Gaba Corporation

  teaching-in-japan.gaba.co.jp
  teaching-in-japan.gaba.co.jp
Work in HR? Unlock Free Profile

Gaba Corporation Reviews

Updated August 26, 2014
Updated August 26, 2014
24 Reviews
3.3
24 Reviews
Rating Trends

Recommend to a friend
Approve of CEO
(no image)
CEO
0 Ratings

Employee Reviews

Sort: Popular Rating Date
  1.  

    Interview process

    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I worked at Gaba Corporation

    Pros

    Flexible Hours so that you can chose when to work.
    Reasonable Pay

    Cons

    Monotonus work. It gets boring

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Treat their employees with a little bit more respect.

  2.  

    Competitive but flexible and lucrative

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - English Instructor  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Current Employee - English Instructor in Tokyo (Japan)

    I have been working at Gaba Corporation as a contractor for more than 5 years

    Pros

    You can select your own schedule, though during certain hours it can be difficult to get a lot of lessons and therefore good income. However, if you can work evenings and weekends (say Tuesday to Saturday) you can build up a good client base and good income. There are also many ways to boost income through incentives if you are good. However, it can be competitive.

    Cons

    You have to compete with your fellow instructors to some extent which can lead to a slow start. If you can push through the first 6 months, it can turn into a very positive and lucrative experience.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Level the playing field between the most successful instructors and the up and comers. Due to the competitive nature of the job, some people find it difficult to increase their lesson rate and build a client base.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  3.  

    Autonomy, Mastery, and Purpose

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Certification Specialist
    Current Employee - Certification Specialist

    I have been working at Gaba Corporation full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Co-Workers: Work with people from all over the world and LEARN about their cultures and home countries.
    Work: The motto is "Helping people achieve their most audacious life goals" - if you recognize the fact that you can build up a client base and help those people with amazing life goals (travel, live abroad, new job, university research, etc.) through English education, you will love the job. Additionally you can LEARN from clients about Japan, their careers, interests, and so forth - great way to broaden your horizons.
    Schedule: Work as many or as few lessons as you'd like - depending on the contract type. The flexibility is amazing for those who want to travel and try their hand at other careers or freelance work. If you do it right, you can schedule a lot of time on the side.
    Pay: The pay isn't much at the start, but if you are dedicated, passionate, and open to additional responsibility you can make quite a bit.
    Advancement: As an Instructor you may max out your responsibilities - look to full-time opportunities.

    Cons

    Co-Workers: Egos - every job has them.
    Work: Some clients are more challenging than others - but who doesn't want a good challenge?
    Schedule: Not guaranteed to get clients coming to you - but if you want to be successful you've got to master what you do.
    Pay: Starting at 1,500yen per lesson. But that is more than minimum wage, and you get to live in Japan...

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Hold core principles higher than policy/process.
    Passionately communicate to applicants the people skills that are obtained in this line of work, and how those skills benefit them in future careers.
    Crowd source more effectively and efficiently ideas, tips, tools, techniques, and so forth that come from the over 1,000 contracted Instructors. Modern business is not about being top-down.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
  4. We want your feedback – Are these company reviews helpful to you?  Yes | No
  5.  

    Lots of opportunities--if you work hard and are willing to toe the company line

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Instructor Support Leader  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Current Employee - Instructor Support Leader in Tokyo (Japan)

    I have been working at Gaba Corporation full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    I started as an instructor and worked my way up to management. I was fortunate to have managers and coworkers who really cared about my development; I came in having a pretty tiny skill-set outside of teaching English, but in my time here I've learned a lot about sales, management, and even just how to function in an office environment. I keep my work and personal life pretty separate, but I've met some amazing people here--instructors, other managers, and also Japanese staff.

    Benefits are pretty standard--transportation costs, paid leave, and not too much overtime (for a Japanese company). My schedule is a lot less flexible than it was when I was an instructor, but I still have some input so I don't really feel constrained.

    The opportunities for promotion are there--up to a point.

    Cons

    The company goes through constant change. Usually I think it's a good thing, but one side effect is that the message can get diluted--people who have been around for a long time still try to hold on to the way things were years and years ago. That's true of instructors, managers, and Japanese staff alike. A lot of people who have been around for a long time hold negative views because they've had bad experiences in the past and they're skeptical of the efforts the company makes to ameliorate those issues.

    Work-life balance is generally pretty good, but it can get tricky because instructor management gets way more leeway than the Japanese staff and there can definitely be some resentment if you flaunt your privilege. Office politics plays a big role in the culture here.

    The opportunities for promotion are there, but they bottleneck sharply after a certain point. A lot of instructor support leaders quit because there's just nowhere for them to go.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    The biggest issue I see is that there's often a big dis-connect between senior management and the instructor base. It's our job to act as a go-between, but I don't feel that our input is taken as seriously as it sometimes needs to be.

    I also feel the Japanese staff need to be re-trained regarding how they view the instructors: they try to hold them to the same standards as full-time employees without any of the benefits, and it sometimes leads to a lot of resentment or misunderstanding.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  6. 2 people found this helpful  

    2 year instructor.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - Instructor  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Former Employee - Instructor in Tokyo (Japan)

    I worked at Gaba Corporation full-time for more than a year

    Pros

    Choose your own schedule.
    Minimal personal investment once you're over the initial hurdle of how to run a lesson.
    Interesting for 6 months or so.
    Most of the students are very friendly.
    Some lesson studios have a good environment, but others don't.
    You get to meet many people, some are very interesting.

    Cons

    If you rub the management the wrong way they can make your life hell, this includes the Japanese staff. You might not have any lessons.
    You choose your schedule a month in advance so you have no way of attending any thing that's scheduled less than a month beforehand
    No support from management apart from banal advice.
    Unpaid training that isn't really helpful as the training staff are far removed from lesson realities.
    Once it becomes a grind it's boring, especially as the students are also rather dry and homogenous
    Some times you get very difficult students.
    You could end up with no lessons, especially if you're not friendly or you have no special expertise, that's a tough situation if it's your only job in a foreign country.
    If you want to take advantage of the ability to close your lessons, the staff might pressure you to keep them open, often passive aggressively.
    Morale is pretty low amongst the Japanese staff as they aren't paid very much, and are very much sales driven due to their somewhat unrealistic targets.
    The common area is often messy and unhygienic.
    You might meet some very unpleasant people, and if you're a girl you might be sexually harassed. Indeed, English conversation schools are often compared to ersatz hostess bars
    If you're sick, then you will be guilt tripped into coming to work, depending on the management. You won't be paid, of course, and there's really no formal procedure for calling in sick so it's ill-advised, lest you risk a black mark against your name which would mean less lesson recommendations.
    the visa-sponsorship process, involving a 3 month review period, is overhyped. Anybody who gets booked for lessons will get the visa. You're also supposed to work at least 160 lessons to continue your visa, but that's disingenuous as it is simply during the review period this has any practical effect as, having attained a visa, you may go anywhere you want -- you don't have to stay with the company; whereas the company would rather have you believe that in order to maintain your visa you need to continue putting in the requisite 160 hours.
    Students will make passes at you -- be ready.
    In order to make money you will have to work weekends and evenings, and/or early mornings. Daytime lessons are rare, and often reserved for longterm instructors (3-4+ years)

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Stop guilt tripping people if you are, instructors are contractually allowed to close lessons at any time they want.

  7.  

    Flexible but not empathetic

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - English Instructor  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Former Employee - English Instructor in Tokyo (Japan)

    I worked at Gaba Corporation as a contractor for more than a year

    Pros

    Key thing here is that instructors that work there are not treated as "employees" which means you have full control of your schedule which allows for self study for course work and time off whenever.

    Cons

    Lower that market rate compensation, no employee benefits and strict "rating" system that reviews overall performance and extension of the contract.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Should give the perk to move to a full time instructor employee (NOT just ISL) for better retention of talent.

    Recommends
    Negative Outlook
  8. 1 person found this helpful  

    Good for part-timers, forget about a career here

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - One-to-one Instructor  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Former Employee - One-to-one Instructor in Tokyo (Japan)

    I worked at Gaba Corporation as a contractor for more than a year

    Pros

    Super flexible schedule good for students or people looking to work weekday evenings or weekends

    Cons

    Training is unpaid but mandatory. No real career advancement.. the recruiters say that you can eventually move up to management or head office, but this is a rarity! Even if you work full-time hours, no benefits, transportation allowance, nothing!

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Part-timers should receive part-time salaries and benefits. But full-time instructors deserve full-time salaries and benefits!

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
  9.  

    Good for a part time job

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Tokyo (Japan)

    I have been working at Gaba Corporation for less than a year

    Pros

    Very flexible timings. You can take time off when ever you want as much as you want, as long as you let them know in advance.
    Work environment is good and comfortable.

    Cons

    You don't work, you don't get paid, in other words no paid holidays.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Give more credit to the teachers you hire, maybe some little award for their performance, in order to boost their confidence.

    Recommends
  10. 2 people found this helpful  

    Fun way to earn a living temporarily

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Current Employee - English Instructor  in  Tokyo (Japan)
    Current Employee - English Instructor in Tokyo (Japan)

    I have been working at Gaba Corporation part-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    Flexible working hours
    Great opportunity to meet people and make friends

    Cons

    With a good manager at your school GABA is great to work for, but managers change often and time when they send in a total douchebag will come for sure. Lost many good instructors because of this.
    Sometimes it felt like freelance instructors are worthless (or easily replaceable) to the company.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Choose managers with more experience and pay more attention to people skills.
    During my time at GABA it felt like the loved managers were the most picked on. It destroys the mood for everyone, including students.

    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
  11. 1 person found this helpful  

    Meeting a lot of interesting people and helping them with their English.

    • Comp & Benefits
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Senior Management
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    Former Employee - English Instructor  in  Umeda, Osaka (Japan)
    Former Employee - English Instructor in Umeda, Osaka (Japan)

    I worked at Gaba Corporation full-time for more than 3 years

    Pros

    You can set your own schedule, and the pay is good. Management is pretty good at sticking up for you and there are plenty of chances for advancement.

    Cons

    If you set a schedule during the wrong times of day, you can be at work with no students, equaling no pay.

    Advice to ManagementAdvice

    Not much to say. In the Kansai Area, at leat, they run a tight and well-maintained ship.

    Recommends
    Positive Outlook

Worked for Gaba Corporation? Contribute to the Community!

Your response will be removed from the review – this cannot be undone.