Formatting Your Translated Presentation To The Right Audience

As you sit down with your client and revisit the target audience definition and the report objectives, you should also analyze how the intended audience will expect the presentation to be organized.  There are a number of strategies for structuring a presentation or report.  Some of the more widely used approaches by Indianapolis translation companies include the chronological approach, cause and effect, and the scientific approach which makes us of induction, deduction, and comparison.  In addition, for specific types of documents (application letters, sets of instructions, proposals, and oral briefings and presentations), there might be an accepted format style that is already familiar to the audience.

While a generic format might seem to fit your project, keep in mind that a generic format will rarely meet all of your needs.  Since the objectives and goals of each project are different, you will likely need to allow for some flexibility and creative thinking.  As an illustration, consider a standard installation manual that provides sections on the following:

  1. An overview of the installation procedure
  2. A list of all tools and materials that will be required
  3. A  chronological list of the steps involved

Now consider a talk to a group of Atlanta French Translators that you were asked to give without any preparation.  In this situation, you will likely follow a natural pattern.

As the translators assigned to this develop the presentation for the client, you must be prepared to use a general outline and customize it for what you understand about the target audience.  Some things to take into account when developing your format is how the audience respond to different findings and recommendations.  When thinking about this, you need to consider how you will counter their objections.  Likewise, if the audience accepts your findings then there is no need to waste time on trying to persuade them further.

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How Language Translators Can Use Tables In Their Reports

Tables display numerical and non-numerical data.  The data are arranged in vertical columns under category headings so they can be easily compared and contrasted. As New York City French Translation workers explain, a table can be very simple and consist of only one basis of comparison or it can be very complex and have several bases of comparison.  Although not as visually dramatic as a graph or chart, a table is best for illustrating numbers and units of measurement that must be displayed precisely.

Construction: To make a table, follow these guidelines:

  1. Number each table in order of its importance (for easy reference), and give it a clear title that depicts exactly what the table contains.
  2. Begin each vertical column with a heading identifying the types of items listed (e.g. “No. of Vendors”) and specific units of measurement and comparison (e.g. “Miles per Gallon”, “Grams per Ounce”).  Give all items in the same column the same units of measurement (inches, sq. ft, percentage) and keep decimals vertically aligned.
  3. Use footnotes to clarify certain entries.  As one Boston Translation Services worker explains, “If a notation in your discussion is in Arabic numerals (1,2,3), use small letters in your tables (a,b,c).”
  4. Set your table off from the discussion by framing it with adequate white space.  Be sure the table doesn’t extend into the page margins.
  5. Try to keep the table on a single report page.  Robert Harrison, a Jacksonville Translation Services specialist suggests that If it does take up more than one full page, write “continued” at the bottom, and begin the second page with the full title and “continued.”  Also, place the same headings at the tops of each column as they appear on the first page of the table.  If you need to total your columns, begin second-page columns with subtotals from the first page.
  6. If your table is so wide that you need to turn it to the vertical plane of your page, place the top against the inside biding.
  7. Relate your table to the surrounding discussion.  Refer specifically to the table by number and title in the report text.  Introduce it and discuss any special features about the data.  Don’t make readers interpret raw data.
  8. If the table clarifies a part of your discussion, place it in that area of your text.  If however, it simply provides supporting information of interest only to some readers, place it in an appendix so those readers can refer to it if necessary.  Avoid cluttering your discussion.
  9. Identify your data sources below the table, beginning at the left margin. If the table itself is borrowed, so indicate.  And list your sources even f you make your own table for borrowed data.