Teaching at Berlitz

I’m going to be starting my Berlitz instructor training this week and I was wondering if anyone else has any experience teaching at a Berlitz branch here in Taiwan.

If the training goes well, I’ll be starting classes sometime next week (teaching either English or Spanish on a one-to-one basis) but I’m beginning to have second thoughts about the job.

First, I’ve noticed that the pay is considerably lower than that usually offered by other language schools (Berlitz offers NT$450 per unit of 45 mins). Maybe this is a compromise as I should feel honoured to be able to work for such a reputable company? :s

Second, I’m quite put out by what I was told after my first ‘live’ training session. I’m to do the e-training this week and then go to a review session at 10:30am on Sunday (nice). While I’m not that upset at sacrificing some extra sleep, I was a bit offended when told that I should try to look professional and business-like as there would be a student present in the centre on Sunday morning. Despite my efforts to look somewhat smart and alert first thing on a Monday morning, apparently I didn’t cut it and have to do better next time. :fume:

I might just be a little sensitive or something but I honestly feel that while some attempt should be made not to look scruffy, the most important thing should be your ability and enthusiasm to teach and NOT whether you have a business suit on or not. The suggestion that I was not up to scratch in that area has really dampened my enthusiasm and I’m half-tempted to take the training and then just say that teaching isn’t my thing…

I’d love to know if anyone else has had similar experiences.

Only experience I had was doing a teaching demo. They then offered me 500 NT/hour. Told them that was too low. They wouldn’t even offer me 550. Now they’re paying 450? I guess the 45-minute thing would disguise it, eh. :unamused: How many classes? It depends. Like, if you were teaching a couple of 45-minute classes in a row and then getting a break. It’s pretty hard to teach 4 hours straight with no break. I don’t know. Never done that.

Say you had three 45-minute classes in a row. That’s two hours and forty-five minutes. Then a 15-minute break and then three more classes. That’s four hours and 45 minutes (basically five hours). 6 classes gives you 2700 NT/day (13500 NT/wk). Still works out to a pretty low figure.

Guess it depends on how many hours you spend at the school.

How many hours a day? What’s the schedule. 450 for 45 minutes is 600/hr. Not bad, but, like I said, it depends. If you were sending 5.5 hours at the school everyday, and getting a total of a half-hour break, it might be worth it. 3000 NT/day is 15000/wk. Not bad. Then you could supplement your income somewhere else. Albeit illegally. Still though. If you made 10,000 wk doing kindergarten or got a 2 hr/day gig somewhere else, you’d be rolling dough.

I don’t know what to say about that Sunday thing. Sunday is kind of crazy.

Well, it seems I no longer have to worry about it all…

I got an e-mail this morning from them and diplomatically told me not to bother as there ‘wasn’t a strong fit between me and the corporate culture of Berlitz.’ :s

Thankfully I don’t have to write them a diplomatic ‘thanks but no thanks’ mail any more!

Just a shame they are more interested in people looking business-like than in enthusiasm for the job…

[quote=“lady_skywalker”]Well, it seems I no longer have to worry about it all…

I got an e-mail this morning from them and diplomatically told me not to bother as there ‘wasn’t a strong fit between me and the corporate culture of Berlitz.’ :s

Thankfully I don’t have to write them a diplomatic ‘thanks but no thanks’ mail any more!

Just a shame they are more interested in people looking business-like than in enthusiasm for the job…[/quote]

Well, consider this a blessing. Imagine how crazy you would be a few months down the line if you had started working for them.

Good luck getting a more normal job.

He, he, he. Too bad they weren’t dealing with me. Seriously, I did an interview with Berlitz years ago in another country and between the pops of her chewing gum and snide remarks about my experience the intervieweress told me to leave my phone number and if they had any suitable classes for me they would give me a call. Yeah, it was in Phoenix, AZ, and their ad stated steady work (I guess that meant the students wouldn’t be drunk) at the rate of $15.00 an hour.

Thank you very much Mr. Berlitz, but I have a plane to catch. And, I hope you’re not on it.

They are dildo heads.

They have ‘The Berlitz Method’ as well; stupid audio-lingual 60’s krap which just involves replaying tapes and drilling. You’d have died of boredom.

Yeah, the whole idea of teaching according to their set method did put me off a little as I would have liked opportunities to be able to come up with my own material once in a while.

Also, isn’t the ‘Berlitz Method’ basically a commercialised form of the ‘direct method’?

But never mind…I’ve read plenty of stories from former Berlitz instructors today and I’m glad things didn’t work out.

Their biggest problem is that a teacher can have classes at 8:00 in the morning, 2 in the afternoon and at 9:00 in the evening. It’s hard to make money and have a decent lifestyle. Somedays, due to this screwed up scheduling system, the teacher has a bad day (cannot do anything) and doesn’t make any money.

This scheduling also affects any privates that he/she may have. How can anyone have privates when their schedules change daily.

To make matters worse, the teachers at Berlitz don’t know what time their classes will be until about 9:30 at night. It’s so rediculous to think teachers should put up with such a screwed up system.

If the teacher thinks that is bad, then wait until the school only gives them 10 hours a week to work. This really depends on how well he/she kisses the secretary’s ass. The more they kiss; the more hours they get. So, the teacher is lucky if the secretary likes him/her.

cipos

I think it depends on where you’re located. The one I had a demo with back in 2003 seemed kind of stuck up. There was a block available though. Not sure on the details, but I think it could’ve been 4 hours/night. Or they wanted to try me out at first. I think they were willing to let me teach illegally. But the pay was ass. 500/hr. That’s just insulting. I had no other prospects for evening work except what already had part-time for two or three hours a week in the evening, but I still refused. Those demos are horseshit. More so horseshit when you’re experiene is horseshit.

1000 posts. Holly horseshit! (Is “horseshit/horse shit” one word or two?)

I inquired back in 2000 or 2001 and was totally turned off. Also, Berlitz as a global company has a strong reputation for not paying translators. Strange for such a strong brand, but maybe they can get away with it because of the brand’s strength.

Be honored they don’t want you. :smiley: