Localization Academy

How I Started Tradulingua w/ Patrick Martinez

Curious about the path to building a thriving translation company? Dive into the backstage narrative of Tradulingua in this interview with its co-founder, Patrick Martinez.

Welcome to a new episode of our series “How I Started”, where we focus on founders of different localization businesses.

In this episode, learn from Patrick about:

  • The link between music and languages
  • How to achieve excellent service
  • Why smaller LSPs win over big LSPs
  • How to recover from reputation damage
  • Culture at Tradulingua

Andrej Zito 

Maybe let me start with the easy one. Where are you from? Patrick?

Patrick Martinez 

That’s a good. That’s a good question. I was, so I was born in Spain. But when I was three years old, my parents moved to move to France. So from the beginning, I, I think I’ve always had a very mixed background actually, it’s, you know, it’s funny when somebody asked me, Where are you from, you know, because it’s, I’m French. My, my citizenship is, I’m a French national, but, but now I live in Spain. So I couldn’t tell you know, if I’m more more Spanish, or more French, but I enjoy very much the Spanish culture and living in Spain. But, but yeah, so I was born in Spain, lived in France for my whole life until I was 18 years old. 17 years old, then move to move back to Spain with my parents. And that’s where I started my, my BA in translation here in Alicante. And, and yeah, and when I, when I finished my studies, while I lived for a year in, in Brussels, and then moved to you to the USA for three, four years, back in 2001.

Andrej Zito 

quite diverse places that you live in. But, um, let me start with the, the early age. Do you remember, I assuming, you know why your parents move to friends? It’s such an early age of yours.

Patrick Martinez 

Yeah, my, because my, my dad, you know, had to move to France for work. So So you know, I pretty much with my with my parents who? To friends, actually, I was so my, my whole family’s is is French. So my parent, my parents were in Spain at that moment, you know, just just for work. So actually, I never had the Spanish citizenship I was French from, from the beginning? Well, as as I used to say, it’s, it’s funny when, when you ask someone where they’re from, and you just have to look at, you know, soccer here in, you know, in Spain, France, and then when the national team is playing, that’s when that’s when I realised I’m really French, you know.

Andrej Zito 

But you can get a hate for that.

Patrick Martinez 

You know, it depends where you are.

Andrej Zito 

Right, right, right. So, can you compare to me the cultures of friends versus Spain, I think I have some idea about the Spanish culture. I used to live very briefly in Barcelona, but I never been to friends, especially for living. How would you compare the two cultures?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, it’s, you know, it’s tough to compare, because there is different friends is in different Spain’s a few put it in Pro. So depending, you know, if you’re from the north of France, the South of France, maybe the south of France is going to be similar to, to Spain, in terms of the culture, very different from what’s happening in the north of France, I would say, the Spanish culture is much more, much more laid back much more, you know, enjoying a social life. at later times, in the day, I would say, you know, it’s when when you go to France, maybe it’s 7pm 8pm, you know, you see no one in the streets. And then when you go to Spain at 7pm, it’s the, almost the beginning of the afternoon. So it’s, it’s a, it’s a much different, different culture in terms of, you know, I think enjoying life, social life, and being, you know, a more laid back. And you can extend this to, to all aspects of life, I would say in, in Spain, you know, lay back in, in terms of, you know, my business in terms of, you know, the relationship with with others social relationships, so it’s, yeah, I would say more laid back in in Spain.

Andrej Zito 

Definitely. This actually brings me to our industry, localization, translation. I know I’m jumping a little bit word, but I’m really curious about this. I never thought about this, you know, because I’m not Spanish. I’m not French. So that’s why I asked you like, how would you define the culture of Spain or France and you said that there are kind of like, micro cultures within the country, right. So have you ever encountered some hyper, let’s say, local hyperlocal approach in localization, where you would actually be translating or localising for different regions, let’s say within Spain, or France? Differently, like where the companies would actually require LSPs to localise in such an extent or do we still think about okay, it’s Spain, let’s translate for everyone in Spain period.

Patrick Martinez 

Well, if you if you talk about Spain, as you may already know, there’s different languages in Spain. It’s not only the Castilian Spanish, you have Catalan, you have Valenciano, you have, you know, other things get in the north, I mean, you have different kinds of languages. So, obviously, you would have to localise for these languages, in case in case needed, I won’t, I wouldn’t see this as much for in France. But in terms of our business, we don’t do it that much. We pretty much work into Spanish, you know, or into French. But we don’t work. I mean, we do sometimes, we do have some, some jobs we do for some governmental agencies where we, we need to localise into the local languages, very specifically, but it’s not I would say the, you know, the main thing that we do, but we do it, but it’s not what we do, most of the time, I would say,

Andrej Zito 

if you were to think about long term into the future, do you think this would be a way to go forward, like to really, really respect the local cultures, and the micro cultures within a certain country, because that’s when you can best address the customer.

Patrick Martinez 

Not for our business. So mainly what we do, and I know, maybe we’re just jumping forward into the, you know, the nitty gritty of, of the conversation, but it’s so so we mainly work with big corporations, legal field, financial, technical, we do some we do some, some marketing for for big fashion brands, too. So we do not work, I would say, as much locally as this, in terms of, you know, maybe, if you’re an agency based in Barcelona, and you have many customers from Barcelona, that use the Catalan language, and you have to work a lot in this language, which is not the case for us. We, we do have some clients that from time to time require us to do it, and we have the capacity to do it. But we it’s not something that’s definitely not something that, you know, looking at the future, something that we would want to do more, or we would focus our efforts into, because of the type of business we have, you know, we’re not so much local. I mean, we’re based in Alicante, which is a, you know, medium sized town, and on the Mediterranean coast, and but our customers are, you know, from all over the world, pretty much Europe, and the US. So I mean, Europe, you know, continental will say, UK, and the US, some Latin American to customers, but some, you know, not that much. So local that you would need to vary, to have a very formalised strategy in terms of using the local languages.

Andrej Zito 

Right? I guess maybe, okay, I’ll ask one more question about this topic. And then we can go back to your childhood. Maybe I wasn’t clear, but what I was thinking if especially the big, like corporate clients of yours, if they should, at some point, have this hyper local approach of communicating to their customers, instead of just I don’t know, having, I don’t know, a Spanish branch of Apple or Microsoft, and then they ask you to translate into Spanish, let’s say, I don’t know, in two, three years, they will be asking you to translate it into or even like a transcript or adapt the message for very different specific cultures within Spain.

Patrick Martinez 

Yeah, and that no, no, I can see where you’re going. Yes, it’s, it could be a strategy for them. Moreover, I think there is more and more in I would say in Spain and other countries in Europe. local languages are getting more and more importance. Because people feel you know, that they’re their identity. It’s not that they feel that their identity is is linked to the language to the local language. And and yes, obviously, some of the fashion brands we work with actually do it. So let’s say they want to sell a specific, you know, shoe in, you know, and Catalonia area. So they would have, obviously to work and localise this, and we have, we have actually done it. That’s, that’s why I was saying that we do it for the clients who ask us to do it. So we have actually done it in the past that not only working into customer language but also into the local into the local language, and also specifically targeting a specific target audience with with localization.

Andrej Zito 

Perfect. Okay. What were you interested as a as a child, let’s say around, I don’t know, before you became a teenager, so let’s say around the age of your daughters, what were you interested in back then?

Patrick Martinez 

What do you mean in like, my every day, what I like to do,

Andrej Zito 

or school wise, and also outside of the school?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, it’s funny when I was when I was little, my, my goal, you know, when you ask a child, you know, what do you want to be when you grew up? You know, and I wanted to be a pilot, but I was, but, but it’s funny, because I was really not good at math. So So I realised, you know, it was another path for me. So I really wanted to be a pilot’s bent, but my, you know, my grades in math. Were not that good. So, so then I, you know, I just evolved into something something different.

Andrej Zito 

Okay. But what about school? So if you were not good at math, what were you good at? What were you interested subject wise,

Patrick Martinez 

I was very good in languages. And that, I think that’s, that’s really what what set me aside. So I was born of, as I said, in, in Spain, and then I grew up in France, but my, my grandparents still live in Spain. So, so I spent my childhood going from France to Spain, you know, spending summers, and I guess I could consider myself bilingual. Since the beginning, with Spanish and French. And when I started, you know, learning English. At school, I was pretty good at I was, you know, learning English very easily, maybe back then I was not realising that the fact that I was bilingual was helping me a lot to learn, maybe a second foreign language. And, you know, now looking back, I think that’s, that’s really helped me. And also I was I was, I was, I would say, I am a musician. So I played the the saxophone, and I studied music from a very early age, because my mom was a piano teacher. And, and that’s one of my theories about the link between music and languages. The fact that it’s definitely something that helps you in terms of, you know, speaking English right now, for instance, without a French or not so much a French accent for me right now. Because I could speak with a French accent if you want to do it, because I don’t like it. But I think that’s, that’s my theory, you know, that the fact that you know, learning music, having that music ear is gonna help you to, you know, maybe to understand better the sounds or reproduce better the sounds when you when you speak a foreign language. Actually, when I speak French, obviously, I’m French, I’ll have accent but, but when I speak Spanish, you can tell that I’m, that I’m not that I’m French that, you know, you would, you would say that I’m Spanish so. And that’s my, my theory that the combination of language learning at a very early stage and music, it’s something that that helped me but that’s just my, you know, my theory, it’s not something that will have, you know, listened to a few podcasts that going the same, the same path, and some people studied it, and it looks like it’s, it’s true, but uh, yeah, so So back at school, I was, I was much better and, you know, languages and, you know, French language, Spanish language and all of that, and not so much, you know, science. So that’s, that’s how I think I reentered my my path in terms of studies and when I finished high school I, I decided to just study languages through doing a BA in translation in Spain.

Andrej Zito 

I’m still curious about the link between music and languages. It’s the first time I hear this theory. It’s very, very interesting. Is it mostly about listening to songs in different languages and learning anything from that? Or do you think it’s really just about the music? I don’t know the pattern or the rate or more instruments. Like if I was just listening to classical music with no vocals? Do you still think it would help you learn languages better

Patrick Martinez 

know what I mean is not studied music since I was, I would say five years old. So So studying music is studying different instruments, learning how they sound, how they interact with each other learning, you know, what are the different the different sounds, you know how to reproduce them. So, I’ve played I play jazz music, which is for me, the, you know, I would say the, the most advanced music there is, but you know, maybe I’m biassed. But I would say it’s not so much, you know, like, you know, that you like music and you listen to songs and everything, it’s more about, like a deeper understanding of how music works, how the sound work, how to identify the sounds, how to, to know, you know, how the different instruments, sound and everything. And I, I really believe that it’s, it’s something that is that is linked, actually, during the pandemic. So I played a very early age, early HR piano, and then I continued with the saxophone. And I had never played the guitar, for instance, and when the pandemic hit, and we were, you know, all of us, you know, staying home, I decided, I was like, you know, let’s, let’s try the guitar, you know, it’s a nice instrument, it’s, you know, it’s, you can play at home, so I bought a guitar, and I started, you know, learning how to play the guitar. And I learned to play guitar, like, very, very easily. Why is that, and I linked it to the way that, you know, learning a different language when you know, certain languages is easier and pretty much the same. So we, I think there is definitely a link, you know, between learning different instruments as learning different languages, you know, because in the end, it’s communication, communication through music, with a different instrument, the way you would communicate differently through different languages.

Andrej Zito 

And nowhere, maybe jumping forward again. But when you were a professor, Did you by any chance, bring this theory to your students? And I’m not sure if you were actually teaching something related to translation or not, but

Patrick Martinez  

no, I have never brought that up. I have mentioned it, I have mentioned it in class, but I’ve never done any, any studies regarding the link between music and language learning, which, but you know, this would definitely be something very interesting to explore. But I’m sure that I’m sure you know, and I’m sure it’s something that has already been done. So I’m sure if, if we do some research, we’ll find we’ll find some some studies about

Andrej Zito 

I’m pretty sure how they you use this theory or this tactic with your daughters. I assume since you already kind of like bilingual and you also know English. Did you start talking to them in different languages since the early Ah,

Patrick Martinez 

yeah, that’s something I was very I was very disciplined since the beginning so we live in Spain. And and from their very early age, I only spoke French to them and to this day, also so so at home they would no speak French to me. I mean, I would speak French to them and then TV would only be in English. So all the cartoons and everything I’ve always been in English and at home and and it kind of worked because the girls are you know, are bilingual, French and Spanish. Well, now they studying in a French school in, in Spain. But they haven’t done that. Since they started their academic education that they’re only been there for, like, been there for, I think three years, four years. But they spoke French before and and also the tremendous effect of them. Only watching cartoons in English really helped them I think, you know, learn the language and and nowadays they can watch Disney movies in an English with that no problem.

Andrej Zito 

Have a stupid question. What if your parents are both let’s say American, like they only speak English and you live in an English speaking country? How can this kind of family that’s let’s say living in a more monolingual world teach kids different language from the early age so it’s natural. So it’s not like I’m going to send my kid to a to a class or to a private lesson, but how can they learn naturally, if they’re only in, let’s say, English world?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, first of all, I would say there’s nothing wrong with learning language the other way, right? I mean, you can, you can be fortunate and have an ecosystem around you, which is bilingual or multilingual, which, which is something to, you know, to be very proud of, and, and people who have that are very lucky. But my wife, for instance, she didn’t grow up in, you know, in a multilingual environment, and she speaks French, and she Spanish is because French, German and English, you know, fluently so it’s, I think, so I would say it’s much easier, obviously, because the way you know, bilingualism works is you don’t translate, right? You learn the language, in the other language, directly, you learn the world, excuse me, in the in the other language direct learn that, you know, that this is a glass, you just, you know, and in French, it’s there. And in Spanish, it’s muscle. Now, it’s just learning in different languages directly. Right. So that what makes learning the language easier, but again, you know, learning languages is completely possible and haven’t been in obtaining up a very high level without having this around you.

Andrej Zito 

Right, right. But, right. But I would assume that’s maybe more efficient. It’s like more natural to learn the natural way. Like being in the world.

Patrick Martinez 

Oh, yeah.

Andrej Zito 

Okay, so we now know that you like languages, and you’re good at that. How were you outside of the school? Especially when you were a teenager? Were you a troubled? One? Or were you a nerdy type? Good boy,

Patrick Martinez 

I was a very bad boy. According to my grandmother, when I was five years old. I have some, you know, some some pictures, showing it. But it looks like everything went smoothly after that. So I guess the, you know, the bad boy was in me until I was five, six years old. And then everything went went smoother. Yeah, so when I was when I was a teenager, one of the things I guess that really helped me learn English much better is I was an NBA fanatic. So I played basketball. And, and back, you know, we’re talking about in the 90s, which now sounds like, you know,

Andrej Zito 

ancient times.

Patrick Martinez 

So, you know, I would buy magazines, NBA magazines, and English, you know, watch the games, that my parents would record it night, and I would watch it in the morning. And, and, and I think that’s also something that really helped me, you know, learn the language, that the link also, which is very well documented, and demonstrated that if you have an interest in, you know, learning language being at, you know, hobby or girlfriend, boyfriend, whatever, you know, that’s going to help you learn the language. So that’s, that’s one of the things that I did. So I was, I was a lot into into sports. I wouldn’t say I was, I was a trouble, trouble kid again. Good student, I was really aware that I would have to make my own my own path. Because so my parents didn’t have much money for me to, you know, studying up, you know, in a private university or send me abroad or, you know, send me abroad to learn English. So I had to learn English. You know, in Spain, so, in France, so. So, yeah, so, so pretty much. I was very focused when I was a student, knowing that, you know, me having good grades and, and being a good student was maybe a condition for me to work, you know, to be successful in life.

Andrej Zito 

Interesting. Do you Do you still believe that good grades lead to good life? Like, do you apply this technique? Okay. Yeah.

Patrick Martinez 

I guess when you’re a teenager, you know, your parents telling you you have to, you know, great. But, yeah, you know, it’s an and, and nowadays, I would say that, you know, things have changed and things are changing very fast and, and quickly and, and, you know, obviously, being a good student is something that’s positive, and then having good grades, something that’s positive and, and because it means that you’re learning and obtaining all the knowledge that the system wants you to have, right? But, but I would say, What makes you successful is having that learning process never end or never stop. And I think that’s, that’s great about the industry we’re in is, it’s evolving so much, it’s, it’s changing so much so fast that you always have to be to be, you know, on top of what’s happening. And that’s also one of the things I like, about being an entrepreneur and also, you know, teaching at university is because, you know, you’re in touch of with, with what’s, what’s happening in the academic world, and in the professional world, and sometimes it helps you establish the link. And and sometimes it’s eye opening about what’s what’s happening with the training, for instance, of all the young people wanting to become translators starting businesses and translation. Yeah, so, so so when I teach my classes, actually, it’s funny, because it’s, I guess, that’s one of the things that my students like is, you know, I use a lot of examples of real life, real, you know, professional life, in class of, you know, the do’s and don’ts, or, you know, mostly bad experiences that just, you didn’t do that, you know, I made a mistake, don’t do it. So, yeah,

Andrej Zito 

since you mentioned the education system, things have changed. What would you like, for your daughters to get out of the system, let’s say before they go into the higher education, so you know, like, primary, secondary school would be think, should be the objective of these institutions right now? And what do you want for your daughters to get out of it?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, obviously having, you know, the basic knowledge that you need to obtain, you know, in terms of what’s the basic stuff that you need to know, right. Math, and, you know, learning how languages work and everything, but, and, but I would say most of all, having that, you know, the general cultural knowledge about the world, and, and learning how to, or obtaining the tools to know how to, you know, find your path, I think it’s, it’s one of the most difficult things for somebody that is studying at, you know, school or university even that, to know where, you know, where it’s where, what is my goal, right, where’s, where am I going? You know, and, and I think part of what they need to learn is, you know, finding how to, how to find that path. And that’s really something only them can, you know, can do, you know, with, with the help, obviously, of, you know, of us with the experience and giving them the advice they they need, yeah.

Andrej Zito 

Do you think that parents are? Like, do you? Would you fully rely on the system? For it to show your kids, let’s say, the path or the goal in their life? Or do you think it’s like a mix of everything like society? Would they see on YouTube? You as a parent plus education system?

Patrick Martinez 

Yeah, it’s a mix. I mean, it’s, I would say, it’s, it’s obvious at this point, and, and maybe I’m a reflection of that, you know, I built two companies, and I don’t have any kind of training in terms of being an entrepreneur. So So I think, the learning and, and I would say, more and more comes from, you know, what’s around you, and not only the official institutions in terms of what you’re going to learn from, from the world, how to do things. The train the, the, the official institutions, like university, for instance, I believe, nowadays, and maybe I’m gonna get a lot of criticism for saying this, but it’s, it’s way too slow. It’s way too slow in terms of, you know, catching up with what’s going on in the outside world. So it’s one of the things I’m, I’m fighting more and more in terms of, you know, trying to have, you know, translation studies, for instance, you know, reflect You know, our help students do obtain the training, they need to be able to face what’s outside. So, so really getting the training and getting the, the ability to do whatever you want to do, your are going to have to find that, you know, path yourself, you know, and, and that’s the great things about the time we’re living, you know, you have so much training available, you know, being it, you know, private universities or, you know, courses you can take online, or, you know, there’s many, many options that can help you build whatever profile you need to, to become what you want to become,

Andrej Zito 

when you said that the system is slow to adapt. I don’t think you’re gonna get any critique from that, because I think it’s kind of like a general consensus. But what I’m interested in is that you are in the trenches, like you are the professor, explaining to me from your perspective, why do you as a professor have problems to adapt? Like, is there like, some bureaucracy that you need to go through? If you want to make changes?

Patrick Martinez 

Yes, because, I mean, you need to teach your classes, right, you have the other class that you teach, but you can add more subjects, for instance, to, to the VA insurance station, which which I would do for instance, I would add, you know, project management and stuff like that. And, and so you, you have the freedom or certain freedom in your classroom, but you, you know, it’s a broader, I would say, change that, that needs to happen sometimes. Okay,

Andrej Zito 

let’s go back to your studies of translation. What is the one thing that you still remember from the studies that you learned and that you apply even today?

Patrick Martinez 

Um, so I would say, when I studied translation, it was, I would say, even more farther from reality than it is right now. So, so yeah, so it was a lot of, you know, a lot of theory about, you know, learning vocabulary lists of words and glossaries. And, but back then even, you know, CAT tools were like, something that professor didn’t know about. So, it was so so far from the reality that, that really, very few things that I learned when I was studying translation really helped me in the business, right, not being obviously, when I translated Yes, obviously, you know, all the techniques and everything were super useful. But in terms of, you know, the, how a business works, or how how, how a translate professional translator can interact with all the tools available back then, was not something that I learned at the university. I was, I was fortunate that when I was in my second year, going into third year, the university my somewhat my dad is somebody who really likes to talk to everybody and you know, is a very social person. And one of our our, so he found out that one of my neighbours, where we were living, we were living back in Spain, had a translation agency, and so introduced me the person and he said, you know, this person has a translation interesting. What Why don’t you go and see them. So, so I was in my second year of university, so So I go there and knock on the door, you know, hey, I’m Patrick, you remember me? I’m your neighbour. Oh, yeah. So how are you? Like, yeah, fine, fine. You know, my dad told me you have a translation agency, and I’m sending translations and I’m very interested in and in the business and, and I was like, you know, would you mind if I, so this was the beginning of the summer. So classes finished in June, here, more or less May June in Spain. So this was in June, and I said, you know, would you mind if I just come every day and sit here and see what what what you do here and, and he was, he was very, very nice. And he told me, yes, not no problem. Yes, you can, you can come every day. And there’s a chair here and you can you can sit down and you can, you know, look and see and what’s happening so, so I started going every day and the first days I was I was looking to you know, the second week I’m I don’t remember exactly the timeline, but you know, second week, like, you know, here’s the computer, you know, you can look at this document and And then a few few weeks later, you know, I started translating for them as I was not an intern because I was just there I was I don’t have any neighbour any title, I was just, you know, the the neighbour studies translation. So, so I just sat there and started working with them translating. I was, I was fortunate enough that these guys were starting to use Travis So, and they had a team from Travis come to the office to give a training. So, so I was part of that training. So. So there I was, started my third year of university, knowing more than my professors in general, of capsules and everything. And so I continued working with them as as an intern, then, on my third year of university, you know, they started to give me small assignments, I would, I would go there whenever I wanted, because it was no, no real, you know, contract or anything between us and, and then in the end of the last year, they said, Okay, let’s, you know, let’s formalise this. And I started, you know, doing some translations for them and being part of pretty big, pretty big projects with them. And, and that was my first contact with the translation industry. And I was, I think I was very fortunate because I was in a very early stage in my training at university, doing a proper without me knowing a proper internship in a translation agency, which was willing to, to invite me in. And, and nowadays I am, I’m still super thankful to Juan Carlos, who is the person who invited me to, to stay there, and we became great, great friends. And, and we’re still in touch nowadays. And, and we still make fun of, you know, Ctrl C, Ctrl. V, you know, copy, paste, and then stuff like that, that that he told me on the on the first day, so, so yeah, that’s that’s the way that’s the way he started. And then from there, I I became a freelance translator.

Andrej Zito 

way they didn’t teach you Ctrl C Ctrl. V at the university? No. is Juan Carlos doing business? Yes, yes. So are you kind of like competitors right now?

Patrick Martinez 

No, no, we’re not competitors. We’re Hello, fellow business owners, I would say, you know, I’d say, you know, it’s funny that the word competitors, it’s, I mean, we, you know, there’s so many MSPs right around. But there’s so much demand, too. We were fortunate enough that we, we evolve in, in an ecosystem where the demand is growing more and more and more and more. So there’s a lot of work for, I would say, for for everyone. And, and the fact that we all work internationally with the internet and being able to have a client from, you know, from Madrid, Paris, Hong Kong and New York, you know, where’s the competition? Really, you know, so I actually have, I actually have a great relationship with many different LSP owners. And it’s an it’s, it’s very, I think, it’s very healthy. The way that we all exchange, learn from each other, you know, have the freedom to ask for help advice, you know, how would you do that? Have you heard about that? And so I think it’s something that’s very positive.

Andrej Zito 

Now, let’s get into the serious business. Or maybe not so serious. When did you first had the idea of starting your own business?

Patrick Martinez 

I don’t know. The answer would be a I don’t know. The The thing is, when I saw when I finished when I finished my, my BA. So I was a freelance translator, I was working freelance and so then I wanted to improve my level of English. So I looked for I went, I wanted to go to the US. That was my, that was my goal. And so I was I was very lucky. I found a position in, in a prep school in New Jersey, to become French teacher. So So I moved to, to the south of New Jersey, like two hours south of Philadelphia and, and I started to worry there as a as a French teacher, and but the the freelance, the you know, the freelance translation was always there. So I kept working as a, as a freelance translator all the time. So I lived in the US for three years. And I was working as a freelance translator. So when I come back to Spain, I continue to work and some of my clients one day, you know, I asked, you know, do you do translations into? You know, I don’t, I wouldn’t remember that, you know, the exact language combination into German. And I think I’ve always had in me, the intrapreneur. Mind. So, so why not? That’s maybe one of my defects is, I don’t say no. So I was like, Yeah, sure, I can do a translation to German, don’t worry, you know, and, you know, I found somebody with, with the different contexts that I had, that could do a translation for me and, and slowly like this, I started acting as an MSP, I think that’s probably, you know, the story behind the beginning of many, many MSPs around the world, you know, the story of the freelancer who, you know, starts a business because everything grows beyond what the translator Could, could do. So, so I started, you know, working like this, and then one client, second client, third client, and, and the business started to started to grow. But without me really realising I was a business owner, I don’t know, I don’t know if this makes sense, you know, I was in business, but it was, you know, it was maybe not big enough for me to consider it a business, you know, an employee’s I was doing, you know, the freelance job, you know, on my own, until, I would say, the year maybe 2010, when, when I started, maybe growing more and more, I started getting some, so I started working with, with a law office that that back then was starting to work on, you know, gaming, the gaming industry. And I think, to that, to that office, so we started to grow, and the clients of that office became our clients. And, and the business started to grow, to grow like this, working in 1234. Until, like, 40 plus languages we’re working today, establishing, you know, a network of trusted freelancers, onboarding, project, project managers, you know, quality assurance people, and that’s the way the business started to grow. And, and now, now, I realise I have a business.

Andrej Zito 

Why did you think that you have an entrepreneurship mind?

Patrick Martinez 

Because it became, well, I, it became a natural thing. Because not only did I start the translation business, I started another business. At the same time, when I returned from the US, I started a language experience business in the US. So it’s, it’s different business that I started that is also flourishing today. It’s a completely different business called travelling well. And, and also, I started this with, with my wife, so both businesses really, you know, it’s a, it’s a co founder, co founder, CO, you know, established thing, because we’ve been doing both businesses, and enhance both of us. And, and I think that’s why I say that, you know, those businesses have been evolving quite a lot. And in the last 10 years, and, and without any, like, entrepreneur, pre pre entrepreneur mindset in terms of, okay, I’m going to do an MBA, because I want to be an explorer, and I’m, and then I’m going to come up with an idea and I’m going to develop it, I’m going to find funding and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, right? So it became more of a natural thing that started to grow. But you know, the recipe and for me, the recipe in my head was going to clear, you know, giving good service, lead, good strumming, good giving excellent service to the clients. And that was our, you know, trademark. Actually, the translation agency didn’t have an eye on it a bit ashamed of that. But it didn’t have a website until 2017. So it only grew through recommendation and, and even back then We had pretty big I’m not gonna name companies, but we have big companies as customers. And it was all based on, on recommendation. And the name of the company was known, but we didn’t have any, any website. And then and I think was 2017 or 2018. I was, I was like, you know, I need to have a website. I mean, it’s I have such and such clients and, you know, we need to have a website. So, yeah, so, so we built the website, and, which is another website we have today, which is a brand new one, we redid our, our image last year, but But yeah, but that’s, that’s the way we that’s the way we grew, you know, what I did different things differently. Yes, definitely. I would structure everything, I would give everything, maybe a more structured growth, but I’m happy with the growth we’ve had, because it was a slow, slow growth, which, which I think helps you learn in the process, you know, making a tonne of mistakes, learning from them, sometimes doing the same mistake twice, and you realise, okay, I’m not going to do that, you know, for a third time. But, but I think that’s the way to go, you know, quality, you know, excellent service and, and growing, having a healthy, healthy growth in terms of, you know, being able to manage the growth, because sometimes it’s one of the, it’s one of actually one of the problems I’m facing today is having the businesses grow a lot in the last since then we’ve grown like 45 45% in the last year, which which is pretty big growth for us and, and managing such a big growth in such a short time can become a challenge. So. So yeah,

Andrej Zito 

one quick question is, since you didn’t have the website, how did people recommend you? Did they give to other people your email? Or was LinkedIn already? Just an email? Yeah.

Patrick Martinez 

Yeah, that’s great.

Andrej Zito 

Yeah, I think yeah, right now, yeah, like, right now, the first thing I would do is just, you know, Google your company’s name, and see what you put out yourself.

Patrick Martinez 

While the also the, you know, the niche, where we are, which, which is basically, you know, mainly big law firms. And also, big corporations. And it’s funny, because it’s something that always amazed me is, my contact person is normally the CEO of those, you know, big companies, or the managing partner of that big law firm. And even though there is travelling GWA, which is the name of our other speed behind, they contact me they contact Patrick, right, it’s, it’s always an in business, it’s, that’s, you know, that’s the way it works, I think, or that’s the way it works, you know, for me, is, it’s a human relationship. And, and there’s always behind a good business relation, there is a good human relation, you know, that needs to happen, if there is no connection, there is, you know, we’re not talking about liking each other, but there must be, you know, Link, something that happens, that makes you work with, with us or, or not, and, and, you know, when we didn’t have the website, it was just, you know, email and phone call, and, you know, maybe a visit. And, now, and, and when you get a recommendation from, you know, if you are a law firm in Germany, and you get a recommendation from a law firm in, in France, that tells you, you know, we use this translation agency to do a tremendous work, you know, if you have any project, you can work with them, you don’t need a website, they’re not going to go into your site or your LinkedIn, you know, that managing partner of that law firm, you know, he’s not going to get into LinkedIn, it’s just going to go with you because, you know, such and such, you know, recommend that your services,

Andrej Zito 

do you think this recommendation is specific to the legal sector that you’re in? Or do you think it’s like a general think

Patrick Martinez 

it’s a general thing? I would say, you know, I don’t have numbers, you know, metrics, but I would say 9595 98% of the clients we have nowadays all come from some kind of recommendation, right? And we have, you know, everything from, you know, you know, as I said, you know, law firm, big gaming companies, fashion brands, you know, pharmaceutical companies, engineering, they all come from some kind of recommendation from someone else. It’s, I mean, we do have those clients that you know, I have, like a call contact from LinkedIn, right? Hey, we do this, would you be interested, you know, in talking and seeing how we can work together? I mean, this happens. But it’s, I would say it’s, it’s, I mean, for me my experience, it’s much more difficult than having obviously a direct recommendation from from, from another client or somebody from from the same industry.

Andrej Zito 

I’m not sure if you have this on your website, but I noticed this on your LinkedIn, you know, like the cover image that you have behind your thing. And it says the treadle lingua professional translation services. And that’s why I wanted to ask you like, why is it just translation services? Why is it not localization? And now you’re even telling me that you want to be even more than just I don’t know, translation or even localization services? Right? Like, you want to be partnered, like a multilingual partner strategy partner, which to me makes perfect sense. So maybe just something that needs to be updated?

Patrick Martinez 

Yeah, that’s, I’m gonna I’m gonna write that down. Yeah. Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I mean, in the end, you, I guess, you evolve, right? And that’s, that’s something that’s something that’s so true for, you know, on a personal level, and the professional level and in the business of translation evolves, right. And for some clients, you obviously only a professional translation service provider, and you will always be this and you will never change, right? Because for them, that’s, that’s what you do. That’s what you are, right? But for some, some other clients, who have maybe a better understanding of the strategic importance of multilingual communication, and who, you know, have a broader mind or are more accepting to different things, and when they accept to listen to maybe advice or some other line of services that you can provide, then it’s something that you can do so. So yes, yes, I could, I could change that.

Andrej Zito 

Do you even have someone for marketing? No, we don’t. Okay, going back to what you said before, that you always wanted to provide excellent service? And I guess that’s the reason why you get recommended by the clients? What is the secret? Or what is what is what is the? What is the reason for you to get recommended? How do you achieve excellent service.

Patrick Martinez 

So the, there’s one thing that needs to be there, and it’s, you know, the product that we provide, which is the translation, right, the document or the you know, whatever, website or, you know, localization service, whatever, the quality of this needs to be done much So, so this is a given, right, this mean, it’s not something that’s questionable. Now, when I introduced myself to a potential new client, it’s, I don’t give you high quality translation and give you a perfect translation. That’s what we tried to do. Obviously, sometimes it’s not going to be easy, maybe sometimes there’s going to be errors. I mean, I’m not going to tell you no, I’m not gonna lie, obviously, you know, you know, the business, right? Mistakes can be can be made. But the, the, the the excellence is also in the service. So the availability, the adaptability to our clients needs, I think this is something that’s very, very valued by the by our clients, if we talk to, if we talk about, you know, the legal field, for instance, and, you know, when, when we need to provide a translation and since we have such, you know, such an experience in work, for instance, with many compliance departments, right, from different companies, and they have to, to present their documentation to local authorities in different countries, and we do certified translations. Well, when a client tells me, okay, we need a certified translation for, you know, Malta, for instance, or we know, the way the regulator in Malta once his translations, right, with a certain kind of certification, you know, written this way, and this is going to help you obtain your, you know, licence or whatever, you’re, you know, you’re requesting faster and better without having the regulator, you know, ask you to change the document because it wasn’t done the right way or anything. So, so that’s one part of the, of the service that we do, and that’s, you know, pretty much included in the service that we offer, but also, I would say our You know, project management needs to be, you know, top notch in terms of, you know, answering emails, you know, in less than 20 minutes, you know, providing quotes, in less than 20 minutes. My clients all have my personal phone number. In case there’s an emergency weekend, or, you know, a Friday night, we need a translation done by Monday morning, because we have this thing that has come up, and we need this to happen, you know, I’m going to make it happen. I’m going to have the team work on it during the weekend, I’m gonna have translators in different time zones, work on it and everything. And I think that’s, that’s the quality of the service. And that’s, and I think the reliability is key, the fact that the client knows if this problem they have, because in the end, we’re we’re problem solvers, right? The client has a problem, and I need this in that language done. How can I do it, and they know we’re going to solve that problem, they know we were going to take care of it, and it’s going to quality in the end, it’s going to be it’s going to be good. And the service, you know, in the process is good as well. So I think, I think that’s one of the that’s one of the key, the key components,

Andrej Zito 

I completely understand the benefit for the client, like this almost like a 24/7 availability to handle their requests. But how do you, as a maybe team leader, explain this to your employees, and even to the Freelancers because not everybody wants to be working on a weekend or on Rush projects?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, this doesn’t happen. You know, this doesn’t happen every weekend, right? I mean, we, we don’t we don’t have this kind of need every weekend. I mean, it happens now and then. Right? It’s not every weekend. But when it happens, the team knows. And that’s, that’s also the reason why, right? It’s it doesn’t happen, like every, you know, every weekend or every month even right, but it’s sometimes it does happen. Sometimes we have, you know, a big project or, you know, and some clients from certain countries that are, you know, that deal with things differently. I’m not gonna name any, any client or any country. But some, you know, some countries have a different culture in terms of deadlines. Right? I will send you the documents Friday 2pm. Right. And comes Friday 8pm. Hey, you haven’t send me the document you needed to translate that was so urgent, right? That was for Tuesday, and then they send it to you a pm on Friday, and they wanted Monday. 9am, right. And you’re like, What, are you crazy or whatever, but the client needs it. Right? What am I going to sell? What am I what am I going to tell him? It’s it, I can’t do it. I mean, they need it, we will have to do our best to make it happen. Obviously, sometimes it’s impossible. Sometimes. I just And that’s, that’s another thing that there is an sometimes there’s an education that needs to happen with the client. Okay, if if you are a lawyer, it took you a month to write that contract. You know, don’t expect me to translate it perfectly for you in two hours, right? It’s because it’s not going to happen. I mean, two hours, two days, I mean, it’s not going to happen. So there’s no indication that needs to that needs to happen. But sometimes when when there is an urgency, and it’s, you know, it’s tender that they need to present the documentation to or they it’s something that, that that we work with. But again, it’s not every weekend, it’s not, you know, even every month, but it’s something that’s there, and that when a client needs it, it leaves an impact, I think on you know, okay, they, they saved me for that. For that project, you know, I know, we can rely on

Andrej Zito 

Have you ever said no to a client? And maybe I should clarify this? Because I know that initially, you said that. You can’t say no. Or you couldn’t say no. Back in the days. That’s that’s how your business started. Have you ever said no to a, let’s say potential client? Like, for some reason, you didn’t see them a good fit?

Patrick Martinez 

Yes, yes. Absolutely. to potential clients and to attract your clients. I mean, sometimes you you have to, you know, you have to say no and, and again, it goes back to educating your client to what can be done, what can not be done. And, and also, one of the things that’s crystal clear for our team is our reputation is on the line every day. With every translation, it’s so hard to build a good reputation, it’s so easy to lose it and one job, right. So, so for us, it’s clear that you know, we always do our best to Um, to accommodate deadlines, crazy deadlines, crazy projects, but when it’s not possible, we will tell the client and our clients know, then that when it’s a no, it’s, it’s not doable, nobody else is going to be able to do it. And if they do it, you know, outside it’s going to be very hard. Very hard. So, so yes. So so we say no, we say no to clients. That’s, that’s for sure. And, and clients that and potential clients that we have said no to, yes. Yes, we have. I mean, the client needs to be obviously a good fit for us in terms of, you know, obviously, financials, way of working, you know, accepting our rates. So, yeah, absolutely.

Andrej Zito 

Did you ever have to face a challenge or a risk to your reputation? Because of some projects?

Patrick Martinez 

Um, what do you mean, elaborate a bit more on your question?

Andrej Zito 

Like, I don’t know, maybe one of your project managers, or some of the translators messed up really bad. And you really felt like, you might not only, let’s say, lose a client, but it might also cascade into your reputation going down?

Patrick Martinez 

Yes, obviously. Yes, we, I mean, it had, I mean, we’ve, we had glitches in the past. And, you know, it, it, it can happen again, I mean, you know, we’re, we’re dealing with, and then when we’re talking about, you know, human translation, mistakes can happen. I mean, now, it’s, it’s harder for it to happen, because we have so many filters of quality control, that, that it’s more difficult to happen than in the past. But maybe in the past, and I’m talking about maybe, you know, 12 years ago, or something like that, we didn’t have so many, you know, filters. And, and it could happen, but, you know, in the last five years, yes, we’ve, you know, we’ve made maybe one with one of our big clients, we we made a big mistake in one of the translations, because, you know, it was super urgent, we didn’t have time to proofread enough. And it was a big mistake. And yeah, and, and the whole reputation, as I was saying, just when went down, just through one, one job, and it took us a long time to recover, and we’re, we’re back. stronger, stronger than before. And, but But it’s, it’s tough, you know, it’s tough, it’s tough. When you when you lose your reputation, and just just for one job, so it’s but it can happen, yeah, it can happen. But you learn from your mistakes, you know, and you learn to say to say no, because maybe if you would have said no to that job, it would not have happened. So. So, you know, you you grow, you grow as a, as a company, you grow as, you know, as, you know, managing Person of the company, and, and you learn, you know, where to where to accept or not accept or how to, to educate the client, because maybe the client wants this in, you know, two days. And you have to tell him, No, this is not possible. If you want it, I can do it, but you will have in four days, right? And you lose your risk, you risk the clients saying, okay, no worries, I will find something, something outside. So be it. But the experience has told us that the decline in the quality is what the clients are looking for. I mean, we, when I’m on the best. One of the best stories I’ve have, as an example of this is, we had a we had a very, very big client that we worked with for many years, that decided to, you know, to do an RFP for the translation services for the whole company. And so we participated, but we lost it because we’re too small, right? So one of the big, you know, we’re talking about huge names in the industry, won that tender. And that was a year ago. And I was I was, you know, I was crushed. I mean, on a personal level, because it was not that we stopped working with them because we did a poor job. I mean, I had the whole team of the big company, you know, coming to me and telling me, you know, we’re so sad that you’re we’re going to stop working with you because you guys are doing a great job and, and I was you know, it took me quite a long time to recover. One year ago and and just you know, maybe two three weeks ago They came back. And they said, we want to, you know, would you be willing to work with us again, please? So, and I was that was, that was such a, you know, such a fulfilling experience, you know, going, you know, like, down and up, you know, and, but you know, it’s the path is so and that’s what we’re talking about at the beginning of our conversation are enjoying, enjoying the moment. And what happened, when we lost that client a year ago is we started to, to go out looking for new clients, and we, and we grew a lot. Since, you know, that moment last year, and maybe, you know, if we hadn’t lost that tender, we wouldn’t have made all those moves and, and started to, to go for clients and an improving some of our internal processes and so forth. So, you know, everything happens for a reason, I guess,

Andrej Zito 

if I can go back to the case, where you mentioned about the reputation hit, you said that you recovered from that? Are we talking about recovering your reputation within the same client or you mean, like you boast the client, and then you had to recover your reputation as a whole company towards the rest of the

Patrick Martinez 

world, the same client? Client, which is harder, I think, because, you know, we have to have them understand that, you know, this was a glitch that, you know, yes, it was a mistake. But it was not a presentation of the way we do work, and the way, you know, 99.9% of the rest of the jobs we did for you in the last 10 years, you know, so we’re talking about the claim that’s was, you know, very strict, and the quality really needs to be, you know, excellent. And, and we do understand the reason why and, and, you know, we were, I wouldn’t say, you know, Lucky’s not the world, but, you know, we explained it to them in a way that they understood. And also he was, you know, when we come back, because we lost our client, that kind of was gone. No more work with them. And it was a big part of our revenue. But when they, when they said, Okay, you know, let’s, let’s give it another try. And little by little, we rebuilt this. This reputation, this distrust, and, and, and today, I think it would be even, I think it’s, I think it’s like double or triple the work we did with them, and the past. So

Andrej Zito 

is there something else that you can do to recover the reputation? Besides what you mentioned, like explaining? And then second, just consistently delivering excellence? Is there something else? Or do you think these are like the two key factors, let’s say communication and consistent excellence?

Patrick Martinez 

I would say that’s it. I mean, because it will depend, right? It will depend if it’s a client you’ve worked with in the past for many years, that knows you. If it’s a new client, it’s a new job. And you you know, it’s first job, it gives you an, you do a total mess on that first job, and then you you know, you’re just gone. I mean, it’s, it really is going to depend on on the on the type of client you’re you’re working with,

Andrej Zito 

I have another question that just came to my mind. You can choose to not answer it. The example that you gave us, where you were one of the clients, made an RFP, and then they decided to go with it with a big player, and then eventually they came to you. Why do you think they did it? Or if I could generalise it, maybe why do you think? Or how can smaller LSPs win over the big ones? It’s a tough

Patrick Martinez 

one. It’s an it’s a question that I’m done. I, you know, I know the answer. And because I was given the, and there was risk, right? IE, the big company didn’t want to risk to trust us as smaller, small LSP with all their translation business, which, which, which is, you know, enormous. So, so they went with another company because I think they pretty much looked at, you know, their revenue, our revenue because we had to show pretty much everything and, and they realised, you know, they couldn’t they couldn’t go with us because of Um, because of the size of our company, because, you know, in terms of, you know, pricing and everything, recommendation from internal departments, which was there also the not, you know, in the, in the end, the other company was, I think, chosen over the risk, pretty much the risk of, you know, working with a smaller MSP. And that’s a tough and it’s a tough it’s a tough universe, when you’re going to, you know, fight for an RFP, and you have all these big, you know, we’re talking about the huge ones, right, as, I’m not going to name any names, but we know, we know, you know, the few ones are over there. And I mean, it’s, it’s very difficult to, you know, to fight when you’re a smaller LSP. Because you can, and the reason why they came back is, I think, also, you know, we know, because it’s because of the quality and everything, but, but also, I think that what a smaller LSP can offer, I think it’s key for many clients. And what is that is, for me, this big corporation is not just another big corporation, but maybe your ISP, they have like, 100, right? For me, you’re my, you know, you’re my, you know, my star, you’re my number one, right, and I’m gonna be there for you, and I’m gonna, you know, do whatever it takes to deliver a good quality service. And, and I think that’s the way smaller LSPs can fight. And it’s given this, you know, this adaptability, this, you know, tailor made service, adapting to your internal processes, you know, you need a PIO, you need me to accept the PIO, you need me to whatever, you know, I’m going to adapt, because I’m going to give you that service, with the other big LSPs they have their set systems, huge, you know, hundreds of project managers and, you know, and it’s, it’s in the end, it’s a, it’s a big animal that’s hard to adapt to the circumstances. So, so I think that the, the, the advantage that smaller MSPs have in these, these cases, is being able to, to adapt and giving the person that you have inside on the other side, because let’s not forget that those big corporations, you know, it’s the person you have in front of you, right, it’s a big name, but in the end, it’s your, you know, procurement person is the, you know, legal. The Legal Director, is the marketing director is one person that you have in front of you. So, so again, it’s the human connection, I think that’s, that’s there. And also, when I feel with the size we have, is these law firms, companies smaller or bigger, they really like dealing with the owner of the company, which this is not going to happen with a bigger LSP. Or maybe not always. Right. So. So I think that’s, I mean, we we have many, many advantages, let’s, you know, let’s, let’s get the message out.

Andrej Zito 

There. Can let’s move on to something different. We talked about the excellent service already. And I can assume that it’s kind of like a part of your maybe culture, or your values, something that you try to, you know, transfer to your employees, what are the auto things that form your culture? And where did that culture come from?

Patrick Martinez 

On You know, we, I think we’ve, we’ve mentioned a lot of a lot of it already. And, you know, in the conversation, you know, the, the not only providing a translation service, I think it’s one of the realisation for me in the last in the last years, you know, getting to know getting to know the clients, getting to know what they do, the projects they’re in. I think that’s, that’s one of the keys of the service that that you’re providing. So, so the excellence, obviously, is something that you know, anybody is after, right? I mean, if you’re, if you have a company, I mean, in your podcast, you want to, you know, you have you want to do it as best as you can. Right and everybody wants to do it this way. I think that’s No, that’s no mystery. But in the end, I think what’s key is, you know, that becoming, you know, that strategic multilingual partner with a client, you know, Ah, being part of we’re trying to be important, and not all the clients one that right. As I said, and that was your question before about the, you know, professional translation services, you know, for some clients use just a translation provider, which is perfect. And, and they love it. And that’s, that’s what I needed. That’s what I get. That’s it right. But for others, it’s something else, maybe for others, it’s going to be the same thing, it’s also going to be a translation service, you know, because the product is going to be the same. But they let us, you know, become more of that project. Right, you know, following up and, you know, for us, it’s, it’s, it’s great to see, you know, like, you know, the marketing campaign of, of a fashion brand, you know, go live in Italy, and see that, you know, we’re behind that. I mean, it’s fulfilling, you know, because, you see, you see what is what is happening, and I think that’s, that’s the beauty of what we do as I mean, sometimes you just translate a contract, and you don’t see what you don’t see the impact. But when you have, you know, one of those, you know, marketing campaigns or, or a client as obtained as one, you know, tender was awarded a tender or, you know, when a case or you know, and you see on LinkedIn, and you say, Wow, that’s, that’s great, because, you know, that’s, you know, we had our little part in that, which is not little wood, which is big, but we can’t see it.

Andrej Zito 

But maybe, maybe I should have been more clear, I meant, like, what is your culture, when it comes to like the team, inside try to lingua like, not like what you maybe do for the clients, but within the team, like, like, I assume I can only assume, based on my experience, and based on what I interviewed with, with other people, you know, like the culture is, especially for smaller companies, is a lot based on what the founders values are. So what was it like that in your case? Or do you even like, think about company culture? When I’m, let’s say, applying for a job, what would you say? Is your company culture, like, how would they be treated, how you like to operate, what kind of people you like to work with,

Patrick Martinez 

it’s, you know, we have a small, we have a small team. So right now, it’s, it’s a team of four people for five, depending on the time of the time of the year and the, the amount of work we have. So right now, we’re all remote. So we closed our office with the pandemic, and we have not reopened again. Because it’s working. Everybody’s happy working from home. And, and it’s an it’s an, I would say, That’s the tough part of the culture of the company, right? It’s everybody, so we don’t have an office where you could, you know, be together, grab a coffee and talk about your day, we do that. We do that remote. We do get together, from from time to time to, you know, to do company, you know, Team buildings and stuff like that, but we don’t. When we you know, as you said, when you hire when you hire someone, when I hire someone, I hire more, I would say on? Well, obviously, you need to have the qualifications and and everything right. I mean, that’s, that’s, that’s a given. But also, with this connection that you might have with with a person, I think, for me is key. But in terms in terms of, of culture, it’s, you know, all the things that we mentioned before are really embedded in into what everybody’s doing in the company. So everybody really believes in this need of, you know, providing an excellent service of these need of knowing what’s going on, you know, behind that translation that we’re providing, you know, about what is the result of this translation? What’s the result of my of my job of my work, right? I’ve been managing this project, I’ve given this translation to the client, what’s happening afterwards, right? It’s not only an invoice that’s being paid, it’s what’s happening behind and that’s, and that’s something that maybe it’s not written, but it’s something that we do every day. It’s something that we talk about every day, and that’s something that’s highly important for us. So it’s I would say it goes hand to hand with with what we said before terms of the internal culture and the external culture. What what you were asking is, is really you know, this, this quality in the service that we provide this never ending of learning of Also, which is really key for the team, the training, the learning about, you know, well, that’s all that’s happening outside of in the, in the language industry with more new, you know, as AI and so forth, I guess you, will you we’ll get to that topic later. Probably I don’t know. Well,

Andrej Zito 

since you touched on it, I mean, I didn’t put it there. I didn’t think about it. But I mean, okay, if we’re talking about it, but there is actually one thing that I wanted to ask, which is related to what we were just talking about. We were mentioning the word excellence before, do you think you are an excellent leader to your team?

Patrick Martinez 

I’m a, I’m a, I would say I’m, I’m a leader in process, right? In progress in progress. I mean, you do make mistakes every day. Right? And, and you learn every day, I consider myself more a team leader, team, a team member than a team leader. So I’m obviously I’m the head of the company. Mostly what I do nowadays is business development. I don’t, I don’t manage projects, or, you know, deal with clients, except when there’s like, you know, a huge project, or we need to, you know, to talk about financials of big projects, or, you know, very tight deadlines where the team really needs my input in terms of, you know, how should we proceed. But I’m more I’m, I consider myself more team member, most definitely. I don’t like, I like the word, the boss, right? I don’t like that. Because we, it’s one of one of the things that we write often is, you know, teamwork makes the dream work. And it’s, you know, it’s something that’s really everywhere, but it’s the truth. I mean, in the end, it’s the, if we want a company to grow, if we want our company to grow, we need to do it together. It’s not me giving instructions. And actually what I really like to do is getting my team’s input about, you know, even an email I need to send to the client. What do you think? Right? To check my check my draft? What do you think about it, you know, and that that’s something that I really like, you know, relying on, on on the rest of the team in, in some, some aspects, obviously, you know, somebody needs to be to be on top and be and be the leader and, you know, and, and lead the path to where the company’s going. That’s what I do. But on the day to day operations, I’m more of a more of a team team member. Absolutely. Yes.

Andrej Zito 

Speaking of where, to companies going, what is the future of try to lingua?

Patrick Martinez 

Well, it’s right now it’s so so we’ve, we’ve grown quite a lot in the, in the last the last year, I would say, our goal is to obviously to keep growing, I don’t, my goal is to is not like to become like the best, like the biggest LSP and whatever. I don’t know, if I want that. I really, I really like to enjoy life. And I, I strongly believe so I have two companies already. And, and, and I know that to grow is is also something that’s that’s difficult in many different aspects. So So my goal right now is to keep that steady growth that we have right now. And I’m pretty much you know, keeping our trying or doing our best to keep doing the things the way we do them for our clients. I wouldn’t want those things to die in the process or, or to, you know, to have our quality in service, you know, diminished because we’re going bigger, and we have more clients and we you know, so so pretty much having a steady growth will be the goal in the near in the near future.

Andrej Zito 

Have you actually quantified that goal lacking some sort of a percentage, like by how much you want to grow this year? Yeah,

Patrick Martinez 

yeah. I mean, we grow we grew 45% Last year, which would, which is pretty, pretty good. We’re aiming at 35 for this year. Which we are right now. On a good on a good path. So that’s, that’s good.

Andrej Zito 

So you mentioned that you like to ask for input from Your team. So what did your team say about GPT?

Patrick Martinez 

You know, it’s it’s funny that I, I saw that most of the people are scared about it in our industry. But for me, it’s, I’m thrilled about it. It’s, I think it’s such, I think it’s such a big opportunity for, for us as an industry to adapt, I think we are the industry where this GPT and AI is going to have the most impact, right? You know, language, you know, in general, so. So sometimes you have to manage, you know, the way people think and tell them, Okay, it’s there, but it’s not a bad thing. You know, it’s, you know, when capsules emerged, you know, many translators were like, Oh, this is going to replace us and blah, blah, blah. And, you know, it didn’t It’s a tool, right, so. So I think there’s many different opportunities are going to arise through GPT, and AI in general, we have some ideas already of things that we want to implement in the near future. Different business ideas, we’ll see, you know, which, which ones flourish, but there’s many, many different things you can know, you can now do with, with GPT, with, with AI, you know, being you know, summarization, content creation, you know, you name it. So there’s, there’s many different things. But I think the key here is going to be the adaptability. If you don’t adapt to these new technologies, and we’ve seen already, we’ve seen it already, we have one client in particular, that has already told us that inside the teams, it’s, it’s a big company, and it’s not their team, they have noticed that more and more of their team members are using GPT, to create content in the target language, instead of requesting a translation, you know, so there’s, there’s many different things that are already happening, I think it’s said, the things that are happening are going to happen much faster than one way that then what we we’ve experienced in the past with, with get tools or, you know, when we started to see, you know, empty emerging, and I think it’s gonna, it’s gonna happen faster. But I see, I think it’s, it’s a tremendous opportunity for, you know, for new business ideas, new, new projects, new, new services we can provide to to our clients. final set of questions.

Andrej Zito 

What are you curious about right now? And maybe, let’s say besides should GPD and this could be anything, whether it’s about our industry or work related, or even completely outside of work? What are you just curious about?

Patrick Martinez 

Right now, it’s one of my, I know, obsessions is not isn’t, isn’t a good word, but is, is automatisation of process. So it’s, it’s one of the things that I think when you grow a business, or key, we, we’ve done it already, we have, we have many different processes in place. But right now, my you know, besides the business development, when I do with with different businesses I have is, is this automatization of process, which, which is super important, we have the tools, we have amazing tools that we can use, you know, nowadays in terms of not only, you know, project management, but you know, client management, you know, marketing, you know, emailing, you know, tracking, when somebody gets into your website, you know, what to look at, you know, if it’s companies in the company, I mean, you have you have many many things that you can do, and the possibilities are endless and the possibilities are growing more and more things to AI which can help you with many different processes. So that’s one of the things that right now, I’m working on,

Andrej Zito 

what is the latest automation that you implemented? Kind of like get you excited like you were thinking like yeah, like now we’re going to save a lot of lot of time.

Patrick Martinez 

Oh, well, you know, if you talk about marketing is no the website tracking and this will connect With a CRM, you know, when when somebody enters your website fills up the form. Now, we have all the information about the person who enters the website, you know, which, which part of the website they’ve been at, you know, their Clift, if they have clicked if they have not clicked, you know, how long they’ve stayed in that page. And if they stay for, you know, so many different minutes in the legal translation, then you will receive, you know, a newsletter about legal translation. And if you’re a company, and your company is into marketing you’re going to receive, so different email automations that are gonna, that are going to help in terms of marketing and attracting new new clients. So that’s, that’s one of the things that are very interesting, you know, having this customer journey or this lead journey that you can, that you can build, which is super interesting and fascinating, what kind of data you can you can play with.

Andrej Zito 

You said very recently that you like to enjoy life. Does this mean to you? Or is this related to work life balance for you? Or does it have a completely different meaning to you?

Patrick Martinez 

Yes, yes, absolutely. I mean, for me, I really love what I do on a day to day side. I love my job. I really like what I do, you know, the business development, the different businesses. I really like what I do, but for me, the work life balance is is key. So you know, I I pick up my girls everyday at school. That’s non negotiable. You know, I I trained several times a week you know, I started I started something, which is very surprising to people. I started beekeeping two years ago, so

Andrej Zito 

I can’t imagine you wearing that. Weren’t you are not expecting that right? No. I haven’t noted like when we first met that you are like a surfer and no beekeeping. I started beekeeping a couple of years ago.

Patrick Martinez 

I have a few beehives in the, in the mountains. Why? Why did you start it? Right? So it’s a world that have always interested me. The worlds of of bees, and it’s very relaxing so so the place where I have my bees is in the mountain in the middle of nowhere, there’s no reception there. So something happens to me. Nobody can know. But uh, but yeah, when I’m there, there’s no, there’s no cell phone, there’s no so it’s, you know, just just for your mind. And it’s nice. I think it’s bees are very important for the world. And then, you know, having your own your own honey propolis and everything is something very, very nice to have. So, yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s one of the things I do. And then, you know, from time to time, I think it’s important to enjoy life, like, you know, tomorrow I’m going on a four day nor reception surf trip, for instance, just to, you know, disconnect from from everything. And I think sometimes it’s important when, when you when you live in such, you know, busy world and, you know, when you own a business or businesses, you never just connect them in this, you know, this is like the object of the evil, you know, it’s connected all the time. And, and so, but because I like it, right. I mean, it’s, it’s hard sometimes to, to disconnect, when you have your business when you created it, it’s like your, it’s like your baby, so you, you want to there’s work never stops, I could, you know, when, as I say to some of my friends, I could sit here forever, you know, getting food through Uber, and, and never, never stopped. Because when you are intrapreneur you have projects that you want to start to develop and you can, you can never stop so. So I think sometimes it’s, it’s important to just just stop and, and realise first of all what you have, you know, and then give things to, you know, whatever beliefs you have, and give things to life to, you know, to actually have, you know, businesses that are working well family, you know, children you know, health and, and just hit pause and enjoy the moment I think it’s for me it’s it’s it’s really key to do it and you don’t need to go you know, you can go on a walk with your dog with no cell phone and do that. So it’s it’s something that’s, that’s really important for for my day to day really and give sense to do what I do because if you only work for Yeah, money or success, I think is these are the wrong, the wrong motives. So, so that’s why when you ask, you know, what’s the goal for the future, for travelling wise, just, you know, keep doing what we do keep growing the way we’re growing and, you know, not having, you know, becoming like the multimillion, you know, having like 15 million euros in revenue. I mean, that’s, that’s not my goal, if it happens, great. Right. But it’s, it’s not a goal that is set in the, in, in the near future. I mean, for me, it’s, it’s, it’s more being able to keep this balance.

Andrej Zito 

What is something that people seem to misunderstand about you?

Patrick Martinez 

I would say, what I just explained, I would say that maybe people think that, that I do things for the wrong reasons, right? Because I’m so involved with the business, you could, you know, from outside, think that you do it for, you know, for the money on the for the, you know, the success or the you know, so. So I would say that’s, that’s one of them is understanding, you know, it’s just being involved in what you do. Or in my case, being involved in what I do, being so much involved in what I do is just because I love doing it, and also because it’s a means for me to be able to keep that lifestyle that I have right now,

Andrej Zito 

my notorious question, what do you think is wrong with our industry?

Patrick Martinez 

Oh. I think and I am maybe talking about more about the Spanish market is the way translation services don’t have the importance that they should have. Right? So so we have many clients. And this happens more in Spain and other countries that we work with, that you just clients that would come back to you. And we just focus on the cost of the service. And we’re not consider you know, the importance of the quality of the translation, the quality of the service. So it’s just a question of, you know, how important is for you have a multilingual communication or content? Or what’s the, the importance and the success of your project of the multilingual content? And the answer to this is huge. So the importance is huge, because you don’t have if your website is not well translated, if your contract has mistake, or if, you know, things don’t go through, but, you know, it looks like that’s the sensation that I have. Sometimes some companies don’t realise the importance or relevance of, of the translation services in their success. And it seems like this is happening more in, in Spain than in other countries, or that’s my experience, at least. We do have clients from, as I said, from, you know, all over Europe, I would say, more clients from outside Spain than in Spain. That’s, that’s what we do. But the experience that we’ve had is this, that sometimes clients don’t give the importance to the translation service that it should have.

Andrej Zito 

Why do you think it’s like that?

Patrick Martinez 

I don’t know. I think, you know, I think it’s just not realising that the, the International or the multilingual part of, of my business, or the way or the, the writing, or the editing of content of multilingual content is, you know, easy, you know, my secretary could do it. And now, with all the, you know, AI in empty, this problem is going to be much worse. Because, you know, I could, you know, put my content into google translator or a detail and, and get the result, why do I need a translation company that’s going to charge me money to do it, if I can get it for free or almost for free, right? So sometimes, it’s kind of hard to educate the client. And if you you know, and sometimes you don’t even try, just, you know, you want to go with it, go with it. And let’s, you know, and then see what happens, you know, eventually you will come back to us, because of a bad experience, because we’ve had clients like this, we’ve had clients come back to us that, you know, translated their contract with, you know, we have a very funny story where the client who had to reprint 200,000 tags on the product, because they use Google Trends. They’ve got a translation that maybe would have cost, like 15 euros, 15 euros, and it costs them. They told me like around 50,000 euros like that. And you know, that’s the perfect example, you know, of, you know, not giving the importance because it’s not in, in here, this, this particular example is not even the cost, because, you know, translating an a tag, what’s going to be like 15 years or 20 years, and several languages, because there’s no much not much content, but they didn’t consider that a professional, you know, should do it. And sometimes, clients don’t realise that the person doing the translation is not somebody who knows the language. It’s not somebody who, you know, like me was born in, you know, Spain, France, whatever, and who is bilingual notes, it’s a professional, it’s somebody who has, you know, some kind of training, not necessarily a BA in translation, I don’t care about that. But you have a training, or you have the experience you’ve done for many years, or you’re, you know, you understand what translation is. And that’s why you’re able to provide a good service. And clients don’t realise that they just think, you know, my, my neighbour is English, you know, and they gave him the contract, and he did it.

Andrej Zito 

Alright, Patrick, final words from you. If you could speak to the minds of everyone in the translation localization industry? What would you tell them? Oh, that’s a tough one.

Patrick Martinez 

Open, open, open microphone, I don’t know, if I’m gonna see something interesting enough for you to keep it in the conversation.

Andrej Zito 

Just whatever you feel like, you would say,

Patrick Martinez  I didn’t see there’s a plug in after an hour and 15 minutes. What would I tell the translation? Industry while is, you know, sometimes we’re the victims. I mean, I think sometimes the translation industry is the victim of its own players, and what they mean by that, you know, and I’ve seen it, you know, in my local market, when I mean, local market is, you know, translation agencies in around the region where we are, and it’s playing with, you know, who’s going to give the cheaper, or the cheapest translation and the cheapest translation, the cheapest translation. And that’s, and that’s something that, you know, I would, I would love, you know, companies to realise, and I do know that many companies already realised that, but maybe it’s more the smallest, and the smaller LSPs are very small LSPs that think, okay, the only way I have to compete is price. So, you know, I have to offer a ridiculous price, so that they can accept me, and they’re going to start working with me and what, and what this is creating is, is a market that, you know, it’s not it’s not working, because in the end, if you are an LSP, you have to pay your translators, right. Obviously, and if you don’t, you know, pay well, or pay in time, so then your translator is not happy, you’re gonna give a poor product and, you know, and this is something that’s, that’s not gonna, that’s not going to work. So, so I would say, you know, it’s about time, people start, you know, competing for the right reasons. Let’s compete with, you know, quality of service and not pricing.

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