A 100 Watt Light Bulb Moment – Voice Mail – No Problem

Have your voice mail transcribe by a US owned and operated transcription company for the same cost as other companies (Service starts 4/1/2010).  Contact me now to set up your account!

I have spent a lot of time marketing my transcription company and all the possibilities we can do for you.  I have added programs and system to allow me to accept just about every type of audio file out there at any time day or night – and get them transcribed for you with quality in a timely fashion.  I thought I had it covered, then a client/friend gave me a light bulb moment.

This light bulb moment allows me to expand my business and features I currently offer clients.  Will I make a fortune – probably not.  But if it helps my clients, and new clients, get on with their day and meet their own goals – then I have a win-win situation going all the way around.

I researched and found that YES, I can do this too.  I can offer the service to those who have their voice files transcribed for a comparable rate and return the transcripts to them in a comparable time frame as those other companies that do it, and with any luck, with better quality.

So I had a light bulb moment.  As of April 1, 2010, CLK Transcription, Inc. will in fact offer transcription of voice mail as a separate feature from the everyday transcription of seminars, conferences, interviews, phone conversations, webinars, and everything else audio that we handle.

For existing clients, the voice mail would be noted on your regular invoice with the number of calls and total billed in addition to the usual transcription we do for you.  For new clients, if you choose to only have your voice mail transcribed, your invoice will show the number of calls transcribed and the total billed in an easy to read format.

Contact me to set up your account today.  This service will begin April 1, 2010.   And yes, if you refer a friend to CLK Transcription during March 2010, there is still a $5.00 reward for both you and your referral (for their first over $15.00 and your next invoice period.)

And finally, thanks to flipping the light switch for me – you know who you are!!!!

Yes, it will be a new undertaking and a new path on my journey, but one I look forward to taking.

If interested in this new service  provided by CLK Transcription effective 4/1/2010, contact me at CarolLee@clktranscription.com.

A Transcriptionist’s Path…The Journey of a Woman in Business

I have not always been a transcriptionist/transcription company owner.

When I was younger I thought how wonderful it would be to be a teacher.  Then I began to write and thought it would be wonderful to have my poetry published, and when I did, it was great but I had to be honest with myself – not everyone likes poetry and my writing style is not polished and I did not have the patience to polish it in order to support myself and a family.  I still wanted to do those things, but had to understand how to do both in a way that was suitable for me and my skills.

My “career” path led me to try my hand at equestrian registration and monitoring, banking and brokerage, and health care – and then ultimately transcription.  I have not always been a transcriptionist/transcription company owner, but the path I took has assisted me in my journey and beyond.

I started in The Jockey Club many moons ago.  My first REAL job – registering thoroughbred horses for racing, and working on their export/import documentation.  During that time, while working my part-time job at a Burger King, I was approached by an employment agency executive and asked to apply for a position he had at Daiwa Securities America.  He told me he saw something in me that would make me shine.  (Thanks Mario S. for giving me a real shot.)  I LOVED it.  I worked my way up and held a position as assistant compliance/new accounts/registration administrator and got to know people from all over the world in all areas of business and finance.  The people were fantastic, the job was wonderful and educational, and I was respected for the work I did.

After an illness, I found myself in awe of the medical industry.  Not for the hands-on side.  I knew I did not have the talent for that.  I appreciate and hold great respect for those who have this gift, and a gift it is, but I could never do what they do.  But I do have a talent for organization, research, record management, and an eye for detail in documentation.  So I handled medical charts for home care agencies, handled their reconciliations of receipts/payments, scheduled home care workers…and again found that I loved the job.  It was while doing this that I found my mentors.

Barbara Rossoff and Michele Tiger of Omega Home Health Care taught me so much and allowed me to grow both personally and professionally.  They allowed me to see that the one thing I wanted to do with my career was to own my own business and to do what I know I can do well – research and record management, utilize my skill for details and documentation.   I wanted to be a proud professional woman in business owning and running my own business.

Yes, there were jobs held consecutively and other jobs here and there that have given me the experience I needed to move on to my goal- and each one taught me more.  They were never medial to me. I took many continuing education courses, seminars, attended conferences, read everything I could get my hands on, on every topic I could think of…wanting to know something about everything…nothing was considered mundane or boring.  I wanted to explore the English language – the spoken word – the why and how they were used – the meaning of each one used individually and each one used with others in the thoughts of many.  I wanted to learn the many facets of documentation and the importance of the details that others require in their profession.  I worked hard to grow professional and personally.  I kept my goal in sight.

Now as a transcription company owner, I can use the path I took and each personal lesson learned along the way to better myself.  I can manage my own books and records.  I can organize my life, my office, and my home environment where it works best for me.  I can use the path to assist me with the transcriptions I do – the job I do,  to better what I offer my clients.

If I get an interview or conference or seminar with a topic on banking – I know where to start.  Health care or medical reports – I got that covered.  The details of the format requested and why it MUST be done the way it is requested.  The importance of documenting and detailing the words of others.  Everyday conversations about anything – it all means more to me.  I listen to the words and understand what is being said – not just each word spoken that forms a sentence.  I learned that what people say and HOW they say it are equally important.  And what I don’t know – I have the research skills to find it or the ability to admit that I can’t.  I know I have a base of professionals to guide me through the process and I know how to use the tools given me to do the best I can.

My path has led me to where I am today.  I pull from my path daily to attempt to give my clients the best product possible.

And teaching  is still with me.  I assist transcriptionists who are independent contractors, who have their dream and who have spent time and money to start their path in this wonderful career choice we have made.   I enjoy growing with them

The most important part of my path was the ability to understand that perfection is a dream and not a goal, so when I miss my mark, I work to improve and correct my steps, but I understand I will trip and sometimes fall.  My goal is to remember that and just do my best and get up and keep on learning during my journey.

My path may have begun in one direction and made many turns along the way – but each turn has created a new resting place for a bit of knowledge that I can go back and rely on, and the path has made the journey all that much more exciting. I am a proud professional woman in business.

I wouldn’t want it any other way.

Transcriptionist – it’s not just what I do – it is who I am!!!!!

Follow, Friend, Connections…

I am positive that social media can keep us in touch with those we care about in a direct but less intrusive way than say a weekly coffee clutch with a family member/friend that after 5 minutes you wish you could show the door…I mean we love them but…

I am positive that social media can also help businesses grow.  They can educate us on items we thought we knew or didn’t think we should know.  They can be our best friends for our company’s growth and reputation.  It can talk more about our work than the actual work itself in some cases.

I am selective on who I follow on Twitter.  I am selective on who I “friend” on Facebook.  I am even more selective on my connections with LinkedIn.  Why you ask?

Because Facebook is friends and family with a smattering of people I associate with for my business.  I added professional people to this after trying to keep it just family and friends (always cautious when I mix the personal with business) but adding the professionals and “knowing” them and their “thoughts” as well as the information they share adds to my research library for the work I may end up doing for them.  I also find many of them to be really great and fascinating people regardless of whether I will ever work for them again (but please send work).

If they interview about a new drug, a celebrity, lifestyle possibility, financial opportunities, great museums, parenting topics, a new marketing strategy, et cetera, chances are they also mentioned it on FB and I can find that seemingly unintelligible word somewhere in the information they posted.

LinkedIn is just for clients or potential clients.  I certainly would not my friends and family coming on there and mentioning how they saw me at the grocery store with my hair a mess and no makeup on…it is irrelevant to the business plan I have for myself.  I like the idea my clients, past and present, can post a recommendation (or not) and I have a central location to send people to rather than request it repeatedly when necessary.  My clients are too busy to interrupt for a recommendation every month, so… I also find I can more effectively talk about my business and my business plan with other professionals without “personality” coming through from others who think they may be doing me a favor.

Twitter is a different animal.  I do follow my business associates, and theirs (as many as I can find) – I enjoy being able to spread their words and their opinions – especially if I agree although not mandatory.   I follow friends because it is a quick update one their day without having to pick up the phone and talk for hours on end.  And again, it gives me insight into their personalities better than the “watch what I say” attitude on FB.  I follow others who I have found to have similar interests, similar attitudes, and just plain interesting Tweets.

Twitter also allows me to market to a wider audience IF my tweets happen to get re-tweeted or mentioned elsewhere.  I have not been so lucky with this so far, but lucky enough I have to say.  But I Tweet what means most to me and what I find interesting and what someone somewhere might find interesting.  I certainly do not care if the world does not revolve around my Tweets, but an occasional mention here and there is enough to start.

I am also positive that there are just some things I don’t need to know…for my business or for me personally or even for my friends and colleagues.  Much of this is found only on Twitter because of the vast amount of Tweets sent on any given day – hell any given minute.  I also know that unlike LinkedIn or FB, if you don’t follow people, they can get downright offended on Twitter.  But seriously folks, why would I follow someone who just wanted to share minute by minute their day, when I don’t know them or anything about them except that they walk down this street, talk to this person, and eat this food.  And I certainly do not need to know how big their “deck” is, or who they slept with last night.  I promise I won’t share this with you either – and not because my life is so uninteresting either – just because I really don’t think too many out there will care either.

So, yes I am selective on who I follow and who I friend and who I connect with.   I am not saying you have to say something constructive to me all the time, or meaningful to me personally all the time – but something that would be interesting to others I know so I can reTweet or repost…something that may come in handy in the future, something that makes me go “hum”, something that teaches me something about something I knew little about, something to lift my day – just something about SOMETHING once in a while would be nice.   Just splash it in between the other Tweets and you will have my attention.

Oh and of course, if you need a transcription of your words – it doesn’t matter what you say, I am here to help.  I will even follow you and repost, retweet, and help in the marketing of  it for you.

Because in the end, the idea that you said it and I transcribed it MAY just get passed along as well.  Because isn’t that what social media marketing is all about anyway?  You want what you say to be talked about – positive or negative?  I know I want what I say to be talked about.  And we both want what we do to be known.  And no one needs to know that you slept with a celebrity want-to-be and regretted it.  That can be our secret.  (See my views on confidentiality)

Happy Social Media Connections, Friending, and Tweeting everyone.  Hope to read you soon.


In my business, confidentiality is a must.  I believe that all business has some areas of confidentiality that must be maintained.

Recently I have come across individuals that feel everything in business should be known – legal, contractual, employment, etc.  At the same time they will state that legal, contractual and employment information should remain confidential – of course when it applies to something they are involved with only.  Double Standard – ABSOLUTELY.

The shareholders, or members of a corporation are entitled to information, however ensuring accurate and detailed and complete information is given is utmost importance.  When confidentiality is breached – the risk of misinformation inaccurate information, and personal attitudes added to the information is rampant.  Information – whether it is a corporates board meeting, a journalists writings, or a topic of a round table discussion should only be provided by those who can maintain the integrity of the information and only when they want the information released.

I believe when confidence is destroyed by a breach – any and all cost associated with the fallout should be the responsibility of the breacher.

Whether the information is sensitive or not is not the issue.  If it is deemed confidential – regardless of someone else’s opinion of the information – it should remain confidential until such time the release will do no harm – big or small.

This information should never be released without full knowledge of any board, administration or legal entity, or any originator of the work, and when released should be released in full detail in an unbiased manner, and with the attitude of author/developer of the material only.

In my world, promising confidences is giving my word and my integrity.   My work depends on it, and so does the work of my clients.

So, when asked – do I sign a  confidentiality agreement – YOU BET.  But my confidence is implied with any project I accept, whether you have an agreement or not.

Recruiting Clients and Projects.

For the months of October and November – new referrals – whether referred by another journalist already affiliated with CLK, or referred by Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or this blog – will receive $5.00 off their first invoice of $15.00 or more.   If referred by a journalist already affiliated with CLK, that journalist will get the same $5.00 off their next invoice.

I am constantly recruiting new clients and projects.  Being a hyper small to midsized business owner with aspirations to become a larger sized business owner, it is a necessary thing to do.   It is also necessary to remain competitive as well as keep my rates low, so I resort to the marketing strategies that I have learned from the very clients that I service.

When transcribing for them I learn so much – from round table discussions on the most current medical research and oncology, to how plastic bottles may not be good for your child, to how best to use social media to grow your business.

When we transcribe, we do not only type what we hear, but we try to understand what we are hearing as well so that the final transcript makes sense and is not just a garbled mess of words spoken by a fast talking, false starter, hesitant thinking, bad connection, low volume speaker.   Some projects take a bit longer due to quality of audio, but the added bonus is we learn from it as well.

Do we make errors?  Yes.  Regrettably we do.  But we learn from them as well.  And we always take the criticism just as graciously as we take the recommendations.  I did not have to admit that – but I did…We may not be perfect but we are one of the best US transcription companies out there.

So, I am recruiting new clients and projects again. To grow, to learn, and to assist.  New clients must want quality transcripts.  Must have audio that ranges form 1 minute to 10 hours or more.  Must have audio that ranges from clear to difficult on a range of subjects – and yes, ESL speakers are fine.  Must have tight TATs or room to breath TATs.  PDF conversions are fine too.  We even do voice mail!

Must be willing to be communicated with throughout the project if necessary.  And most of all must want to have their transcripts done for less in most cases, and quickly to help you meet your deadline.

So I repeat – For the months of October and November – new referrals – whether referred by another journalist already affiliated with CLK, or referred by Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or this blog – will receive $5.00 off their first invoice of $15.00 or more.   If referred by a journalist already affiliated with CLK, that journalist will get the same $5.00 off their next invoice.

Now some may say $5.00 doesn’t seem like a lot of money – but in today’s market $5.00 is quite a bit of money for those of us who understand a dollar saved here and a dollar saved there is money in the bank.  And saving money on our already reasonable rates and getting a service that saves you time is priceless.

Want to know more about CLK?  Visit https://www.clktranscription.com, or you may view our recommendations at http://www.linkedin.com/in/clktranscription.  We are also on Twitter @clk_shortcake and Facebook CarolLee Streeter Kidd.

Contact me for details.  We can start your project – big or small immediately.  And remember to mention where you heard about us and save even more.

Happy Fall everyone.  Hope to speak with you soon and possibly assist you with your transcription needs.

A New Project

I love when a client- new or “seasoned” to CLK comes on and asks ‘Do you have time?’

I love it because it means work.  I love it because it means they have work.  I love it even more because it means I have the opportunity to take on their project – big or small – and beat a challenge.

Whether it is the 5 minute audio “I need back before noon”, or the 8 hour project “I need back in four days.”  I look at the work already waiting to be done (actually in progress, rarely ever work just hanging out.) and I see what is coming and get a bit nervous, but always accept the challenge.  I have yet to let myself down – thus not letting my client down.

Have I ever blown a TAT – yes I have.  And it is hard to admit, but I have.  However more times than not  – I have beaten them.  (Been some time now since a blown TAT came out of my company.  Lose one client because of one blown TAT and you learn real quick.)  Partly because I have organized my schedule much better when taking on work and projects, partly because of the wonderful team I have with CLK.  Put those two things together and we make magic.

So, when I got the call from a West Coast journalist asking if I can handle a quick turn around on several interviews on an ongoing basis coupled with the Midwest University’s project of multiple hours of audio to be transcribed – I jumped and accepted both.

This means great things – they have work, I have work, and my team has work.  Once again, we get to show our stuff and pat ourselves on the back when done and then get right back to the next new project and deadline.

I have to say, there is nothing like the US Transcriptionist.  We enjoy our family, our friends, our contacts – but mostly we enjoy our work.

Your best is all you have…

I am amazed when people say “I can’t do this.”

When trying something new, just give it your best shot – then you have given it your all and you did your best.  You did not fail.

If you feel you CAN’T do something, to me it means you DON”T want to do something, because your best is all that is asked.  Let others decide that they don’t want you to accomplish your best in the future, but it is up to them to decide that.

So give everything your best shot and no matter what the outcome is, it is your best and you have succeeded.  If your best is not the desired output for others, that is fine – accept it and move on. Their best may not be desirable for you either.

Be honest with yourself and others – either you will give everything your best and succeed every time, or you really didn’t want to try it at all.

I Love What I Do!!!

I started my road to a career the same as many people – Burger King – and went to Banking and Brokerage, to record management for Healthcare – to organizing small business offices to transcription.  All steps blended together well and I have to admit – I absolutely love what I do now.

I love the idea of organizing my time, managing my work flow, and learning new things everyday.  I love being able to offer quality work, wow the client, and be able to know I am helping someone in their career as well.

I have had the opportunity to transcribe round table discussions, conference (days long), one on one interviews, medical reports, even resumes.  And the topics – WOW – from financial to parenting to sex education.

I have trained individuals to transcribe and enter this wonderful field and have seen many move on because it was not for them.

Everyday I learn more about myself, about other people, and about “things”.  Just anything.  Because I am a want to know it all – I want to know everything I can about whatever it is I hear.  And I love to teach others and help them find the fun in their workload as well.

So I love what I do – and I wouldn’t want to do anything else – just more of it.   I look forward to tomorrow and what new “adventure” it brings.

Confidentiality. If you abuse it, are you willing to pay the price?

This is an important topic for me, as in my business, it means everything.  We transcribe what we hear, and generate a fine report for our clients, but if we were to take that information and announce it to the world, what would be the sense in bothering with returning to and billing the client at all

Our client’s work would be a waste of time.

Some think the word and the meaning behind it is a legal play to cover-up whatever they are not entitled to know.  Some hear the word confidential and think it makes what they know worth more to others and are willing to sell it for a price. Others hear the word and find ways to turn information into rumors, using it to personally sway the thoughts of others to one side or another, not allowing a fair opinion be developed on the issues.  And then, well, some just don’t think at all.

If taking a position where confidentiality is expected, even without a document stating so, use common sense that the information is confidential due to the consequences of incomplete, inaccurate information being leaked, or the leakage of confidential material being the destruction of someone else’s work – just to get started.

Just because you know something, doesn’t mean it is your responsibility to share this information with others.

So, before you share, care.  Think about what the outcome will be when speaking on an item that belongs – yes belongs – to someone else.

It is not secret.  It is not a cover-up.  It is a matter of business.  It is a matter of responsibility.  It is a matter of morality.  It’s a matter of professionalism.

Confidential information is confidential for a reason.  Spilling the beans could and most often does, have some sort of monetary recourse for everyone involved.  Are you willing to pay the fee?

At CLK Transcription, we offer every client, from the student to the journalist to the corporations, a confidentiality agreement.   We also deal with clients who understand the importance of confidentiality and respect the meaning themselves.
We believe that if you don’t respect your own work, how will anyone ever respect yours.


Doctors, Pharmacists and Medications – Oh My…

I started my business with medical transcription, and prided myself in the deep knowledge and love of the pharmacy – medications.  I didn’t have it in me to attend school for medicine, but I love research and education regardless.  I have since moved on to love my non-medical clients and workload even more because I found it broadens my chances of learning even more on many more topics.

But I digress.

Recently a very close friend of mine and I were talking about the medications he was on.  All for heart condition and diabetes more or less – cholesterol, triglycerides etc.  We were also talking about how his blood values were not changing after all the lifestyle changes he had done over the years and he was tired etc.  Being a typical male, he just went through day by day not thinking about why, instead just being frustrated and aggravated.

Then one day on the news he saw a broadcast about one of his medications.  It stated simply – ‘Zetia should be taken at night’.  That got him thinking, hence our talk.   When we did research together into his medications we found some other very important items that he should consider – one – that his Welchol should not be taken with any other medication at all.  Now mind you – he had been taking all his medications as directed as far as dosing, but all together at one time.  Why?  Because the doctors never told him any different.

And each time he went to the doctor for blood work, and to complain about tired, achy bones et cetera, never once did they mention any of this.

I have to ask – how many people read those inserts that come with their medicine?  I know all I read is the reactions/interactions portion.  I trust my doctor to tell me, and in fact mine does, but apparently, some just figure we read the inserts on when to take and even food interactions.  For example, did you know grapefruit should not be eaten or drank by those on many heart medications?

Now my friend has gone to the pharmacy and spoke with the pharmacist who was able to work with him to get a schedule that fits his lifestyle to better manage his medications.  Will this make a difference in his blood work values?  Who knows.  But as it is, the medications he was taken all at one time needed to be split up so that he was taking his meds as prescribed, but at different times per day.

Already he is feeling empowered by the knowledge that something has changed and there is a chance things will change in his blood work as well.

I am just wondering, with all the talk about health care reform – if better management and instruction to the patients that already have insurance is going to be included?  Because that alone can save money and lives.

As for my friend – I will update when the results of his next tests come back.  It should be interesting…

Update:  After several months on the new schedule taking his medications as prescribed, but with the additional knowledge of interactions, et cetera, the blood values have improved and so has his feeling of tiredness and achiness.  The most interesting thing I have noticed is that upon speaking to his doctors about his medications, they are each only concerned with what THEY have prescribed and not how they may interact with meds prescribed by other specialists and the schedule for taking the individual doses prescribed.  This has to change – for him and for everyone.  It not only saves money, but saves a lifestyle and lives of so many people when the doctors take the time to work together for the good of the patient.