Thursday, May 13, 2010
Is it Worth My/Your Time?
When given an opportunity for a new work assignment or project, many of us just look at the amount to be paid or salary. If the number looks good, we accept. Consideration of more than just money is not specific to Tokyo, but in such a large city and with lengthy commute times - this consideration becomes important.
Recently I accepted a job assignment. At initial glance, it seemed great. First, the job was teaching at a Senior High School - this is my ideal job setting. The pay, while not super high, was acceptable. For ease of this stories calculation examples, let us say the pay was $100 per day.
My work day was to be 8:30-4:00pm with a one-hour lunch. Okay, simple division...$14.28 per hour. It's "okay" pay - plus it is valuable "in Japan" experience!
But I had commuting cost; $7 per day. So, pay is actually $93...divide by hours...$13.28 per hour.
Wait! how much time am I spending commuting? 1 hour and 45 minutes each way! Total of 3 hours, 30 minutes. So, my work day is basically 10 hours, 30 minutes...divide by pay...$9.02 per hour.
I had to decide, and you should consider any project similarly, is my time worth it? Based on work hours, commute time, commute costs, aggravation of lengthy commute time...is the pay worth it?
I think it is important to develop a personal "minimum wage" that is acceptable, and add in commute time to work hours - and then see how much you are making per hour.
Is the experience going to be that good? Is the long commute making you lose other opportunities for work and friendships?