Visual description: A white woman with salt and pepper hair wears a black top and sits in front of a grey background and signs into the camera.
Transcript: Hello there! It should be no surprise to you by now that the last video in this series is focused on what happens with your team after the assignment is done. We’ve already talked about what happens when interpreters switch one another out, what can be discussed before you start working together, and what happens during the interpreting process as a team. Some interpreters might bail before you can have any further discussion, while might make a more polite goodbye. Some may choose to talk about the assignment and where to go from here.
I’d love to know if you typically ask for feedback in a debrief. I’m typically more comfortable asking for feedback than offering it right away. I would never want to have feedback come across in a negative way for my team. I recognize that some teams really enjoy feedback, while others are not that interested, which I respect as well. I would never want to overwhelm someone with my thoughts about the assignment, but that’s just me.
You may also consider what next steps need to be taken, including potentially reporting back to the agency if there was an issue on site, an early discharge, or if the ending time has changed in some way. Being released early may mean you are capable of accepting additional work elsewhere if needed. This could also be useful if there was any information that seems it would be needed later by the agency if they need to resolve any billing issues, etc.
One good way to introduce feedback is by starting with only positive comments including mentioning how a sign that they used was such a good fit. You could mention that you liked it so much you will have to keep it in mind for the next time it comes up. This is a good place to start with feedback so it doesn’t have to devolve into hurtful criticism or personal attacks.
Do you take the time to talk about any patterns that you have noticed in each other’s work? Is this something that you have already brought up in the pre-interpreting phase where you ask your team to be on the lookout for specific patterns you’ve seen in the past? Sometimes opening up that door on your own makes it a safer place for constructive feedback.
Another idea is that if something comes up while you are working together or perhaps writing back and forth during the job, this can be a good time to share whatever information or resources that you have available. This can also occur during lunches or other breaks as well.
Breaks are also a great time to check in with those around you. If you wait to check in after the day is done, it’s hardly possible to make corrections to your work! If you are instead able to check in periodically (without just seeking constant validation for your work) this will make for a better teaming situation. You can look for visible feedback, and also ask in your notes if you are doing alright, or if there is anything you could be doing better or any additional support you could be giving. This is my typical approach.
I’d love to know more about what you think of when it comes to teams. Is working together a more collaborative effort, or simply two individuals who happen to be at the same assignment at the same time? I can’t wait to see what you have to say. Thank you so much for watching and for helping me get a feel for standards in the field for this!