Sign Language Interpreters Reflect Business Reputations

What is a sign language interpreter going to cost?

Often when a customer calls MT & Associates | Sign Language Interpreting Practice their first question is, “What will sign language interpreting services cost me?”  As a business,  do you consider exclusively the monetary cost or also the monetary impact of a service partner on your business?  Sign Language interpreters reflect business reputations so you should consider quality first.

How do you want to be known by your customers or community?

An article written by Business Focus Magazine suggests that due to increased competition a business’s reputation is more important than ever.  The article suggests ten (10) ways that reputation is measured.  Adaptations of these measures and application as to how sign language interpreting services reflect business reputations are listed below numbered 1-10.

  1. Ethics: the organization behaves ethically, is admirable, is worthy of respect, and is trustworthy
  2. Employees/workplace: the organization has talented employees
  3. Financial performance: the organization is financially strong
  4. Leadership: the organization is a leader rather than a follower, and is innovative
  5. Management: the organization has high quality management
  6. Social responsibility: the organization recognizes social responsibilities, and supports good causes
  7. Customer focus: the organization cares about and is strongly committed to customers.
  8. Quality: the organization offers high quality products and services
  9. Reliability: the organization stands behind its products and services, and provides consistent service
  10. Emotional appeal: it is an organization I feel good about and are they kind

Example: Choosing a Cell Phone Service ProviderSign Language Interpreters Reflect Business Reputations

How a Service Provider Meets Your Business Needs


  1. Features- Will they be able to meet your needs?
  2. Endurance- Can it keep up with your needs and adapt over time as your needs change?
  3. Reviews/Testimonials- Do other users have a positive experience?
  4. Service- Will it work as promised, and will it be a consistent and reliable service?
  5. Price- If the service is exactly what you need and want then the price is worth it.
If the cell phone service fails to match the quality standards of your business, does this affect your business?
  1. Features- In order to save money, you chose fewer features.

Ex. You cannot pull up a customer’s PDF because of lack of storage, and the customer needs you to get back to them ASAP.

  1. Endurance- You chose a cheaper phone and the battery life so there are constant concerns and issues
  2. Reviews/Testimonials- They were less than positive but now it’s impacting the quality of your business operations.
  3. Service- It’s not reliable and continues to fail when talking to customers:
    • Customers likely become frustrated with you, not your cell phone service.
    • The time it takes to reconnect or resolve concerns doesn’t allow you time to focus on new business, and now your customers and you are both frustrated.
    • You lack the control to make it better since you are not an expert in cell phone service, and you’re “stuck” with this service.
  4. Price- You saved some money, which was great, but now you find yourself with customers who
    • Can’t reach you,
    • Have challenges leaving you a message,
    • Can’t hear you,
    • Can’t get what they need in a time manner, and/or
    • Went to your competitor because they didn’t want to go through the trouble.

Like Cell Phone Service, Sign Language Interpreters Reflect Business Reputations

Service partners, such as sign language interpreting services, are chosen by you.  Who you select to be a partner is based on your businesses ethics and standards.  If profit is your number one priority, and not level of service, then price should be the only selection material you use.

Consider the situation that occurred during Hurricane Irma that the world watched unfold.  The county stated they didn’t have time to locate a qualified certified sign language interpreter, and you can see the impact of this decision in the video below.

While watching, consider:

  1. The safety of the Deaf community in the path of IRMA expecting lifesaving information
  2. The legal liability of the county
  3. The interpreter is not considered at fault, the county is.
  4. The outraged Deaf community posted opinions on social media and contacted news stations requesting the county apologize. (Will an apology fully repair the reputation?)
  5. The time now spent on resolving the concern.
Hearing Impaired Community Says Sign Language Interpreter Botched Irma Messages

The story even become the joke of late night television, check out this clip from the Daily Show.  See more information on our blog about a business’s perspective on the IRMA interpreters.

Deaf Customers are the Same as Hearing Customers

It’s uncertain why it’s common practice to only consider price when locating sign language interpreting services, or why it’s assumed that Deaf customers are so different than hearing customers.  There is no difference with the exception of one being able to hear and the other not.  If services are not up to par, it will impact their view of your business by association, and Deaf customers will talk with family and friends (Deaf and Hearing).  They will post reviews, and they will express their opinion on social media.  Sign language interpreters reflect business reputations.  It’s up to you to determine whether potential cost savings is worth a potential negative impact to your business in a competitive market.




Photo Credit:

MT & Associates | Sign Language Interpreting Practice BBB Business Review