Speaker etiquette for meetings with simultaneous interpretation

Useful tips for speakers to ensure a successful multilingual meeting experience

In online multilingual meetings, cooperation is essential. Interpreters are there to help speakers and participants overcome communication barriers and build bridges between cultures.

These are a few simple tips for you to help interpreters get your message across in the best possible way.

Hard-wire your internet connection

Using hard-wired ethernet connections will make your internet connection be more stable. Connections via Wi-Fi or hotspots are not suitable for online meetings with interpretation, as Wi-Fi is prone to interferences.

Always use a quality plugged-in microphone

For meetings with interpretation, the audio quality of built-in microphones on computers or mobile phones are not sufficient. Interpreters require high-quality audio input to interpret your message without skipping a beat.

Choose a quiet and controlled environment

Remove external distractions and noise sources. Disable all push notifications on your phone, laptop or desktop.

Align your camera to eye level

Make sure the interpreters can see you clearly. Lip reading and body language are big helps for interpreters to better connect with what you are saying.

Adjust your lighting

Make sure the room has enough light, preferably natural light. Sit facing your light source.

Share all documents and/or presentations with the interpreters

The quality of their work will be enhanced if you share your presentation with them in advance.

Schedule a rehearsal with the interpreters

Not only is this important from a technical standpoint, it’s also an opportunity for the interpreters to familiarize themselves with your speaking style and to iron out any kinks before the big day!

Only the speaker’s microphone should be open

There is nothing worse than overlapping voices and background noise during a virtual event, especially for the interpreters.

Always state which language you will be using

This will allow participants to decide whether they can listen to the original audio or if they need to switch to the interpreters’ channel.

When playing a pre-recorded video

Avoid playing a pre-recorded video at higher speed than originally recorded, as this might affect the quality of interpretation.

Housekeeping for Meetings with Interpretation


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