Mittwoch, 25. Januar 2012

My first all-day seminar

Last Saturday, I held my very first all-day seminar as part of the continued education program of the BDÜ. Interestingly, I was not nervous at all, but rather really worried about the technological aspect, since I was giving an introduction to the CAT-Tool memoQ by Kilgray, and the location did have it installed on all PCs but not worked with it before. To put it briefly, yes, there were technical problems, which not even the IT specialist present was able to solve, but I found a workaround so we could continue with the seminar (we basically ignored the error, moved it out of sight and kept working).

The 11 participants were full of questions, some of which I was not able to answer, or at least not to the desired degree, mainly because they were support questions regarding problems with their installation of the program and I am not that computer-savy. 
Overall, though, I felt that I was able to explain the main features and functions well and pass on some of the tips and tricks I have acquired during my use of memoQ, and judging by the feedback I received, so did the participants. (One of the nicest things I heard was "I have attended three seminars on memoQ so far, and this was by far the best one"! What more could I ask for? (: )

Obviously I am totally thrilled about the positive reactions and the praise (and I hope you don't mind my reveling in it for a bit), since it was the first time I stood in front of  people for longer than 2 hours. Considering my background in the performing arts, it's no surprise that I had no problem with actually being in the spotlight, and I was glad that the routine kicked in and not the nerves. However, it is quite a different game when technology is involved and when the questions keep coming. 
I could have stopped the questions and saved them for the end, but had decided beforehand that I would take them immediately, since in my mind it makes more sense to answer them while you're talking about a certain point, anyway. It might not be so obvious or easy later. Of course, if I knew the question would be answered later on in the seminar, anyway, I said so. 

I was glad I had prepared a plan of action, i.e. a list of the things I wanted to address and above all the order in which I wanted to do so. Otherwise, the very first question would have thrown me completely off track. Having interpreted all last year for a train the trainer course did help with that, too, since I was able to use quite a few things from that course, the list just being one of them. 

Nevertheless, reviewing the day later on, I found a number of things I would have liked to talk about or shown, or spent more time on, or explained in more detail, or just done differently. But (hopefully) I'll learn from my experiences, and since I took quite a few notes, both during the seminar (e.g. good questions, changes in the order etc.) and during the review, and even now while working with memoQ, I'm sure the next time will be even better, and the time after that better again, and so forth.

Now all I need is another opportunity... So, anyone interested in an introduction to memoQ any time soon?

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