Shanghai and Beijing (SHB 0319)

This position is not currently available

A highly able and skilled educator is required as soon as possible for this full-time tutoring position working with one student, a businessman in his late thirties. The student left formal education in his late teens and went into business, where he has been very successful. He has now decided that he would like to invest in himself, to learn English to a high standard, and learn to understand and appreciate western culture.

The role will be based mainly in Shanghai and Beijing with considerable travel to a wide range of destinations around the world. The role requires someone who is highly intelligent, erudite, cultured, well-read, sporty, and both socially and culturally versatile.

The Client

The Client is a Chinese businessman in his late thirties. He attended university in China for a few months after he left school and decided to drop out and start his own business. He is now the owner of one of the most successful online companies in China, along with many other businesses. He is confident and ambitious while simultaneously easy-going. Although his business life keeps him busy, he makes time for a physically active lifestyle and enjoys scuba diving, soccer, and sailing.

Although he has a level of conversational English that is sufficient to allow him to communicate with his business partners and friends, he always feels that there are subtleties, nuances, and underlying meanings that he misses during these conversations. He has come to realise that there are a great many facets of Western life that he cannot access due to the limitations of his understanding of English language and culture. These span several spheres, from mastery of pronunciation and international etiquette, through understanding of fine wine and culinary culture, to the appreciation of classical literature and poems. Whether the reasons that he has not had the opportunities to develop these skills yet are due to insufficient time, motivation, resources or confidence is inconsequential. He has now decided to give himself an educator who can illumine those aspects of the world that he is keen to access.

Role of the Tutor

The Tutor’s role in this position is exceedingly wide. He should be a native English speaker, who speaks English with Received Pronunciation or at least free from any strong regional dialect. He should be personally able to teach the Client excellent spoken English. He wishes to learn to speak English so that he will no longer miss any underlying meanings or accidentally offend anyone in a conversation in English. This means that not only must his vocabulary and grammar become sound, but also that he will need to develop idiomatic understanding and application as well as appropriate meter and timbre. The Tutor should also be able to provide him with enough background knowledge to comprehend the subtleties, nuances, and musicality of English, and eventually be able to read between the lines during his conversations with his business partners and friends. The Tutor’s own spoken language should be of a high standard. He and his Tutor will spend a good deal of time in one another’s company and in conversation; there is very much to be learned from such conversation.

This role is not limited to conversation and formal instruction. The Tutor is expected to be a worldly individual – well-travelled so that he has enough experience and general knowledge to share with the Client about the world around them. The Tutor should constantly be researching and planning a culturally rich range of suitable activities, such as visits to art galleries and museums, restaurants, and sites of historical or contemporary interest that the Tutor thinks to be an essential part of this ‘life-curriculum’ in its most encompassing sense. For all these activities, the Tutor must help the Client understand their relevance within the context of his personal development. For example, he would like to surprise his American girlfriend on Valentine’s Day by reciting her a poem in English over a nice bottle of champagne. The Tutor would be expected to help him choose an appropriate piece and teach him to recite it well. It would be even more impressive if he could explain why he chose that specific flavour or brand of champagne.

This is a demanding role so it will be important that the Tutor is fit and healthy, someone with a huge amount of energy and someone enjoys life. It will be necessary for the Tutor to embrace the role and be able to dedicate most of their time to it. Many evenings will be spent in social situations in addition to time in more formal tutoring. In such circumstances, the Tutor is expected to be professional, reserved in a sense, but still fun to be with. The Tutor should also be aware that there will be alcohol and smoking involved, so it is essential that the Tutor can maintain his professionalism throughout these more convivial times. Although this role lies between a friend and a teacher, the Tutor must be extremely professional and private service oriented, and never take advantage of the opportunities that will come from becoming a close acquaintance of someone with the Client’s social status and reputation.

The ideal Tutor will probably be single, a similar age to the Client, with an excellent degree in a subject that requires strong verbal communication, such as English, history, or politics. A qualified teacher is definitely a plus, but not a requirement. The Tutor should have the ability to explain things clearly and thoroughly in a way that the student can easily understand and appreciate.

Hours and Holidays

This is a full-time job. Typically, the Tutor should expect to be available for a maximum of 12 hours a day between noon and midnight, up to twenty days per month. The Client takes one week off almost every month, so it is very unlikely that he would have 20 days every month to spend with the Tutor. But unless the Client has specifically told the Tutor that he is not needed for a period of time, he should remain nearby and available such that tutoring could resume at short notice. There should be plenty of time for preparation and planning during the prescribed hours.

Note that the working week is an average of five days. The Tutor will be entitled to two consecutive days off per week on average and should not expect these days to be at the usual weekend. There may be times when, due to travel considerations, the Tutor accumulates untaken ‘weekend’ days. If this happens the Tutor will either be given additional time off or will be compensated by payment in lieu at the prevailing rate. Likewise, the Tutor will be entitled to nine (9) weeks off per annum at times convenient to both the Tutor and the Client.

Accommodation, Travel, and Miscellaneous

The Client will provide suitable, safe, private accommodation in all locations. In Shanghai, this will likely be a furnished apartment in walking distance to the Client’s own house. In other locations it could be a hotel, short-term furnished let or apartment-hotel, berth on a yacht etc.

The Client will be responsible for all expenses on these accommodations except for the Tutor’s personal phone bills, food shopping in Shanghai, or any personal expenses the Tutor incurs that are not work-related.

A car will be provided for reasonable local use.

The Tutor should lead a healthy lifestyle and be in good physical shape. It will be essential that the Tutor enjoys sports and travel. He will need to hold a clean driving license. Although light smoking is acceptable when the Tutor is with the Client, it is prohibited in front of his young children.

The Client is likely to invite his Tutor to join him, his friends and/or his colleagues in more congenial or social settings where discussion of his studies or more advanced topics might be the norm. The Tutor therefore must be gregarious and engaging at this level.

Contractual details

Start: As soon as possible

Duration: At least one year

Hours: Full time

Salary: $144,000 USD per annum

Accommodation: Provided

Car: Provided

Vacation: 45 days per annum


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