Entrepreneurship

Your Voice; Keeping it Healthy

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If you work as an Interpreter, Dispatcher or even in a call center, your job depends on your “voice”, and you are considered an occupational voice user.
Meaning, you are “The Voice” and that is your tool and the most valuable tool you have in order to convey and get your job done.
So, whether your an Interpreter, Conference Interpreter, Dispatcher, or work in a call center, or as a scheduler, your voice is your only link with the customer, correct?
So, it’s important that you take care of your voice and that you maintain a healthy voice in order to get the job done.

Because just as neat professional attire is essential for face-to-face interactions, having a clear voice is essential for your day-to-day business operations.
A hoarse voice from an Interpreter, or call center agent (CCA), dispatcher carries the same negative impression as a worn-out outfit and can detract from building credibility and or doing your job the right way, do you agree?

 

Little Story: A few years back I was doing a Conference appointment for the State, I actually had a team interpreter (who was sick) and was coughing up a storm.  Having a sick interpreter onsite who’s unable to do his/her job (use their voice to speak) not only did it affect the overall assignment, but it was a major distraction and also put on more stress on me, because I had to complete the job myself because my partner was sick with laryngitis.

 

So a healthy voice is crucial, but because you are constantly talking and using your voice to do your job and if you don’t take care of your voice, you are at risk for damaging your voice and developing hoarseness.

 

A 2002 study on voice problems among CCAs reported voice problems in 31 percent of CCAs, with several negative outcomes, including:

  • Increased sick days
  • Fewer calls per hour
  • More breaks away from the phone
  • Needing to repeat themselves
  • Needing to force the voice out

Overall, Interpreters, Dispatchers, CCAs with voice problems are bad not only for the CCAs, Interpreters, Dispatchers, Schedulers, and those who use their Voice to work but at the end of the day it’s bad for business.

I’ve learned from some Voice experts who now think that voice problem is a form of repetitive motion injury because the vocal cords are being injured by overuse, similar to the way data entry personnel may develop carpal tunnel syndrome.

Did you know that when we talk, the vocal cords vibrate about 200 times a second for women and about half that for men? That can add up to more than a million cycles of vibration during a workday at a call center causing vocal injury this is also true for singers, interpreters, dispatchers, call centers, etc.

 

As a professional conference interpreter who’s constantly working and who uses her voice to work, it is so important to take care of your voice!

True Story: About 4 years ago (I was a major workaholic) 🤔😊working all day, every day and would not take breaks in between and didn’t like working with other colleagues (I had bad experiences with other agency interpreters), so I was working for a whole straight month non-stop during the winter months and around November while working at a conference my Voice literally starting squeaking, I could NOT Speak, my voice started sounding horsy like, my chest started to hurt, my throat was just feeling horrible, I started to sweat, got dizzy and literally passed out! Apparently, I had walking pneumonia and laryngitis and was in the hospital! I failed to listen to my body, I was just so excited about the work, I love what I do and was just “Go-go-go” non-stop that my body finally gave out in the middle of an assignment!  This little scenario ended up costing me months being out of work until I was able to get my Voice back and recuperate from this horrible experience!

So yes, dear interpreters, dispatchers, CCAs, Schedulers and all of you who use your work to fulfill your responsibilities TAKE CARE OF YOUR “VOICE”!

Here are some recommendations and things that I do and have done so since this episode.

Posture

Taking frequent breaks and being able to move around is so important because it reduces the tension in your body and will prevent you from having other joint/muscle problems.

Breaks

Taking frequent breaks will give your voice muscle a rest, so try to rest your voice – meaning no talking, or drinking cold drinks.

Voice Pacing

Voice scientists advise those who use their Voice to work “to think of voice pacing on three levels:

  • Breaks within phone calls
  • Breaks between phone calls during the workday
  • Breaks between workdays”

Tips

Besides posture, breaks, and vocal pacing, you must also practice good voice hygiene. These tips have helped me keep the throat moist and free from irritation so that my vocal cords are less likely to be injured:

  • Drinking lots of (room temperature) water (or non-caffeinated liquid) during the day.
  • Keep water with you at all times.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol, which are drying to the throat.
  • Avoid excess coughing and throat clearing.
  • Don’t smoke! Smoking causes irritation and can lead to cancer and other health-related problems.
  • Don’t work if you have a hoarse voice due to a cold or upper respiratory infection.
  • Seek medical attention to manage any medical conditions that can cause throat irritation including acid reflux, postnasal drainage, allergies, asthma, and endocrine conditions, etc.
  • Avoid dry interior climates
  • Avoid high-risk areas they are known to cause damage to your voice.
  • Eat good and moist meals and avoid spicy foods, they cause acid reflux or GERD
  • Use a humidifier in your room or home, especially in dry climates.
  • Avoid mouthwash (it contains alcohol), if you need to gargle use lukewarm saltwater
  • Take vitamins or eat fruits and vegetables that are high in vitamins, A, E, and C
  • Drink lemon tea with honey (instead of  coffee)
  • I made my own paste that I add to my teas and helps with phlegm and it also has helped me from getting sick; it includes:
    • Ginger
    • Honey
    • Coconut oil
    • Pepper, etc…I will include the paste recipe in my next food meal article.

Get Help Early; Listen to Your Body

Seek medical attention early don’t wait until you have lost your voice to seek medical help.

Pay attention to the signs that your voice is getting tired such as– dry throat, raw or tired feeling in the throat, increased mucus in the throat, feeling like talking takes more effort, feeling throat strain — in addition to a raspy or hoarse voice.NIDCD-TakingCareOfYourVoice-Figure1

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Entrepreneurship

Biz Start Up Tips

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Get your Biz Start-Up Tips…

As the end of the year is coming I want to share a bit more about Who I Am, What I Do and What I Provide and to share My Love and Passion for both Interpreting and Entrepreneurship.

So let me ask you; do you have a Special Skill?

Do you have a Product or maybe a Service that you want to share with the world? or;

Maybe you are Bilingual and want to Start Your Own Business?

So, if you answered yes to all of the above, let me ask you one more question; How would you like to use those “special skills, products and/or services” to create additional income and start your own business?

So many of you who already know me know that I’ve been on both sides of the aisle.  I started off as a freelancer working with agencies (and still work) with a couple of agencies. After a few months working as a freelancer and seeing the do’s and don’ts and the “Good, Bad and Evil”, I decided I no longer wanted to continue to work as a Freelancer and working for “pennies on the dollar” and personally I didn’t like the process and demands of agencies especially since I was a “Freelancer / Independent Contractor” and NOT an Employee.  Therefore, I decided to venture off on my own.

So as an Entrepreneur and Former CEO who’s been on both sides of the aisles and someone who started and built her business on her own, here are a few tips to get you started, learn from the voice of experience, learn from someone who started and built her business from the “ground up”.

Yes! I started my Biz 18+ years ago helping businesses tap into the Hispanic Market. I helped businesses “Break the Language Barrier in Communication”.

I built my business from the ground up, yes literally from the ground up…I built a team of 10 staff employees and a cadre of over 2,500 freelance interpreters and offered services in over 150 languages around the world. I built my services around my clients’ needs; Interpreting, Translation, OPI, Transcriptions, and Coaching…I had contracts with the State, County, City, Federal, Hospitals, Insurance, Law Firms, Nonprofits and so many more…and I can help you too!

But, in order to make my business work and grow I had to make sure I was ONLY contracting and training the best of the best; therefore I was able to help and continue to help “Bilingual Individuals” and those with “Specials Skills, Products and Services” Start their Own Business and I can help you too!

So here is what you need to know if you decide you want to venture out on your own…You need the “Basics”

Resume

Business Plan

Strategic Plan

Training

Experience (gain experience as a volunteer)

Affiliations or Organizations

Terminology

Now, these are some basics to learn and know if you decide to start.  You can also join my list and get your Freebies and learn more about my Training and Coaching.

#BossUpandRise and become the #CEOHustler you always dreamed of!

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Entrepreneurship

Interpreting and Translation Tool

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Your business your world

Here is a Great Tool that I’ve been using to post jobs, manage online glossaries and network.  I’m sure that you will find this on-the-go tool very useful!

Although, I no longer operate as an agency from time-to-time I receive assignments in other languages for both Interpreting and Translation and therefore I use this tool to post those jobs and provide language professionals to accept or decline the jobs.

I also, use this tool to post my online glossaries. It’s just a great tool to have on hand and when you need it.

This tool is available for macOS AppStore and Windows Store

If you sign up and register today, you will also receive a FREE glossary slot… Make sure to sign up and start enjoying this tool.

Click Here and Sign Up Today!

***I only recommend tools, products, services that I have personally used and that have worked for me…Hope you will like it too!**

Interpreter Training

Start Your Interpreting Career: Inside Secrets from Freelancer to CEO

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Let's get this Hustlin started

By Faviola Valencia, the CEO Hustler

Are you bilingual and want to start a career as a professional interpreter?

Want to learn the ins/outs of this billion dollar industry?

Do you want to learn what it takes to start your career?

Do you want to start your own business?

So, are you ready to start your career and take it to the next level?

“Speaking a Second Language DOES NOT make you an Interpreter, any more than having ten fingers makes you a pianist

Want to Learn what you need and what it takes to Start a Career as a Professional Interpreter?

 

Are you bilingual and love helping others and love to travel?  Then this might be the career for you!

 

Watch this FREE training and find out if this is the right training for you and if I’m the right Coach and Trainer for you…

 

This video will answer your questions…i.e, if this training is for you, if you have what it takes to start your Interpreting journey!

 

Send your questions directly to faviolatheinterpreter@gmail.com 

Watch & Learn if this is the right career for you, Get Trained!

Watch it for free . No registration needed. 

If you or anyone you know is interested in starting a career as an interpreter, or if your an interpreter who is “stuck” and doesn’t know how to increase their business, then contact me and start your Career today!

 

Don’t wait, start making what you WORTH!

 

Join today and SAVE TODAY!

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Interpreting and Translation

Are you a “Good Interpreter”

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Pico Conference
Simultaneous Interpreter

After 18 years working as a professional interpreter, many people always ask “Do you consider yourself a Good Interpreter?”… My answer will always be the same – I consider myself a good interpreter because;

  1. I take pride in my work.
  2. I love what I do.
  3. I love to research and learn more about the industry, terminology in order to do my job the best that I can.

So, yes I consider myself a “Good Interpreter”

Now, I know what you are thinking “Man, this woman is full of herself, she’s kinda conceded”, hahaha but its OK., that just means I’m confident of myself and I know what I can and can’t do!

Now, don’t get me wrong there’s more to this…So, for starters, the interpreter must – as our colleague would also state

( https://rpstranslations.wordpress.com/2018/04/16/what-makes-a-good-interpreter/ )

  • Be able to communicate from one language into the target language.  But don’t forget, the ultimate and “main goal is to make sure that everything interpreted was conveyed in such a manner that the person receiving the information, is able to understand the language of the speaker” The Professional Interpreter– “We are the VOICE”.  So, it is VERY IMPORTANT that the interpreter understands both the source and target language.  A good interpreter must be able to understand, synthesize, and have command of grammar, culture, and vocabulary” The Professional Interpreter
  • Be able to interpret everything “word for word”, but more importantly that everyone is able to understand him/her.  “Heavy breathing, coughing, slurping, rushing through the speech, and chasing speakers too close to what they just said makes you not only look bad” The Professional Interpreter, but even worse sound bad, so even when you are a good interpreter, you need to make sure you keep the pace and make your speakers aware that they must keep a pace (in order for you to be able to interpret everything). “Good voice, décalage, volume, rhythm, pace, voice modulation, clarity, enunciation, are a very important part of a rendition.” The Professional Interpreter
  • Finally, I strongly believe that a good interpreter who gets along with others is more desirable than a great interpreter who creates conflict everywhere.

To me a “rock star interpreter”, is one who understands a “concepts, digests it, and is able to convey it to the client in a pleasant clear voice, so it can be understood by the foreign language speaker; and does it all while being professional, good colleague, and decent human.” The Professional Interpreter

So, what are your thoughts of a “Good Rock Star Interpreter”… Thanks to “The Professional Interpreter for sharing some wise words… Don’t forget to follow him at RPSTRANSLATIONS “The Professional Interpreter”

Are you Bilingual and are looking to Start a Career as a Professional Interpreter, or maybe looking to Start Your Own Language Agency?  Learn More

 

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Entrepreneurship

Start Your Interpreting Business in One Day

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Faviola the CEO Hustler
the ceo hustler helping you boss up and rise

By Faviola Valencia, the CEO Hustler

Are you Bilingual?

Want to be Your Own Boss?

Want to Start Your Own Business?

Do you Like Working and Helping Others?

Like Traveling?

If you answered YES, then this might be the Career for YOU!

“It takes more than JUST BEING BILINGUAL to become a Professional Interpreter… it takes; professional skills, training and much more!…”

But DON’T WORRY! 

 

I have everything you need to get you started on your Career!  I’ve been in this industry for over 19+ years. 

 

I started as a “Freelance Interpreter” in 2000 and within just a few months, I started my own Interpreting agency. 

While running my agency I was also Training New “Potential” Interpreters and teaching the Does and Don’ts of this wonderful Industry.

Get Your FREE step-by-step guide and get your career started today!

Download it for free . make sure to watch the Free Training Video below…

Now things to remember and to take into consideration and these “inside secrets” no one tells you or is willing to talk about!

In business and in life you will ALWAYS have ups/downs and being prepared is so important!

Little History:

We all start excited and feel complete and “stoked” when business is growing and running smoothly and cash is rollin in and business is just BOOMING, right?!

How about when S***hits the fan?!

Yeaup, that was me…Business was good, Life was good and things didn’t seem BAD, but then…

  1. I suffered an auto accident (was out for almost one year…
  2. Economy was about to crash (but I didn’t see it coming) bu
  3. Then I got pregnant (had a bad pregnancy & almost lost my Baby Girl)
  4. Son suffered a femur fracture (son in a body cast), just when I thought things couldn’t get worse…well they did!
  5. My father was diagnosed with Brain Cancer (Stage 4 Glioblastoma & after just a few months passed away).
  6. I was being “sued, accused of “crappy, s****” business practices (but I was victorious and was able to prove my innocence)…

But in the eyes of my “loyal interpreters, subcontractors” I was just a horrible business owner who was taking advantage of them, who “cheated them, but “unbeknown to them I was going through horrible business and life experiences (I don’t wish upon anyone) and was also a victim of “bad business, business shutdowns, the economy crashing & life/death situations”, but as the CEO it was my fault & I am responsible for everything even the horrible ups/downs & life struggles and challenges.

So after my father passed away I decided to close my business and go back to Freelancing, as well as continuing to  Train New Potential Interpreters  to help them prepare and avoid these same challenges and problems.

Fast forward… Let me tell you I enjoy being a Freelancer and Entrepreneur more than running an Agency and CEO :)…

 

Many ask Why…

 

Well as you can see based on my “Little History” that is why, but also I don’t have to deal with bureaucracy and headaches that come along with running a large business 🙂

 

Now don’t get me wrong running an Agency is a very lucrative business and industry to be in, but YOU MUST BE PREPARED to work around the clock to make your business work.

 

Versus a Freelancer / Entrepreneur you get to work when you want, earn as much as you want and have the freedom that you want – sounds great, right?

 

Here I am “still standing, with my head up high” and with God’s blessings…

  1. My father passes away, but he’s in a better place
  2. My daughter is alive and healthy (dealing with kidney issues, but never the less alive)
  3. I survived the “Economy Crash”
  4. My son recovered and is living his dream of being a Chef

 

So here I am still enjoying this wonderful industry providing services to various companies across the globe, but more importantly, I get to Train and work with New Potential Interpreters all while doing what I love!

On another note, you will see online that there are various Training programs focusing on Medical, Legal and Conference Interpretation / Certification; however, if you don’t have the Basic Skills and understanding as to how this industry works, or how to run your own freelance/entrepreneur business then let me tell you, you are ONLY setting yourself for failure! Join my Introduction to Interpreting Training

 

Why, well as you may be aware there are hundreds, if not thousands of young college students who go to college for years and years and after graduating they find themselves unable to obtain a job in their industry. 

 

Why? Well, because during their years in College they never got into internships, nor did they work in a similar industry to mirror their college career goal, therefore making them Non-Competitive!

 

Trust me when I say: Becoming a Certified Medical, Legal Interpreter is GREAT!

 

BUT…

 

If you don’t have the skills, qualifications, or understanding of this industry, YOU, MY FRIEND WILL NOT GET FAR!

 

Although I am NOT CERTIFIED, I do have OVER 18+ years of professional experience, as well as the skills, the qualifications to work in any industry I choose…

 

TRUST ME, my clients will pay my fees and will prefer to hire me vs a Certified Interpreter, why? Well, because of my skills, qualifications, and experience!

 

Note: I finally have the time and I’m currently working on my Certification – because it is a VALUABLE ASSET to have!

Learn More

 

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