The fact that I have worked for Joe for many, many years, I believe speaks volumes. In fact, I’ve only just realised that this will actually be my 20th year!! Time flies as they say. I cannot deny that I did struggle at the beginning having never done this type of work previously but because Joe was always so encouraging and supportive, I managed to get through the challenges.
When I first started working with Joe (at her own home!), we transcribed from cassettes, which when I look back now, the sound quality was awful and it took forever to fast forward and rewind manually. I didn’t even have broadband, there was no Google, email, Skype, just a good old-fashioned telephone and a dictionary. I realise that I’m beginning to sound like I’m very old! No, I would say experienced but young at heart!
Now life is very, very different and the digital age has transformed working with McGowan Transcriptions and so many things have changed, for the better, that’s for sure.
For anyone who is thinking about working with McGowan Transcriptions, I would say that it is absolutely perfect for someone with a family, for someone who likes to have the freedom to work the days and times they want, to work weekends, evenings, whenever it suits you, just as long as you meet the deadlines which can vary from a deadline in three hours or even a week or more.
On a practical level, you don’t even need to get dressed in the morning if you don’t want to, I am quite often at my desk typing away in my dressing gown until lunchtime as I’ve been so absorbed in a recording that I haven’t even noticed the time!
The other transcribers who work with Joe are also only an email away if you ever need help or advice, particularly if you have a word that you just cannot decipher, somebody nearly always manages to come up with the answer.
I have learnt so much since I started transcribing. It is very difficult to think of a subject that I haven’t actually produced a transcript for, but some of them are more memorable and more challenging than others. Sometimes they make me laugh out loud and other times, you hear such sad stories that they do reduce me to tears.
This job is all about the respondents who give their precious time to talk about various subjects and it’s up to the transcribers to accurately put their words into text, even when sometimes you have four or more very vocal people in a group, it is important that we capture all the words that are spoken even if it’s all at the same time!
Just to go back even further in time, I did actually learn to type on a manual typewriter, so I am very grateful that technology has moved on so much since I was a teenager; otherwise, I’m not sure my fingers would still be in action on a keyboard!!!
So, thank you to Joe for the last 20 years – I bet she feel olds too now – it’s been a pleasure working with you and throughout that time, if there has ever been an emergency or a personal or health problem, Joe has always been so understanding and helpful. The same ethos applies to work where Joe always remains so calm when disaster strikes, as can happen with technology or just life in general. What more could you ask for?
Written by Shelly Tarling