September 23, 2018, 04:19:31 AM


Author Topic: Anyone Successfully Argue For a Better Contract? How Did You Do It?  (Read 868 times)

Offline Tony Teacher

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I believe people should work for what they think they are worth, but has anyone successfully argued their case to their employer (Hagwon/School) and got things changed in the contract because they wanted you to work there? And how did it turn out? I'm just curious if anyone was able to do this and how they were able to accomplish this.
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Offline vietpham

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Public school.  I wouldn't say argue.  I would negotiate.  Do a little something extra for something back.  In my case we had an adjacent kindergarten that was part of our school.  I did a few lessons a week and in exchange they lowered my desk warming days as much as possible.  In the past I was given extra vacation days because I gave the vice principal liquor as a gift when I first came. 

This wasn't written in any contract but with the principals and head teacher seeing you put in extra effort, they're more likely to give you favourable treatment.  If they're not willing to work with you in any way, maybe it's best to creep in a few interviews during the renewal process.

Offline west coast tatterdemalion

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Well, of course, try to get the best deal for yourself. But know that they can easily replace you. There are a line of 22 year olds with mountains of student debt along with a dose of naivete just waiting to get on the next plane. Negotiate, but don't expect them to budge too much.
« Last Edit: May 19, 2016, 01:08:20 AM by west coast tatterdemalion »

Offline solveit

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Do you mean a first contract coming into a new job, or renewing a contract?

Online VanIslander

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I believe people should work for what they think they are worth,....
Then, for a wheelbarrow of diamonds every month, eh?  :laugh:

The fact is: Labour is a commodity and not about inherent worth. Go paint the next Mona Lisa is you want to consider yourself so unique and precious.

Otherwise, look at your needs and wants and balance YOUR opportunities and risks accordingly.

I successfully negotiated a four-day workweek at a 300,000 won raise (one less workday a week to boot!) because it was back in 2006 when ESL teacher wannabes flooded the public schools so the private academies/hagwons were chmping at the bit to get bodies to fill positions, and i had three-plus years of experience, a CELTA and a glowing reference at my disposal and I used them to rock negotiations!

Now a work for a tiny fraction more than a decade ago, though in my most preferred location, having worked here at this academy since 2009 and recently re-signed until 2017, loving my students and apartment and location, so money ain't the swaying factor.

Look yourself in the mirror, look at your options, look at what you are willing to walk away from, and negotiate accordingly. I'm certain that in the last half decade I could have gotten a few hundred thousand won more per month elsewhere in South Korea (and tons more in the Middle East), but I weighed all the pros and cons and made my decisions accordingly. Do so, and a "better" contract won't be the title of a thread you create.

Offline Whatgook

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Well, of course, try to get the best deal for yourself. But know that they can easily replace you. There are a line of 22 year olds with mountains of student debt along with a dose of naivete just waiting to get on the next plane. Negotiate, but don't expect them to budge too much.

There speaks a man whose never given his employers a reason to value him.

Yes Tony teacher, it is possible to negotiate better working conditions for yourself. My first year in Korea was at a small hagwon, with only two foreign teachers. When it came time to renew my contract, i knew they really wanted me to stay, as at small hagwons, if even a few kids leave because they don't like the new teacher, it can have serious ramifications for the schools finances. On top of that, you have to consider how expensive it is for hagwons to bring a new teacher over. Airfare, a new visa, recruiter fees, they all add up!

So, by taking other interviews, saying I was 'exploring my options', i made the school aware that i may not stay. Then, I said i wanted my 2.1 wage raised to 2.7. i got it. Why? I pointed out to them i knew how much it cost to replace me, knew how much they valued me, refused to budge, yet kept the negotiations civil and friendly.

Stick to your guns and know your worth, there's plenty of other jobs out there if you cant get what you want from your current employer.

Offline west coast tatterdemalion

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Well, of course, try to get the best deal for yourself. But know that they can easily replace you. There are a line of 22 year olds with mountains of student debt along with a dose of naivete just waiting to get on the next plane. Negotiate, but don't expect them to budge too much.

There speaks a man whose never given his employers a reason to value him.

Yes Tony teacher, it is possible to negotiate better working conditions for yourself. My first year in Korea was at a small hagwon, with only two foreign teachers. When it came time to renew my contract, i knew they really wanted me to stay, as at small hagwons, if even a few kids leave because they don't like the new teacher, it can have serious ramifications for the schools finances. On top of that, you have to consider how expensive it is for hagwons to bring a new teacher over. Airfare, a new visa, recruiter fees, they all add up!

So, by taking other interviews, saying I was 'exploring my options', i made the school aware that i may not stay. Then, I said i wanted my 2.1 wage raised to 2.7. i got it. Why? I pointed out to them i knew how much it cost to replace me, knew how much they valued me, refused to budge, yet kept the negotiations civil and friendly.

Stick to your guns and know your worth, there's plenty of other jobs out there if you cant get what you want from your current employer.


Ah yes, glad that you know my entire life history :rolleyes:. You know what they say about ASSumptions, don't you? I've left jobs because they haven't offered what I wanted. I've also negotiated for a higher wage and additional benefits. I was simply telling the OP that he is in an industry where he is easily disposable. I didn't tell him to just take any dog crap offer on the table..just to know that you aren't as valuable as you think. From 2.1 to 2.7?...your situation is unique. Most schools in Korea would never offer such an increase. Just being a realist here.