Hey, Nobody Told Me I am Doing PR!

Maybe it is the unseen consequence of being the designated "writer". Maybe every foreigner is a de facto "translator". Maybe the company does not know who should be doing what. Maybe the company sees little value in labeling departments – as long as the work gets done. Maybe there is only one person in the whole company who can do communications competently. Whatever the reason, individuals who thought they were one kind of communicator can find themselves dabbling in a variety of communications work, inevitably with equally varied results.

For example: a technical translator or technical writer may realise that a growing proportion of their workload consists of writing non-technical content for audiences with whom they lack familiarity.

I suspect - well, actually I know - that multilingual individuals in internationally active companies (large or small) are often called upon to perform many an ad hoc language related task, typically described as “translation”. Perhaps in a later article I will discuss the hazards and highlights of such duties. For now however, I would like to use this scenario (of which I, and undoubtedly many like me, have extensive experience) to illustrate the difficulty of separation when it comes to company communication functions.  

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