I turned 50 this summer. And since it has taken me half a century to get blogging, I feel compelled to explain to you why I’m only starting now.

The reason is ikänäköala. It’s a made-up word – and it’s Finnish, which makes it seem even more unreal. I formed it from three real Finnish words:

ikä = age
näkö = sight
ala = area, field, branch

There are also two genuine Finnish compound nouns contained in it:

ikänäkö = presbyopia (the type of vision that comes with age)
näköala = vista, view

The point is that it’s only now, after 23 years in the translation industry and more than twice that on earth, that I feel I have something to say. Or, rather, that I feel confident and qualified enough to say it. Finnish people tend to speak up only when invited, or when they can contribute something new, different or useful. It’s a tall order and explains why we often remain silent.

Translation has been my source of income, my professional playground and my private pleasure for more than half my life. I get frequent opportunities to watch and listen to smart industry colleagues from all around the world. We talk, share and learn. And yet we leave so much unsaid, since there are always conflicting business interests to respect.

But there is also a lot of common ground to cover. Through this blog, I want to give you an insight into the thoughts and challenges of a managing director in charge of a top-100 translation company. I also aim to show you how I manage to run STP while keeping various other professional and personal plates spinning.

All of my observations have grown out of my own experience and – you guessed it – age. I hope that you, along with all our employees, clients and suppliers, will find them valuable and be able to apply them in a positive way to your own situation.

I will post on a new topic every first Thursday of the month, for the next nine months and maybe beyond. The first real post, on balancing professional and personal life, will be out on 7 October. Subscribe to our blog now, if you haven’t already, to have it delivered straight to your inbox.

Until then,

Anu Carnegie-Brown
Managing Director, STP Ltd

Director’s Cut