Language translation is like a fluid, meticulous trade that is consistently evolving since no dialect is ever stagnant. Every tongue grows and changes to remain relevant as the world develops. Every translator must therefore increase and develop alongside, to continue adept at their craft.
As a translator to improve your skills is vital as it leads to a boost in your marketability in the field. Being a translator requires love for continuous reading and learning. Translators must continue learning as languages are always evolving, and knowledge of a dialect is never perfect. Here are several recommendations that will help you improve your skills as an experienced and highly qualified translator:
It will help if you have as many conversations as you can with native speakers of the language in question. The best method to learn and understand a language is by regularly speaking it in dialogue with professionals in style or those born to it. It is also an excellent way to pick up on nuances like colloquialisms and slang in your target language.
One of the essential ways to ensure that your translations are current, meaningful, and contextual is to study as much of the foreign language as possible. A dictionary should be your best friend and bible. Carry one with you as often as you can and read it in your spare time to continuously grow your vocabulary. Secondly, read as many local newspapers, books, journals, and publications as you can to absorb events, trends, cultural nuances, and jargon used within the language and the field of study, if there is one. Finally, take time to read as many translated articles as you can by your seniors and colleagues to pick up tips and tricks of the trade.
If you are used to and comfortable with translating from say Italian to another language, attempt to do it the other way around. Not only will this enhance your knowledge of the relationship between the two jargon, but also you might discover a hitherto unknown skill. It helps you able to do two-way translations between the language-pair. Hence this expands the range of projects available to you.
Over time, translators often commit themselves to specialization, a particular field of study wherein to build their career and reputation. It is a smart practice to do so since it improves their credentials for clients or LSPs looking for professionals or freelancers to translate material within that field. You can pursue a degree or certification within that domain, allowing you to come across as an authority within that subject. It also helps build your resume.