This is one stay-at-home mom’s incredible story of self-discovery and transformation both personally and financially.
Katie Chase is a stay-at-home mom of two young children ages three and six. One of her children has special needs. Her husband earns about $40,000 per year working in logistics for Intel, and the four of them currently live in a 1,000-square-foot apartment in Beaverton, Oregon. They’re looking to buy their first home together.
I had a conversation with Katie in February this year, about six months after she’d graduated from Transcript Proofreading: Theory and Practice™. It’s taken me forever to put it up on the blog, mostly because things kept changing so rapidly for both of us as soon as we finished talking. To say our conversation was life-changing would be putting it lightly!
A little peek into what it was like to be Katie back in the summer of 2015: “[My husband] works 12-hour days, sometimes 18-hour days, for four days straight, so I’m here alone with the kids,” Katie says. “So it was getting lonely, and I wanted to have something to do myself. I need something to do where I feel like I’m gaining a skill that, in the future, if something happened and my husband were to lose his job, that I could support our family,” she added.
My Most Skeptical Student Ever
Funny enough, Katie was probably my most skeptical student ever in the 7-day intro course.
But her skepticism turned to excitement when she realized I (Caitlin) was a real person who was actually answering her emails. During our chat, Katie said, “That was a big deal for me because you try all these different things and you get these automated responses like, ‘Oh, good job. Way to go. Keep going.’ Or, ‘Hey, I want to sell you something else now.’ And it wasn’t like that. I didn’t feel like it was a money grab at all.”
So Katie was ready to make a move and talked it out with her husband, Donnie. She asked him to invest in her becoming more for their family. He was on board, saying, “I want you to do this. I want you to be able to do it.” What a guy!
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Katie: “It was NOT a Light-Bulb Moment”
Surprisingly, deciding to make the leap into proofreading wasn’t a smack-you-in-the-face moment for Katie. “It wasn’t a light-bulb moment. It was like, you know what? I’m never gonna know unless I go through the door. It may not be for everyone, but for me it’s been incredibly fulfilling to meet so many people and work with so many talented professionals, and I love it,” she said in our interview.
From $0 to $2,000+ per Month — within 6 Months!
Katie graduated from PA in August 2015. She later added on legal transcription.
She went from earning $0 per month to more than $2,000 each month working part-time as a proofreader and transcriptionist. “I think that PA delivered exponentially,” Katie said. “Now I can save and really contribute to my family financially and to myself personally in my sense of accomplishment, and that, I think, is worth the tuition of both courses ten times over. You can’t really put a price on that, especially as a mom,” she added.
Other highlights of our conversation included:
- how Katie felt skeptical even as she began the course, and how that changed as she progressed through
- the fear many students experience before learning something new
- regaining confidence after you realize you don’t know it all
- how practice and training makes impressing that first client much less risky and stressful
- how taking shortcuts can ruin your reputation almost instantly
- why the market for highly skilled proofreaders will never be flooded
- how Katie took her marketing knowledge learned in Module 8 and built a “side-hustle empire”
Watch Our 41-Minute Conversation on Video
Unscripted and unrehearsed; raw and real. Two women talking about doing real work to make real money working at home.
Enjoy 🙂 (Post continues below video.)
Here’s a PDF of the transcript of our conversation (29 pages). Download and read along if you’d like, or just watch/listen to the video.
Full disclosure: I did not pay Katie to talk to me, but I did pay her to transcribe our conversation. I wanted to do three things: 1) see that Katie has, in fact, learned to transcribe properly, 2) provide an alternate way to enjoy this interview, and 3) I wanted to show proof to blog readers that even small-scale bloggers like me are willing to hire and pay transcriptionists.
Note: I mentioned “current” pricing in the video. Since the time of recording, course tuition has increased by $100.
Related reading: 4 Reasons I Use General Transcriptionists (and Why I’m Not Alone).
Links Mentioned in the Conversation:
Transcribe Anywhere’s Legal Transcription: Theory and Practice™ (link leads to free mini course)
Wall of Fame (see what Katie’s clients have said about her work)
Katie’s Unexpected Transition AWAY from Proofreading
Soon after the interview, Katie’s life changed again!
When we filmed this video back in February 2016, Katie (and I) thought she’d arrived at what she was meant to do. She was talented at proofreading and transcription and loved what she was doing.
Right after we filmed our conversation, Katie and I chatted on for a bit, and I mentioned super casually I had been looking for an assistant and how hard it was to find someone. I didn’t think anything of it because we’d just talked for 40 minutes about how much she loved her work as a proofreader and legal transcriptionist.
But I got an email from Katie later that day asking what exactly I was looking for in terms of help. I told her I was looking for someone to help me do more in my business by taking over the more time-consuming tasks with the blog — creating newsletters, blog posts, social media, etc. I wanted to be able to focus on the things only I could do.
In replying to her email, I suddenly realized Katie would be the perfect fit to work with me. She’s dedicated, friendly, motivated, and an astonishingly quick learner. So I asked her if she’d be up for it, and she was! (Even though she had already expressed her interest, I was nervous she’d tell me no — I liked her a lot and was very excited!)
I told her I’d need her for 5-10 hours per week… but as we got started and I realized how good Katie was at being my assistant, I gave her more and more responsibility. She grew right into her role of office manager and executive assistant. It was a perfect fit!
She’s since helped me hire on several other team members. Proofread Anywhere is growing its reach and helping more and more people find their fit in the work-at-home world (even people who aren’t a good fit for proofreading).
How to Contact Katie
You can contact Katie through her email at [email protected]
Katie also started her own blog about her journey in motherhood and transitioning into the work-at-home mom role. If you’re a mom looking to make a similar transition into working at home, then her blog will help you do that!
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