How did you end up at STAR?
I completed my BA in French and German in 2013, but didn’t graduate with a fixed career path in mind. I had always excelled in translation at university so decided on a part-time, distance-learning MA in Translation at the University of Bristol. This gave me the flexibility to explore my career options while studying. I really wanted to gain more experience in a customer-facing role, so my first job was in customer service at my local library. As I got further into my MA, I realised that, rather than becoming a translator, project management was definitely what I was interested in and so I undertook a 3-month internship with a translation company in London. Commuting to London on a daily basis didn’t appeal to me, so my first full-time role in the translation industry was a translation checker for a leading translation company. However, I knew by this point that translation project management was the role I was after, so as soon as the opportunity to work at STAR came along I jumped at the chance and haven’t looked back since.
What skills do you think are important for anyone wanting to be a successful project manager?
To be a successful project manager, I think you definitely need to be organised and able to prioritise tasks and keep calm when things get busy. In this role, no two days are ever the same and when you have a very full inbox, or the parameters for a particular project change without warning, you need to be able to deal with it pragmatically and not get overwhelmed. Being a people person is pretty important too, not just when interacting with customers and freelancers but also when fitting into the in-house team. Finally, having a good sense of humour helps as well!
What’s it like to work at STAR?
STAR has a global network of offices and, although that means a huge workforce, it retains its ‘family business’ feel – it’s a friendly place to work and everyone helps each other out. We’re in constant communication with colleagues across the world, though particularly in France, Germany and Switzerland. The steady supply of cake, biscuits and other naughty treats as well as our “Payday Lebanese” keep us all going when we need that extra bit of motivation!
Colleague with the coolest pet?
That accolade definitely has to go to Catherine! She is our resident “tortoise mama”. Her three baby tortoises Mabel, Florence and Esther are a frequent topic of conversation. We are often treated to photos of them doing various entertaining things and they have even paid a visit to the STAR UK office. There is talk of tortoise number four being added to the mix, so watch this space!