashioned way: pen and paper. Last but not least, I love singing. In fact, I have a personal channel on soundcloud. Yes, I know, it sounds a little bit cheesy, but it is the reason why I started translating. As it maybe happened to many of us, I have taken the first step into the profession thanks to music.
Has your personality influenced your career choices (e.g., specialisations, branding, online presence, etc) in any way? How?
Yes, of course. As I said answering your first question, I am so many things all rolled into one, and – lucky me – I had the chance to go into the topics I have always loved the most. I have always been an artistic and creative person, and I do love anything related to art and drawing. When I was in middle school I wanted to become a mangaka and I read lots of manga and watched tons of anime. I attended a short course for newbies on learning the comics art and illustrating comics and graphic novels, where I learnt the basics. I used to read Dylan Dog and Valentina at that time, but my passion for the East Asian culture was stronger, which is why I studied Chinese at University. Speaking of branding, my passion for art brought me to examine in depth colouring techniques, palettes, design, and anything related to Photoshop and graphic designing. My favourite colour is deep reddish purple (plum), in fact it is the main colour of my logo. Maybe, you can see from this interview that I cannot be stopped once I start writing. I am a chatty, friendly and extroverted person. This helps a lot when it comes to online social interactions. I love sharing and I am always happy to connect to new people from all over the world, which is why I think I love social media so much. I am not perfect, sometimes I cannot manage all the accounts I own, but I try to be present for anyone and let the others know as much as possible about myself.
Do you think you have any unique professional features? Make a list.
Besides being a sarcastic grammar nazi who loves to make puns and play on words, I believe in honesty and positive thinking. I always try to create a comfy environment when it comes to manage projects and assignments, as well as to see the brighter side of any situation. In fact, I have a proactive attitude that helps me find alternative solutions to problems. I am an empathic person, and this makes me able to understand my clients’ needs and even propose new ideas that I discuss with them.
Do you reckon your clients, project managers or colleagues are able to perceive the real Chiara by following One Sec Translations on your social media channels or your blog?
Totally. I do not want it to feel like it is presumptuous of me to assume I am not failing at showing the real Chiara, but I usually put to good use all the possible resources I am able to manage by publishing pictures or posts shaping them out of myself. Sometimes, I just go with my gut. I think that this is the secret: shape your content into what you are through following your inner instinct.
I think we all should follow the common etiquette – a set of rules stated to happily live and work together – when it comes to be recognised as professionals, but showing who we truly are is a fundamental aspect of our profession. I promote the “honest attitude”, because I firmly believe that colleagues and clients must choose you as a partner/supplier or hire you as a professional for not only WHAT you are, but also, and above all, for WHO you are. I mean, anyone of us is special in their own, unique way. We have something special by nature, so we do not have to be scared of showing what makes us the key to carry out a project or solve a problem. It is also a matter of character, because when it comes to working together (and co-working as well, of course) you can see if you and the other person are on the same wavelength. Or you may need someone that is completely different from you. So, why should we just show a shadow-self and hide our true selves? It is not detrimental at all. It is our personal added value: that je-ne-sais-quoi making the difference. In my honest opinion, hiding it we choose to give up taking chances.
And now, just some simple questions:
Do you feel professionally unique?
Of course, I do.
Are you happy with your life/job balance right now?
There is always room for more assignments, CPD courses, studying on our favourite subjects, but I really cannot complain. Therefore, it is definitely a YES for me. However, I think we can always improve our status, so, although I am happy, I know it can be even better and I can make it, eventually. 😉
Is there anything you would like to do or plan to do to shine more?
As I said, I think we can always use our creativity to improve the way we feel about ourselves both as human beings and professionals. As far as I am concerned, I am going to diversify my online presence in a slightly different way. I will try to be more present through a series of guest posts on a specific topic (which I cannot reveal yet, but you will know more about it soon, I promise) that I am going to schedule week by week, then I have already started changing a bit the way I am already publishing stuff following a daily-theme.
THE UNIQUE ID
Bio: Chiara is a freelance professional translator and owner of One Sec Translations. She translates from English, Spanish and (Simplified) Chinese into Italian. Former technical translator (mechanical and automation), her specialisations are fashion, journalism, tourism and advertising. TV series addict and social media maniac, Chiara likes singing and English lyrics are her favourite ones. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
In my spare time I like to: listen to music, sing, travel, train, cook, draw, drive Daisy (my Peugeot 107), and catch up with my friends.
Book(s) you are currently reading: “Women who love too much” by Robin Norwood and “Twenties Girl” by Sophie Kinsella (I am not going to open a thread on the Italian translation of the title: “La ragazza fantasma”)
Share a song: “I found” by Amber Run
Thank you, Chiara, for sharing your uniqueness with us. Your honest attitude is what pushed me to know you better. You take life by storm and jump in with both feet, head-high, no matter how hard your life gets.
If Chiara’s story inspired you, share and leave a comment 🙂