Dan Ranks: A Comparison of Ideologies

andyjeffries

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As it should be. Different people learn best in different ways. Different people teach best in different ways. Trying to dictate the HOW strikes me as more than a bit unreasonable.
Also a fair point, but I'd certainly agree with giving masters the tools to choose from. So education on differing instructional methods, when they work best, for what type/age/stage student, etc, would be useful I'm sure.
 

dvcochran

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Also a fair point, but I'd certainly agree with giving masters the tools to choose from. So education on differing instructional methods, when they work best, for what type/age/stage student, etc, would be useful I'm sure.
I will just say if a school owner cannot figure out that stuff they do not need to be a school owner. That is a completely different dynamic from being an instructor but I am not certain you see this.
FWIW, many times I have encouraged people on this forum to take a business class or two if they are struggling with the operational stuff. If they have a mentor (close instructor or GM) all the better.
I do not expect to learn the type of stuff mentioned from a MA's seminar instructor. That would just be filler to me. I never remember anything like that in my KKW Master Class.
 

andyjeffries

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I will just say if a school owner cannot figure out that stuff they do not need to be a school owner. That is a completely different dynamic from being an instructor but I am not certain you see this.
As you put it "Respectfully, your opinion is narrow" . You come from a place where full time dojangs are the normal situation and it's hard for you to put your head in the mindset of someone who doesn't EVER want to do that. And it seems from your writing that you feel they should never head a dojang if they don't.

I earn very well from my day job and I love it; Taekwondo is my hobby and my passion. Pre-covid (in the UK we're only really just opening back up) I had 90-100 students, and we'd train 2-3 times per week (two evening and one Saturday morning).

I teach Taekwondo for the love of it, not for money. I don't ever want to earn money from Taekwondo. Our students pay fees, and they go to the hall hire, equipment purchase (such as mats), instructor education, etc. But myself and my master assistants don't take a penny from it.

Personally I feel that if you're doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where you have to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or your morals. Do you test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Do you accept more students than you realistically can teach in a class because you need their fees. That sort of thing.

Now I don't look down on those people and say "they shouldn't be a dojang owner, because Taekwondo is not about money, it's purer than that", horses for courses. I just don't ever want to be in that position, but I'm maybe a bit crazy about it. For example, I judged at our national poomsae championship in the UK, and the organisers didn't know what to do when they tried to give me the daily stipend and I told them I didn't want it, and to give it to some national squad member or student that could do with it.

So I feel that not everyone is a full-time instructor, but hopefully all instructors want to upskill and I don't think "figuring it out" is always the way to go. For example, I don't want to experiment with ADHD or autistic students in the hope I figure it out, I want to talk to experts and take advice so I can best help them. And because this isn't a full time thing for me, attending LOTS of training events on different things could be cost or time prohibitive, so getting a little bit of everything on a single course is great.

FWIW, many times I have encouraged people on this forum to take a business class or two if they are struggling with the operational stuff. If they have a mentor (close instructor or GM) all the better.

Absolutely, if someone's running a business and needs help, then take a business class. I'm already a businessman outside of Taekwondo, so that isn't a problem for me

I do not expect to learn the type of stuff mentioned from a MA's seminar instructor. That would just be filler to me. I never remember anything like that in my KKW Master Class.

Again though, everyone's needs are different. For you business stuff or how to build a syllabus or how to teach in different styles may be filler, but to me basic techniques and Korean terminology would be filler because I'm really confident on both things (having done the master course twice, the examiner course once and being an intermediate/advanced Korean speaker.

However, I understand that it wasn't always the case for me, it certainly won't be the case for everyone on these courses, so I appreciate that it's on the course for everyone to learn. And hey, if I pick up some little nugget/tip in that lesson too, that's great - I'm all for learning.
 

dvcochran

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As you put it "Respectfully, your opinion is narrow" . You come from a place where full time dojangs are the normal situation and it's hard for you to put your head in the mindset of someone who doesn't EVER want to do that. And it seems from your writing that you feel they should never head a dojang if they don't.

I earn very well from my day job and I love it; Taekwondo is my hobby and my passion. Pre-covid (in the UK we're only really just opening back up) I had 90-100 students, and we'd train 2-3 times per week (two evening and one Saturday morning).

I teach Taekwondo for the love of it, not for money. I don't ever want to earn money from Taekwondo. Our students pay fees, and they go to the hall hire, equipment purchase (such as mats), instructor education, etc. But myself and my master assistants don't take a penny from it.

Personally I feel that if you're doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where you have to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or your morals. Do you test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Do you accept more students than you realistically can teach in a class because you need their fees. That sort of thing.

Now I don't look down on those people and say "they shouldn't be a dojang owner, because Taekwondo is not about money, it's purer than that", horses for courses. I just don't ever want to be in that position, but I'm maybe a bit crazy about it. For example, I judged at our national poomsae championship in the UK, and the organisers didn't know what to do when they tried to give me the daily stipend and I told them I didn't want it, and to give it to some national squad member or student that could do with it.

So I feel that not everyone is a full-time instructor, but hopefully all instructors want to upskill and I don't think "figuring it out" is always the way to go. For example, I don't want to experiment with ADHD or autistic students in the hope I figure it out, I want to talk to experts and take advice so I can best help them. And because this isn't a full time thing for me, attending LOTS of training events on different things could be cost or time prohibitive, so getting a little bit of everything on a single course is great.



Absolutely, if someone's running a business and needs help, then take a business class. I'm already a businessman outside of Taekwondo, so that isn't a problem for me



Again though, everyone's needs are different. For you business stuff or how to build a syllabus or how to teach in different styles may be filler, but to me basic techniques and Korean terminology would be filler because I'm really confident on both things (having done the master course twice, the examiner course once and being an intermediate/advanced Korean speaker.

However, I understand that it wasn't always the case for me, it certainly won't be the case for everyone on these courses, so I appreciate that it's on the course for everyone to learn. And hey, if I pick up some little nugget/tip in that lesson too, that's great - I'm all for learning.
Read my profile; you will see you are again speaking from a position of ignorance. Having a 'day' job for me is SO much of an understatement that gave me a good chuckle. How many people do you employ and are responsible for?

It took me several years to establish my buildings ownership and to be able and (always) willing to ride out some of the financial hard times each school has seen over the years. That was always My choice and My hard work that allowed it. I have never compromised the level of teaching and offerings for 'the money'. Fortunately, our schools, and instructors, and especially our GM make this very easy.
You are painting commercial schools with a vain and narrow minded brush it seems like. I will be the first to say to each their own but I ask that you do the same without predisposed notions of sacrificing quality because a person it teaching/training in a commercial building. Just total BS. Where were you when you took your all mighty KKW courses?
Having 90 students that 'do not pay' with no reliable place to workout is questionable at best. If I understand what you have written you use this money for your own benefit, to take the KKW courses and to acquire Your gear. Talk about narrow perspective. More like self ingratiating.

I have no problem with you if you want to be purely WT/KKW or otherwise. But to promote it as the only TKD 'way' and to encourage people to shut down active Kwan's is going WAY too far. Pure KKW propaganda.
Which is really a head scratcher when you yourself are a member of a Kwan. Quite confusing.
What are your plans for shutting down your Kwan?
 

andyjeffries

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Read my profile; you will see you are again speaking from a position of ignorance. Having a 'day' job for me is SO much of an understatement that gave me a good chuckle. How many people do you employ and are responsible for?
You replied to the whole post, I'm not clear on what you are referring to?

At my dojang/club (bear in mind we aren't full time) I have 4x master rank students that teach and 2x 2nd/3rd dans that assist. But they aren't employed in a traditional sense.

Or are you asking about my day job?

It took me several years to establish my buildings ownership and to be able and (always) willing to ride out some of the financial hard times each school has seen over the years. That was always My choice and My hard work that allowed it. I have never compromised the level of teaching and offerings for 'the money'. Fortunately, our schools, and instructors, and especially our GM make this very easy.

That's good. I'm not saying everyone is corrupt, just that it's a risk and I'm glad I don't have to ever risk it.

You are painting commercial schools with a vain and narrow minded brush it seems like.

I'm not saying all do, just that the chance is much higher if you don't take the purist view of "not for profit".

I will be the first to say to each their own but I ask that you do the same without predisposed notions of sacrificing quality because a person it teaching/training in a commercial building. Just total BS. Where were you when you took your all mighty KKW courses?

Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but this seems to have turned from a friendly discussion to a debate and now seems to be becoming very heated?

What are you asking when you say "where were you"? Do you mean on the course? At Kukkiwon... Do you mean where in the world did I come from to get there? I'm not clear on what you want to know.

Having 90 students that 'do not pay' with no reliable place to workout is questionable at best. If I understand what you have written you use this money for your own benefit, to take the KKW courses and to acquire Your gear. Talk about narrow perspective. More like self ingratiating.

Woah! You made a jump there...

"Having 90 students that 'do not pay'" <<< As above, they pay training fees - the instructors (including myself) just don't receive any wages or regular expenses from it.

"no reliable place to workout" <<< We've been at the same venue for about a decade. We have a great relationship with the school and they move things around for us to allow for extra sessions/seminars as we require. I don't know what your definition of "reliable" is here, but it's been solid for ~10 years...

"you use this money for your own benefit" <<< Errr, not really. More for the benefit the club, and I'm certainly not special in the usage of money compared to the other masters and instructors. There's no opportunity that I use that the other masters and assistant instructors can't also use. We've also subsidised drinks at our adult Christmas party most years since I took over the club, and thrown free/subsidised parties for the children.

"to take the KKW courses" <<< We have used the money for the KKW course, sure. The first time I took it, I personally paid for everything (even though the club could afford it). The second time I took it, the club paid for flights for four of us masters (the ones that wanted to go), we personally paid the course fee and all living expenses. We have also hosted guest instructors at the club, we've had an ex-National team member come and deliver a series of seminars for the club coaches, so we could develop our sparring practices and syllabuses. We've had other National team members, National team coaches and International masters come to teach seminars at our club - all either free for our entire student base or dramatically subsidised by the club.

"acquire Your gear" <<< All my own personal equipment is paid for by me, from my own pocket. Equipment for the students use is bought by the club. This includes enough mats to cover the entire floor, paddles, power shields, first aid equipment (including a freezer for ice packs), electronic protectors, etc.

I don't get how you consider that "self ingratiating"?

I have no problem with you if you want to be purely WT/KKW or otherwise. But to promote it as the only TKD 'way' and to encourage people to shut down active Kwan's is going WAY too far. Pure KKW propaganda.

Again, I don't know where we've lost track here. I don't want to shut down the Kwans at all. I am an active member of my Kwan, an official representative in the UK (although I have recommended people globally for Kwan rank and membership).

I also don't want say Kukkiwon Taekwondo is the only "way", I'm perfectly fine with ITF Taekwon-do, John Smith Taekwondo, ATA, Some X Kwan (i.e. not claiming to be doing official X Kwan, but some offshoot/local/national version of it), etc.

My point about the Kwans is that the Kwans are still active (thankfully) but lots of people use that as a label to explain why they don't do things Kukkiwon standard, maybe using outdated standards or forms, when their Kwan HQ in Korea (mostly in Korea) DOES follow Kukkiwon standards.

Which is really a head scratcher when you yourself are a member of a Kwan. Quite confusing.
What are your plans for shutting down your Kwan?

As above, hopefully I've clarified your confusion. I have no wish or desire to shut down any Kwan, just for people to stop saying they're "X Kwan" as if that explains why they don't follow Kukkiwon standards when the President of X Kwan follows Kukkiwon standards (where X is unspecific, as this is a general point and applies to most Kwans).
 

dvcochran

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You replied to the whole post, I'm not clear on what you are referring to?

At my dojang/club (bear in mind we aren't full time) I have 4x master rank students that teach and 2x 2nd/3rd dans that assist. But they aren't employed in a traditional sense.

Or are you asking about my day job?



That's good. I'm not saying everyone is corrupt, just that it's a risk and I'm glad I don't have to ever risk it.



I'm not saying all do, just that the chance is much higher if you don't take the purist view of "not for profit".



Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but this seems to have turned from a friendly discussion to a debate and now seems to be becoming very heated?

What are you asking when you say "where were you"? Do you mean on the course? At Kukkiwon... Do you mean where in the world did I come from to get there? I'm not clear on what you want to know.



Woah! You made a jump there...

"Having 90 students that 'do not pay'" <<< As above, they pay training fees - the instructors (including myself) just don't receive any wages or regular expenses from it.

"no reliable place to workout" <<< We've been at the same venue for about a decade. We have a great relationship with the school and they move things around for us to allow for extra sessions/seminars as we require. I don't know what your definition of "reliable" is here, but it's been solid for ~10 years...

"you use this money for your own benefit" <<< Errr, not really. More for the benefit the club, and I'm certainly not special in the usage of money compared to the other masters and instructors. There's no opportunity that I use that the other masters and assistant instructors can't also use. We've also subsidised drinks at our adult Christmas party most years since I took over the club, and thrown free/subsidised parties for the children.

"to take the KKW courses" <<< We have used the money for the KKW course, sure. The first time I took it, I personally paid for everything (even though the club could afford it). The second time I took it, the club paid for flights for four of us masters (the ones that wanted to go), we personally paid the course fee and all living expenses. We have also hosted guest instructors at the club, we've had an ex-National team member come and deliver a series of seminars for the club coaches, so we could develop our sparring practices and syllabuses. We've had other National team members, National team coaches and International masters come to teach seminars at our club - all either free for our entire student base or dramatically subsidised by the club.

"acquire Your gear" <<< All my own personal equipment is paid for by me, from my own pocket. Equipment for the students use is bought by the club. This includes enough mats to cover the entire floor, paddles, power shields, first aid equipment (including a freezer for ice packs), electronic protectors, etc.

I don't get how you consider that "self ingratiating"?



Again, I don't know where we've lost track here. I don't want to shut down the Kwans at all. I am an active member of my Kwan, an official representative in the UK (although I have recommended people globally for Kwan rank and membership).

I also don't want say Kukkiwon Taekwondo is the only "way", I'm perfectly fine with ITF Taekwon-do, John Smith Taekwondo, ATA, Some X Kwan (i.e. not claiming to be doing official X Kwan, but some offshoot/local/national version of it), etc.

My point about the Kwans is that the Kwans are still active (thankfully) but lots of people use that as a label to explain why they don't do things Kukkiwon standard, maybe using outdated standards or forms, when their Kwan HQ in Korea (mostly in Korea) DOES follow Kukkiwon standards.



As above, hopefully I've clarified your confusion. I have no wish or desire to shut down any Kwan, just for people to stop saying they're "X Kwan" as if that explains why they don't follow Kukkiwon standards when the President of X Kwan follows Kukkiwon standards (where X is unspecific, as this is a general point and applies to most Kwans).
I responded to Your post so the comments had to come from you.

As far as where were you I meant where were you during your KKW courses? Inside, outside? In a physical location I assume. I assume the latter.

Multiple people have read your posts to say you advocate shutting down or at least not promoting the active Kwans. I suggest you choose your wording more carefully as this was offensive.
If your club is paying the fees for you and your BBs to fly to/from wherever and take classes and such you are being paid. How you are wording it is just semantics and frankly smells a bit shady. What do you do with your overages?

I work with many stateside Dojangs as the presenter (back some time now) and promoting seminars and programs lead by the highest ranking GMs and national and Olympic level competitors from north/middle/south America, many of whom I am still friends with. We do not flaunt that. We just do it.

I purchased the first strip building where my first Dojang began and still is when I was a 1st Dan in 1986. The second building about 5 year later.

You said you had a day job in your previous post. I merely pointed you to my profile so you can see that I have as well, and then some. Between my wife and I we own five businesses.
To infer that somehow waters down our TKD is what I was calling BS on. That is quite offensive to me.

I have no qualms with you and yes, this is purely a conversation, but dont think myself and others here will not get defensive about some of the things you have said in this thread.

Having students pay but not paying instructors is simply wrong. As I said before having classes, seminars, and gear paid for by the club is to some degree equal to payment, however I am not in a position to do the math to know if that is equitable in your situation.

Being passionate about your MA is great; I wish everyone was. But you basically bashed all other TKD styles/systems that are not KKW. That is not cool and patently wrong in so many ways that clearly you are not even aware of. Most of us do not have nor do we want that luxury. Clearly an ignorance is bliss situation for you.
I wish you the best.
 
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MadMartigan

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If your club is paying the fees for you and your BBs to fly to/from wherever and take classes and such you are being paid. How you are wording it is just semantics and frankly smells a bit shady. What do you do with your overages?
As a neutral party here, I think we're becoming a bit guilty of assuming the worst intentions instead of the best in each other.
I think there is plenty of room for this to be perfectly acceptable. For instance, and instructors may not take a wage for teaching classes... but does that mean it should cost that instuctor money in order to do so?
I think a portion of membership dues being used for the professional development of staff (instructor courses, hotels to go with students for tournaments etc.) is a very appropriate use (especially considering the instructor by all rights could be asking for a wage).
I'd look at it less as payment, and more offsetting the costs so the instructors are not losing money as a result of teaching.
 

Dirty Dog

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Personally, I have no qualms about Instructors not getting paid. But if they're doing a lot of teaching and still paying tuition - they're being used.
Agreed. If it's a commercial school, instructors should be paid. Because that's what businesses do. If not, then they're volunteers. In no case should anyone ever be required to volunteer.
 

andyjeffries

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I responded to Your post so the comments had to come from you.

I meant specifically which part of my post. You reply at the bottom of each post entirely, it makes it hard to follow specifically which part youre commenting on.

As far as where were you I meant where were you during your KKW courses? Inside, outside? In a physical location I assume. I assume the latter.

I was on the course, so that was indoors - either in the lecture rooms at Kukkiwon or on the Kukkiwon main dojang floor. Feels like a trick question?

Multiple people have read your posts to say you advocate shutting down or at least not promoting the active Kwans.

Could you please quote precisely where I said that I advocated that? I dont recall saying any such thing, so maybe its a misunderstanding over word choice. But without you quoting specifically what I said (rather than what you interpreted it to say) it's hard to be sure.

I suggest you choose your wording more carefully as this was offensive.
If your club is paying the fees for you and your BBs to fly to/from wherever and take classes and such you are being paid. How you are wording it is just semantics and frankly smells a bit shady. What do you do with your overages?

Theyre still in the clubs bank account. The club pays towards education for the instructors, not everything required. That has enabled us to upskill our instructors, which has improved standards at our school.

I work with many stateside Dojangs as the presenter (back some time now) and promoting seminars and programs lead by the highest ranking GMs and national and Olympic level competitors from north/middle/south America, many of whom I am still friends with. We do not flaunt that. We just do it.

I wasnt flaunting it either, just explaining where the money goes and I quoted the part of your message where you talked about it, so you should know exactly why I gave that information. It wasn't to flaunt anything.

I purchased the first strip building where my first Dojang began and still is when I was a 1st Dan in 1986. The second building about 5 year later.

You said you had a day job in your previous post. I merely pointed you to my profile so you can see that I have as well, and then some. Between my wife and I we own five businesses.

Ok cool.

To infer that somehow waters down our TKD is what I was calling BS on. That is quite offensive to me.

Im now wondering if this is because I admittedly used an imprecise word. When I said you in some of my writing about fee earning instructors and full time dojangs, I should have used one. For example, when one has a full time dojang one will always have situations where one must risk compromising their morals in order to achieve ones desired/required financial goals. I thought using one sounded ridiculously British though and that everyone would understand the usage of you during those explanations to be generic people, not you specifically dvcochran.

I have no qualms with you and yes, this is purely a conversation, but dont think myself and others here will not get defensive about some of the things you have said in this thread.

Everyone is allowed to take offence to whatever they want. Im not saying all full time instructors are corrupt, just that theres a higher chance of risk of it when you need to get paid, compared to my position of not wanting to be paid.

Having students pay but not paying instructors is simply wrong.

I entirely disagree. This isnt slave labour, theres no contract. They can walk at any time, start up a rival club with my blessing. They are also all on the management committee for the club, we vote on things equally between the masters and all finances are open for them to see. We are all volunteers. I understand when one thinks of instructing only as a paid job this would feel like were ripping them off, however from our viewpoint its a hobby, and a work of love. None of us want to be paid for it.

As I said before having classes, seminars, and gear paid for by the club is to some degree equal to payment, however I am not in a position to do the math to know if that is equitable in your situation.

OK, so then aside from instructor specific education (which has happened three times in a decade, twice to Korea and one series of seminars in the UK), then the "payment" is for all members of the club equally? From the lowest coloured belts to myself, we all use that same club equipment and we all attend seminars that are free or subsidised. Does that help explain things?

Being passionate about your MA is great; I wish everyone was. But you basically bashed all other TKD styles/systems that are not KKW. That is not cool and patently wrong in so many ways that clearly you are not even aware of. Most of us do not have nor do we want that luxury. Clearly an ignorance is bliss situation for you.

I really didn't. I only intend to bash people that claim they are doing X Kwan, when X Kwan supports Kukkiwon officially. I have no qualms with Kwan offshoots, I have no qualms with ITF, ATA or any individual club's training. It's when they use their Kwan label to explain why they don't do Kukkiwon Taekwondo to Kukkiwon syllabus and standards, even though their Kwan HQ does.

I wish you the best.

You too, this thread is genuinely not said/intended with any malice.
 

andyjeffries

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Agreed. If it's a commercial school, instructors should be paid. Because that's what businesses do. If not, then they're volunteers. In no case should anyone ever be required to volunteer.

Absolutely. We aren't a commercial school. All of our instructors (including me) are volunteers. No one is required to volunteer (although there's no "paid instructor" option at our school - you're a student or a volunteer instructor). Any of them could walk away at any time. Any of them could set up their own competing club 200 metres away from mine, as a commercial school, with paying instructors - and they would do so with my blessing. I've told them that many times and as much as some people here may not believe me (because it hasn't happened yet), I stand by it.
 

andyjeffries

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As a neutral party here, I think we're becoming a bit guilty of assuming the worst intentions instead of the best in each other.

I definitely agree there's that scope. And I think maybe I exacerbated the situation by using "you" in sentences rather than "one", which @dvcochran may have taken to mean him specifically, whereas I mostly meant it as a generic "someone". For example:

Personally I feel that if you're doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where you have to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or your morals. Do you test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Do you accept more students than you realistically can teach in a class because you need their fees. That sort of thing.

Would be better written as:

Personally I feel that if one is doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where one has to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or their morals. Does one test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Does one accept more students than one realistically can teach in a class because one needs their fees. That sort of thing.

Even when I read it now though I sound so British! I thought it was clear I wasn't specifically calling @dvcochran out for doing those things, I thought it was obvious it was a hypothetical person. But maybe not and that's why he's taken so much offense/jumped to the defensive. If so, I genuinely apologise for that.

I've hopefully been consistent in using "X Kwan" rather than naming a Kwan specifically to keep it generic.

I think there is plenty of room for this to be perfectly acceptable. For instance, and instructors may not take a wage for teaching classes... but does that mean it should cost that instuctor money in order to do so?

So the founder of our club and the instructor that took over after him, genuinely had to pay something every so often to keep the club running. When I took over, I put in places processes and practices so that it's not the case now and the club makes a profit enough to buy equipment and educational costs. Fortunately all of us volunteer instructors live within 10-15 minutes of the club, so it doesn't really cost us any money to teach.

I think a portion of membership dues being used for the professional development of staff (instructor courses, hotels to go with students for tournaments etc.) is a very appropriate use (especially considering the instructor by all rights could be asking for a wage).
I'd look at it less as payment, and more offsetting the costs so the instructors are not losing money as a result of teaching.
Agreed, thank you.
 

Steve

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I definitely agree there's that scope. And I think maybe I exacerbated the situation by using "you" in sentences rather than "one", which @dvcochran may have taken to mean him specifically, whereas I mostly meant it as a generic "someone". For example:

Personally I feel that if you're doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where you have to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or your morals. Do you test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Do you accept more students than you realistically can teach in a class because you need their fees. That sort of thing.

Would be better written as:

Personally I feel that if one is doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where one has to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or their morals. Does one test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Does one accept more students than one realistically can teach in a class because one needs their fees. That sort of thing.

Even when I read it now though I sound so British! I thought it was clear I wasn't specifically calling @dvcochran out for doing those things, I thought it was obvious it was a hypothetical person. But maybe not and that's why he's taken so much offense/jumped to the defensive. If so, I genuinely apologise for that.

I've hopefully been consistent in using "X Kwan" rather than naming a Kwan specifically to keep it generic.



So the founder of our club and the instructor that took over after him, genuinely had to pay something every so often to keep the club running. When I took over, I put in places processes and practices so that it's not the case now and the club makes a profit enough to buy equipment and educational costs. Fortunately all of us volunteer instructors live within 10-15 minutes of the club, so it doesn't really cost us any money to teach.


Agreed, thank you.
So British! :D

tenor.gif
 

dvcochran

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Personally I feel that if you're doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where you have to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or your morals. Do you test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Do you accept more students than you realistically can teach in a class because you need their fees. That sort of thing.

Would be better written as:

Personally I feel that if one is doing it for the money there's always going to come a time where one has to chose between the financial side (whether it's "I want $X,000 per month" or "I need $X,000 per month to keep the dojang doors open") or their morals. Does one test/pass that student that really shouldn't. Does one accept more students than one realistically can teach in a class because one needs their fees. That sort of thing.
It reads the same either way. It is the inference that for profit schools as some point have to sacrifice their morals. I would better say that is a school is/was going to do that there was at least a modicum of that line of thinking from the start.
It is a Tough hill to sled trying to make a living as a MA instructor as your sole source of income. I have never done that. I know of 3 schools near me that folded last year.
So the founder of our club and the instructor that took over after him, genuinely had to pay something every so often to keep the club running. When I took over, I put in places processes and practices so that it's not the case now and the club makes a profit enough to buy equipment and educational costs. Fortunately all of us volunteer instructors live within 10-15 minutes of the club, so it doesn't really cost us any money to teach.
Like everyone else in the service industries I tool Huge losses last year. Financially we are very solid and have the ability to ride through it. There were several lean times early on and throughout the years where I had to take losses to keep the schools going. Something I don't think a lot about nor talk a lot about. If I was in this only to make money I would have been out a Long time ago. Compared to my main business (integration/control/automation) the margins are paper thin.

Again, it is your inference that was off putting . Add this to the fact that you are semantically getting paid, whether you think that or not, and that just compounds the reality of it.

I do encourage you to step back and see things from a higher level. A person at your rank should see this on their own. Particularly one that is already affiliated with another style/system.
Like I said WT/KKW has been very good to me and I have given a lot of my self and my resources to it. But I am not blinded by it's shortcomings. Every organization has them. I have seen this ebb & tide so many times with the change of leadership is it dizzying sometimes.

I have never been mad or even offended really. But it is imperative for anyone to stand up when something is sideways.
 

dvcochran

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As a neutral party here, I think we're becoming a bit guilty of assuming the worst intentions instead of the best in each other.
I think there is plenty of room for this to be perfectly acceptable. For instance, and instructors may not take a wage for teaching classes... but does that mean it should cost that instuctor money in order to do so?
I think a portion of membership dues being used for the professional development of staff (instructor courses, hotels to go with students for tournaments etc.) is a very appropriate use (especially considering the instructor by all rights could be asking for a wage).
I'd look at it less as payment, and more offsetting the costs so the instructors are not losing money as a result of teaching.
Thank you' I fully agree with your opening comment.
In general, there has to be some sort of conduit for a teaching opportunity to be made available to an instructor. This takes money and resources. The exception being people who teach at a local park or out of their garage and such. I doubt these people are getting money for their own additional training.
If dues are being received (as in Andy Jeffries case) that is For profit. Painting it differently because it feels/sounds better is misleading at best.
At some point one would assume there is either a windfall or a shortage; it is the nature of business. This is a slippery slope for true NFP businesses sometimes and has gotten more than a few in trouble.
I prefer to be forthright; if I make a profit, I make a profit; if I take a loss, I take a loss. Both have happened in all of our businesses throughout the years. Sometimes on paper, sometimes true bottom line losses. I took huge losses last year. No bail out money here.

I don't have issue with anyone on here. But when someone presents something as something else I will call it out.
 

Dirty Dog

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It reads the same either way. It is the inference that for profit schools as some point have to sacrifice their morals.
Nonsense. He says quite clearly that you will, at some time, be faced with a choice. Do what's best for the profit margin, or do what's best for the integrity of your art. At no time does he even suggest what decision you will come to. Only that you will be faced with the choice.
And he is absolutely, positively, 100% correct.
 

WaterGal

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I will just say if a school owner cannot figure out that stuff they do not need to be a school owner. That is a completely different dynamic from being an instructor but I am not certain you see this.
FWIW, many times I have encouraged people on this forum to take a business class or two if they are struggling with the operational stuff. If they have a mentor (close instructor or GM) all the better.
I do not expect to learn the type of stuff mentioned from a MA's seminar instructor. That would just be filler to me. I never remember anything like that in my KKW Master Class.

It's common for school owners to not know this, or even to know that this is a thing to know. Mr WaterGal and I had a school for probably 4 or 5 years before we put together a really tight curriculum and lesson plan system that instructors can be easily trained on. Our old GM from Korea never had anything like that, he'd just go "you have black belt, now you can teaching class". Like any warm body that knew the basic KKW material was good enough, and you'd figure out how to teach on your own or quit.
 

WaterGal

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Nonsense. He says quite clearly that you will, at some time, be faced with a choice. Do what's best for the profit margin, or do what's best for the integrity of your art. At no time does he even suggest what decision you will come to. Only that you will be faced with the choice.
And he is absolutely, positively, 100% correct.

Yeah, there's definitely going to be times in running a school where you have to choose between some financial gain and actually providing a good service.

However, I think that a lot of the time, when you make that bargain, the financial gain is actually only short-term. People paying for a service tend to notice sooner or later that you're cutting corners. I've seen plenty of schools where the owner tried to increase their profit margin by getting a bunch of teenage 1st dans to teach class for free and without providing any ongoing instructor training. And maybe the school owner could buy a Lexus or whatever that year, but in a few years the school closes down.
 

dvcochran

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Nonsense. He says quite clearly that you will, at some time, be faced with a choice. Do what's best for the profit margin, or do what's best for the integrity of your art. At no time does he even suggest what decision you will come to. Only that you will be faced with the choice.
And he is absolutely, positively, 100% correct.
Sure hard decisions will be faced and Yes, he clearly talked about morals being sacrificed. There were no vagaries there.
But why can it not be both? A well planned out mission statement and the integrity to stick to it can and will net both success financially and high teaching standards/morals. We all agree they go hand and hand. Nobody ever said it was going to be gravy the entire time.
That 'choice' that you mention must be built into the model that must be established before the business ever opens it's doors. So no nonsense here; business morality is a hard, unmovable line, no matter what else has to be sacrificed. In some cases this could mean sacrificing the business itself. That is how the model must be setup.

I have worked with at least a couple dozen school startups. Two in particular I remember knowing they would never make it because they just could not wrap their head around having a mission/goal/target, whatever word you want to use. They were completely steeped in the 'i will make it up as I go' mentality and could not be sway. Each had a great start because of the passion of the instructor/owners but only lasted 2-3 years because neither had planned for the inevitable leveling that occurs. When things started getting difficult and the shine wore off of being an instructor/school owner they each folded.

Here is a good place to say it is worth noting that there is very little comparison between being an instructor, an instructor/school owner, and a school owner. Each are very, very, different.

Business as a whole is a never ending sinusoidal wave. Owners who watch and anticipate the highs and lows equip their business to be prepared for the lows and take advantage of the highs.

The most consistent failure I have seen, particularly in commercial MA schools, is when they begin to have a modicum of success and profit. Too often this measure is set as the low for the bell curve and they begin to frivolously overspend without investment and do not bank money for the inevitable dips in income. In short they run out of money. This is what I assume @andyjeffries referred to.
It is a sad and tragic occurrence but I have seen it as a silver lining for MA's industry as a whole.
Most of these failed ventures originate from a young, new BB who really, really wants to have their own school but have zero clue about the business side. A few figure it out and are better for it. Some of those that are lost fit the 'sacrificing morals' model and, as a whole the MA community is better off that they did not make it.
 
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