Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

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Cool Boss
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Joined: 10/21/2009 - 10:23
Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

I know this has been commented on before, but a recent classified ad has really impressed me with its gall, so I figure it's time for a review. If you are offering *just* what you make hourly when trying to find a substitute, you are being cheap and a billion other adjectives that are far less gentle but mostly more suitable. And then there are cases--like this latest ad--where you're paying even less than what you make hourly, or at least that seems like the case when you are paying the same daily wage for vastly different daily working hours (You can find the ad yourself if this description seems convoluted). I don't have words in my vocabulary that cover how miserly you are. Now, again, why should you pay more than your base salary in the case that you need a sub?

1) When you are looking for a substitute, you are presumably asking someone to take a fireable/deportable risk-- working illegally outside of his/her own contract. Why should this person work for 10-15,000 won an hour?

2) You are making more than just your base salary. 99% of us are getting some sort of housing, an end-of-the-year bonus, and other such benefits. Again, if you're not cheap, you should consider this when suggesting compensation for a substitute.If the person's subbing for less than a month, it's still an honest gesture to throw in a little more based on this.

3) Just out of basic human kindness, you should offer a bit more than what your hagwon owner is going to shell out, because the reality is this person is doing you a huge favor. You are taking your little island vacation or heading home, and you can have the peace of mind that you're still going to have a job to come back to because your boss had a Western face to take your place for a couple of days/weeks. If a stranger helps you out, you should offer more than 10-15,000 won an hour, plain and simple.

Yet virtually everytime I see a substitute ad, that's what the hourly rate comes out to... maybe 20,000 won an hour at most, but that's a rarity. And these people who write these ads do their best to sell it as if they're giving you a deal. I really hope that these people have a hellish time finding teachers to cover for them; I don't like wishing ill on people, but I can't stomach it when foreigners treat each other disingenuously.

cfsmith
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Joined: 07/13/2011 - 01:03
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?
It seems fairly simple. Severance is a months salary. Divide that by 12 months. Your studio is probably running 300-500 a month. Divide that by 12 months. You probably work 6 classes a day, and let's say you make 2.2 a month. My math isn't great, but somewhere between 20-25 an hour should be the normal rate. If you're leaving for a week and hour offering less than 700k, and I have to be there during prep time, too, then you're math is worse than mine. And, believe me, mine is pretty bad.
tharp42
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Joined: 09/02/2009 - 13:21
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

Word.  You hit the proverbial nail on the frikkin' head there, sir.  I am astounded at the cheapness of some of the ESL crowd here.  One need look no further than the classified ads where I have seen teachers selling used slacks, broken irons, and extra chopsticks.

mattsid
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Joined: 09/15/2009 - 15:13
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

@Tharp. My favourite was 'Assorted coat hangers - 15,000 won OBO'

Angel
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Joined: 08/16/2009 - 11:51
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

Cheap is cheap: you can't polish a t--d.My personal favorite was used bathroom slippers!!

Paul Gaasenbeek
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Joined: 08/25/2009 - 15:04
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

Give crap away people. So cheap. The worst I saw was someone selling used kitchen hand towels for 500WON.

As for jobs, 9-6 for 100 a day. Who works for this? 12 an hour? It is 600 you never had! Please. Grow up!

You do not need to be rich to have class-no pun intended.

 

funkymusicwhiteboy
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Joined: 07/03/2011 - 23:28
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

Hello Cool Boss and fellow teachers here in Busan,

I'll be the first to admit that I wrote this ad for my friend who needs to go home that particular week in August.  We both just got here to Korea about 3 months ago so we didn't really know what to write OR what to offer as far as payment goes.

I suppose our perspective is uninformed rather than immature.

Thank you for giving your advice.  I didn't realize how hostile people can get about money.  We discussed increasing the payment to something more reasonable now that we have LEARNED through these rants that we need to grow up. I guess we are only teachers when we are being paid.

Ah money and egos. 

cfsmith
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Joined: 07/13/2011 - 01:03
Re: Can we stop being cheap when we look for substitutes?

Funkymusic,

If my post seemed hostile, my apologies. I probably jumped the bandwagon a bit. But, I did hope to bring some clarity to the issue at hand. That is, from the perspective that the F-2ers aren't getting any of the other benefits. I just wrote a post yesterday stating that I believe teachers should be paid for being good teachers, not for just being older and married to Korean women. I am not too old, but I am married to a Korean woman. I am also a certified teacher, and I taught in the States in between my stay(s) in Korea. So, my perspective is that teachers should want to teach and they should be paid accordingly. Of course, 10k-15k isn't going to cut it here or there... not because I'm greedy, but because I've got a mountain of bills. There's a bunch of the older chaps here that were making the 25k or 30k an hour a decade ago, and they seem to complain that the rates are constantly the same--sometimes worse. But, they know too that the hagwon business is just that... and there's not more to be had. Plus, they were a hotter commodity a decade ago, so that 30k (that should be 50k now) has planed. I guess others will argue this perspective. Oh, and I know... we all should be paid according to experience, education, etc... But, it just doesn't seem to work like that here. I mean, my wife has a decade of experience working in trade and customer service, but she's still barely making 2 mill a month. In the meantime, her boss will chat me up on facebook during work hours. And, he ain't making 2 mill a month. Thanks for the response. Cheers.