Oct 03, 2019

Translator Interview with Rustam Shafikov

For Rustam, translation was his calling. At the young age of 15, he had decided to turn his passion for learning languages into a career. After 14 years of translating from Russian to English, he’s glad he made the right decision. Rustam is a native speaker of Russian and is fluent in English.

Join us in finding more about Rustam’s life as a translator, the challenges he overcame, and the one thing he would ask all up-and-coming translators to do.

img

Hi Rustam! Thanks for talking to us. Let's get to know you better, shall we?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    You’re welcome! Thanks so much for interviewing me 🙂


    Here’s a little about me. I live in the city of Ufa in Russia. Russia has 22 republics and Ufa is the capital city of a republic is called Bashkortostan. 


    I live in Ufa with my wonderful family that includes a beautiful wife and two lovely children – one is 7 years old and the other is 2 years old. In my leisure time, I love to listen to music, play computer games, and watch movies.


  • img

    TBH:

    Oh, the perfect life 🙂


img

How did you get into translation? Did you want to become a translator right from the beginning?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    I had an inclination towards learning languages while I was in school. Hence, getting into translation was the natural course and an appropriate decision. To be specific, I decided to become a translator at the age of 15. 


    After school, I pursued Masters in English Philology from the Faculty of Romance-Germanic Philology of the Bashkir State University. There, I enjoyed studying very much and thought I’d like to do this for a living.


img

What would you have done differently at the start of your career if you knew then, what you know now?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:


    Online platforms help translators in creating visibility and a good portfolio. Another thing I’ve learned over the course of my career is that the international offers a variety of opportunities for translators. Hence, I would have liked to pay attention to the international market. I would not limit myself to Russia.


  • img

    TBH:

    True. The exposure helps you get more clients, too.


img

How has being multilingual helped you?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    First of all, being multilingual helps me make money 🙂 Of course, this skill comes in handy when I travel. It’s easier to communicate and pick up phrases of the local languages. 


img

What does a normal day in your life look like?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    Being a freelancer helps me manage my time in a flexible manner. I don’t usually get up early – around nine in the morning. Currently, I am working with many western companies. People there start their day even later. Hence, new orders usually start coming in at around two or three in the afternoon. Until that time, I work on current orders. I finish work around six in the evening. 


    My work schedule is a little unpredictable – there are days when I’m absolutely free.


  • img

    TBH:

    Oh, the life of a freelancer 🙂


img

Has anyone given you some great advice about being a translator?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    Well, the best advice I’ve received is singing up for ProZ.com. It’s a great platform for translators who are looking for work and wish to build credibility.


  • img

    Rustam:

    Agreed. It’s a gold mine for translators.


img

What has been your biggest challenge and how did you overcome it?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    In terms of my career, the biggest challenge has been to maintain good productivity levels. That means managing the need to do a lot of work in a very short time. 


    Also, I did a bungee jump once, and that was extremely challenging too! 


img

What surprising lessons have you learned along the way, as a translator?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    I was surprised that being a translator can be quite profitable and comfortable. I never would have thought so 15 years ago.


img

How do you want to be remembered?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    I would like to be remembered as someone who contributed to something big – maybe see my name in the credits of some famous movie 🙂


  • img

    TBH:

    Ah, that would be awesome!


img

Any project that comes to your mind when I say 'interesting'?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    I remember a project wherein I did translations for a car game. Also, I’ve translated texts for the US State Department. That project was interesting, too.


img

How has been your journey with TBH? Are you enjoying the projects you've been working on?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    So far, the journey has been really smooth. Everyone on your team is polite and there have never been any delays in my payments. Top-notch!


  • img

    TBH:

    Thanks, Rustam. We have also enjoyed working with you.


img

Do you remember any funny translation incident that you’ve come across?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:

    I can’t remember anything particularly funny but I do try to learn from the mistakes of others! 🙂


img

Teach us a new phrase in your language.

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:


    This phrase is almost impossible to convey in any other language. Also, it is difficult to understand if Russian is not your native language.


img

What advice would you give to an aspiring translator?

Answer

  • img

    Rustam:


    Forget about the borders! Try to work with other countries and companies abroad.


  • img

    Rustam:

    Great advice! Thank you so much for your time, Rustam.


  • img

    Rustam:

    You’re welcome. Thanks for letting me be a part of your translator interview series.


Share on

Ruju Patel

Ruju Patel

Ruju Patel leads the Content and Design Team at Translate By Humans. She has a background in Psychology and Business and former experience as an HR professional. She is a people's person and a pro at drafting contracts, policies, and articles. Her creative edge helps give life to all the written and graphic content produced by the company.

When she's not writing, you'll find her reading with her cats or combining her love for food and culture by traveling around the world!

img Leave a Comment

Similar Articles

img
img
Aarohi Pathak
Aug 06, 2020

All You Need to Know About Articulate Storyline Localization

With the entire world trying to fight and contain a pandemic, professionals and companies in various industries are utilizing eLearning not to let distances hamper t ...

img
img
Ruju Patel
Jul 30, 2020

The Long Term Benefits of Human Driven Multilingual Customer Service

Research shows that 72% of consumers are more likely to make purchases of products with information in their native language. 56.2% of those feel that access to info ...

img
img
Aarohi Pathak
Jun 25, 2020

4 Brands Winning with Multilingual Desktop Publishing

Every global brand ensures that it maintains consistent branding across different markets, demographics, languages, and locations. They try to create an ideal balanc ...