You’re a new Sacramento area court reporter and aren’t sure how to get started. Don’t worry, we’re here to help and so are the more than 30,000 reporters nationwide. Connect with them on social media and through blogs like ours to find more tips for success for new court reporters.
Set goals today.
You can’t measure success unless you know the goals you’re trying to reach. Ask yourself what you want to get from your experience as a professional court reporter.
- What are your financial and non-financial goals? Include short-term goals like monthly bills or paying down debt as well as long-term goals for vacations, home buying, weddings, and retirement.
- How many hours a week or month do you want to work? Your time can vary over the course of months depending on the type of cases. Maybe after a lengthy case you want to take time off or maybe you want to take on another case. The choice is yours.
- Do you want to work in the business world in addition to or instead of the legal field? PR agencies, professional sports, and businesses are increasingly hiring reporter to transcribe live events including political and sporting, and webinars, seminars, and video.
Once you understand what you want, you begin to create the lifestyle you desire.
Not all clients are the same.
Whether you’re in the legal or business environment, your clients will vary by industry, temperament, and expectation. We recommend setting client expectations of work product and timelines before beginning the work. That way if they change a deadline, for example, you can refer to the scope of work for guidance. Otherwise you may end up working and paying expenses like additional copies or postage when you don’t have to be.
You will have clients who are more aggressive than others so learning to manage expectations will help manage those different personalities and help you on your path to success.
When you’re a new court reporter, it’s important to find a calendar app like Google calendar that can be accessed from anywhere. If a client calls to see if you’re available, you can see right away if you have time on the schedule. Not only that but you can block for family and friends.
We see great results from our reporters who utilize time blocking rather than time management.
That means they’re setting hours for specific tasks related to client work and their business. During those blocks, they focus solely on one client or task and avoid phone calls, emails, social media, household chores, and other distractions. Those who take this approach find they get more done in less time.
The key to success as a new court reporter is finding systems that work for you and help you meet the goals you’ve set for yourself whether that’s time blocking, setting goals, or working with clients.
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