Riviera helps a vertically integrated agriculture and consumer products firm deliver time-sensitive, confidential and delicate messages with care and agility.

Agriculture • Consumer Products
English • Spanish • Portuguese
Event Type
All Hands Meeting • One on One Meeting

Our office was contacted on a Tuesday afternoon with a request for (mostly) Spanish interpreting the next day (Wednesday) around mid-morning. The client, a vertically integrated agriculture and consumer products business, operates in 10 states, with 13 production facilities and 64 retail locations. The nature of the event was highly confidential, and could not be disclosed until the interpreters arrived on site at their agriculture production facility to deliver the service. The only information we received was that it would be an HR/personnel related presentation, with a couple possible (short) one on one meetings afterwards, and that the majority of the staff was Spanish speaking, with one possible Portuguese speaker. 


Typically, our team will request reference materials from clients - resources, slide decks, handouts, agendas or speech outlines - in order for our team to prepare. Preparation is a key part of our process: in order to ensure that translated messages are imparted with maximum fidelity to the original, vocabulary and terminology research, in addition to relevant current and historical events, facts and figures all factor in to an interpreter’s preparation. In this case, our team only had a broad topic to go on: we would be working an HR/personnel related meeting. 

To compound the murky nature of the event, the request came on short notice. In most businesses, and in life in general, short lead times can be a challenge - our business is no different. But, with a dedicated team and deep bench of linguists, Riviera is always ready to turn client requests around quickly, even on short notice, and in this instance, with limited information.  

Lastly, we had the issue of one potential Portuguese speaker. While the client wanted to be sensitive to all, and uphold their company's values of diversity and inclusion, there is always a balancing act between ideals and practical (cost and logistical) considerations.


We selected a real “A” team for this event, with multi talented linguists who have extensive experience in agriculture, HR and employment matters, going the extra mile to secure them on short notice. While going in with limited information is not ideal, an experienced team with deep subject matter expertise can make it work. Despite standard use of NDA’s and ethical obligations of confidentiality, situations like this can arise with some regularity. As it turns out, the company was closing down this particular production facility and our team was tasked with translating the news of the closure, layoffs and transition/severance packages to the staff. 

To resolve the issue of the one potential Portuguese speaker, our event manager made a point to staff a linguist who worked in multiple language pairs: English, Spanish and Portuguese, to potentially interpret a summary of the meeting to any Portuguese speakers after the entire staff was addressed, or conduct a small group session, if necessary. Upon arrival at the facility, it was discovered that there were indeed team members (some of whom were thought to be Spanish speakers) that were native Portuguese speakers. While they got the gist of the presentation with their limited Spanish and English skills, they were able to sit down for a small group meeting with management and the English//Portuguese linguist to go over the finer points of the meeting to better understand next steps.

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