Arthur, manager from ED-med, a UK medical equipment company has called a meeting of his team members to discuss the recent flop they experienced trying to move on to the German market.
Arthur: OK everyone, we are meeting today to address a flop we’ve had. As you know, we have always prided ourselves on our excellence and our brand name has become synonymous with trust, seriousness, reliability and exemplary customer service.
Now, as you know too, our main objective this year was entering the export market. After analysis, Germany seemed most likely to be immediately receptive to our flagship product. But we failed to keep our usual seriousness throughout the entire production line. Since we are new to export, we cut a few corners in translation and now we are really paying for it. Whatever we do now is going to cost big time. Translation is a business investment not to be taken lightly!
We were overly focused on speed and keeping the price down. Our accompanying documents are full of errors that could potentially cause safety problems for users, risk marring our reputation not to mention jeopardizing the advance we could have had on this market segment in Germany. We have been given one month to turn this around and we would like to call on you to brainstorm solutions to help resolve this situation and right our course. So…
Martha: Yes, can we hire a German/English editorial team with translation capacities to go over the documents and correct the errors?
Arthur: Thank you, Martha, that is a good idea. Anyone else?
Crystal: Let’s create an in-house team to analyze the situation. We have German-speaking people – Thomas, Vivian and Alicia – they may be able to assess the document needs.
Arthur: Good Crystal, that too is a good idea. Anyone else?
Rupert: I’m for cutting our losses and starting over, using what we have learned here; in that way we capitalize on the flop!
Arthur: Yes. Thank you Rupert, I think that is an excellent idea. In fact, you all have great ideas. And that is how we are able to continue on our path of excellence. I will take all this to management and get back to you. Let’s meet tomorrow at the same time. But before we leave today, has anyone else got anything to add?
Magda: I agree with what Rupert said about cutting our losses. I think sometimes it is easier and less costly in the long run to do that, as odd it may sound. I think we should be careful to not use that particular translation company again though.
Arthur: Thank you, Magda, I agree.
OK everyone, if no one else has anything to add, we will disperse for today and meet back here tomorrow, same time unless instructed differently. Thank you all!
6 months later:
Arthur, seeing Rupert and Magda pass in the hall in front of his office called them both in for a quick chat.
Arthur: Come here you two – will you look at that?
Arthur was reading the Financial Times, checking the stock exchange page.
Arthur: We were able to turn things around thanks to From-To Translation. Look, the stock of ED-Med is rising, thanks to our remarkable turnaround and the expertise of From-To. In fact they worked with the existing documentation and cleaned it up. It did take them longer than it took the original agency, but the result is remarkable, on all levels. We’ve made a nice market entry and made up for lost time.
Disaster avoided. Calling on From-To Translation in the beginning though, would have been much cheaper in the long run. The main thing to remember is that a good translation is a business investment – it keeps on paying. But a bad translation can bankrupt you!
Thanks to both of you for your input and hard work on this project. A victory like this deserves a little celebration. I will get back to you and the rest of your team to set something up. Thanks again.