A few years back I found myself being unappreciated and underpaid at my previous company and I thought to myself that there had to be a better way. I was young and like many foreigners here in Japan I envisioned owning a huge school with lots of students and becoming wealthy. While some people buy an already established school I didn’t, I built mine from the ground up. It was tough going at first, I made many mistakes. Overconfidence was definitely one of my downfalls. Still, I believed in what I was doing and I’m glad I stuck with it. My student body has grown slowly but steadily and yet somewhere along the way my goal changed.
Having lots of students would be great financially but at the same time it means I wouldn’t be able to do much else besides teach. Some people might be thinking – “ah, he’s getting burnt out” which is a common thing you hear here but that’s not case at all. In fact I love teaching even more now. I’ve met so many interesting people and learnt so many things from them. However I want to do more. At present I’m limited to teaching the people in my area and of course there’s only so much time in the day which is why I want to write books and teach seminars to name just a few. I realize that knowledge is power and so I want to share what I know with as many people as possible. If others can learn from my mistakes and successes then they’ll be in a better situation to help students which is my main goal. I have been teaching English for 17 years now and have taught in Japan for 10. I’ve been lucky enough to have taught privately, at a big company, at elementary schools, company classes as well as my own school. Each experience taught me a lesson (sometimes good, sometimes bad) and has allowed me to grow not only as a teacher but as a person and a businessman at the same time. Now I feel that sharing this knowledge with other teachers out there can only be a good thing. The more successful they become, the closer I am to accomplishing my goal of helping the Japanese public.
One day I still hope to own a big school but my path to get there has changed. English teaching isn’t some sort of secret society that hordes all their ideas but rather one that shares their knowledge with as many people as possible. The better we can teach in turn means we can get and keep more students, the more interest in the community for English and as a whole we create a better place for ourselves.
That’s the beauty of Smith’s. It allows us to reach our goals how we see fit.