I recently read a really great article in the Chicago Tribune about medical transcription. I encourage anyone interested in medical transcription to check it out!
While I was reading the article, though, I had an interesting train of thought run through my mind. Medical transcription is such a specialized field. Does learning it benefit other aspects of your life too? The answer I came to was yes, absolutely. Not convinced? Here are 3 everyday life things I’ve learned or improved by becoming a medical transcriptionist.
1. Understand almost anyone speaking or attempting to speak English.
In the article, they discuss the fact that patient cases are always interesting. If you don’t believe me, you need to hear these 3 words: toe-licking demon. Anyone who has taken our courses is probably nodding along right now. If you haven’t taken our medical transcription/editor course yet but that intrigued you, you are likely going to be fascinated by a lot of the cases we have in our MTE course. The interesting reports will expose you to a wide variety of medical terms and subject matter. Your vocabulary will expand significantly, and that can help you to better understand those around you.
In addition to that expanded vocabulary, you will also gain significant exposure to a ton of different accents. I used to have a very difficult time understanding individuals who had accents different than the typical Canadian and American ones. Now, thanks to my Career Step medical transcription training, I can now actually understand a wide variety of accents! That Australian customer service person I used to have to say “pardon” to every 30 seconds? That wonderful Middle Eastern stranger next to me on the train I used to have to just smile and nod my head at? Now, we can carry on great conversations. See? Learning to understand a variety of accents is very applicable, even outside your job as an MT.
2. Have some extra compassion.
Another thing learning transcription has given me a lot more of is compassion. You are listening to reports of people who may be having the very worst day of their lives. While it is essential to distance yourself emotionally from the content matter in order to keep from burning out, this job encourages you to withhold judgment of others around you and to realize the person across from you at the coffee shop, store, or hospital is, indeed, a person and deserves respect and a little compassion. Nothing is ever as it seems.
3. Be a better listener.
The last skill was one I was least surprised about. Since taking the medical transcription course, I’ve noticed I am much better at listening to those around me. Being a better listener improves your relationships. Medical transcription teaches you the importance of listening closely and of thinking critically about what you are hearing. Those skills come in handy with friends, partners, business associates, and most especially when buying that huge TV at a big box store with a pushy salesman. You will no longer be trapped in to those outrageous warranty programs that double the price of the product. (Okay. Okay. That was a joke!) It’s likely your listening skills won’t give you magical powers, but they will certainly help you to interact more effectively with those around you.
Those are just 3 skills I’ve seen spill over in positive ways into my everyday life. What are some other positive skills or habits you’ve developed from learning medical transcription and editing? Leave yours in the comments below!