And in the beginning there was…Dialogue

Born out of keen desire to help people communicate and do business in different languages, Dialogue was founded in 1994 by Rob and Nicola in Swindon. The name Dialogue resulted from a brainstorming session in a local pub with friends and family to find a word that represented the company: the 2-way channel of communication that infuses everything we do.

Since gaining Renault as our first client we’ve expanded to service clients globally, opening new divisions to cope with increasing client demand: translations, cultural coaching and voiceovers, amongst others. Cathy joined in 2007 to drive the translations side of the business and the rest is history. The fact that we’ve grown mainly through word of mouth over 20 years demonstrates the key achievement we’re proud of: we do a great job for our clients, they pass that on, and that makes us very happy! A few words from the owners:


Rob Shimwell

Head of Training:

I’d been doing it for years. Helping business people to communicate better and succeed better in the workplace “Why can’t we do this on our own?” asked my wife. We could! With our first client Renault on board, we quickly expanded from our base in Swindon to become a national player in language training and haven’t looked back since. Despite providing services on an international scale, I still get goose bumps when my students ‘get it’: I’m still a teacher at heart. I’m surrounded by a team that ensures we all get to the right place at the right time and I couldn’t do it without them.


Nicola Shimwell

Head of Client Services:

Having spent two years in Frankfurt, trying to learn German certainly gave and still gives me an insight and understanding of the challenges that our students have. This and Rob’s teaching experience set the ethos of the company: that was first and foremost teaching for ‘real’ communication and dealing head-on with the realities of language training within a busy work environment. We wanted a flexible, understanding team to be the heart of Dialogue. We are only half of the story. Over the last 20 years we have gone from being a two-man band using spreadsheets to a global organisation, but ensuring that we never lose sight of the human touch. I am very proud of what Dialogue has become; here’s to another 20 years!


Cathy Branson

Head of Translation:

For me, a successful business has always been about the people behind it. That’s what drew me to Dialogue. It was Rob and Nicola’s passion, expertise and sense of fun which made me know over 10 years ago that this was a company I wanted to be part of. Having run my own translation agency, I came in to develop Dialogue’s fledgling translation arm to one that works with blue chip companies globally. Getting a translation right for our clients is about attention to detail, listening, and offering the right solution for them. It’s what sets us apart from most other agencies. When our clients come back with the thumbs up and recommend us to other colleagues because of the work we do, it still makes me glow! We couldn’t do any of this without our team of dedicated project managers and translators who make the magic happen – thank you to all of you!