Institute of Reading Development
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Institute of Reading Development Employee Reviews

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4.0
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Good experience overall
Enjoyed my work there and the people I worked with. Management was a little disorganized and never felt a ton of job security. My department was all remote, which had it's positives and negatives.
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5.0
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Work that you can feel good about and lots of remote opportunities.
I have been very pleased with my experience with IRD for over 4 summers.

There are supportive managers ready to offer support as needed. Tell someone you have a job working in a call center and people think of work that is depersonalized and relentlessly filled with talk yet at the same time days can be spent with no interaction with a coworker.


Now imagine your working in a virtual call center. What do people think when you tell them that? and after people get past their initial suspicion that they would want to roll out of bed and 2 minutes later bee at work and at the end of the day have their pjs on already. In the couple of seconds it takes people to realize that that sounds kind of awful too they have had time to add up what you said "virtual call center" and they picture bleak days ahead for you.


And it would be easy for a virtual call center to just magnify the down sides of a standard call center. The potential is ther with some jobs with IRD if I know folks who have turned a bad call into justification fror being completely cynical and jaded. Any remote job calls on some internal resources one of which is to see the value of what you do. Of all the remote jobs out there you have all your jobs where a company is going to pay you to shop that never seem to materialize and the endless opportunities in some form of data entry for those who love to snuggle up each evening to a good spread sheet I think the work that you do at IRD has a lot more to offer. There is no day that I can't find something where I can know that I was able to spend time working
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3.0
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Great entry level, but hard for advancement
Given the seasonal nature of IRD, many new hires are released once their "season" is over. Some are transferred to different departments and are able to stay with the company. Others are rehired at a later date. Advancement in this kind of environment is full of stops and starts.
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5.0
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Excellent PT $$
I have worked for IRD over several seasons and have always made great money each season. There is paid training, no micromanaging, excellent commission structure, totally flexible schedule, inbound sales, and there's 100% pride to answer the phone to provide a product with huge benefits that everyone can use and/or needs.
My only con is that I have a very successful selling career outside of this, use this as a PT job outside of that, and every season I am welcomed back and every year I inquire about a FT position within the company and that's as far as it goes. As far as I can tell, there is no room for advancement or to become a permanent employee.
Pros
flexibility in schedule, pay, etc....
Cons
seasonal employment, no opportunity to grow with the company
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5.0
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Have drive and know how to listen
great job as long as you care about what you do and are money driven. parent can be difficult to work with, especially when discussing their children's education. So exude confidence, understanding, care, and resolution abilities.
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5.0
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Great support provided for teachers and clear communication
I love working for the IRD every summer. It is a great opportunity for new teachers to gain experience. The teacher supervisors are very organized, communicative and supportive of new and returning teachers. If you love reading and teaching this is an excellent job for you!
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4.0
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Enrollment Coordinator
The Reading Institute offers a work-life balance and the opportunity to provide families excellent affordable reading and writing programs for children and adults! If you like the to work from home, and help children and adults across the nation to develop a lifetime love of reading, I strongly recommend working with the Institute of Reading Development!
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for this review. I'm proud that our work-from-home sales positions provide flexibility for our employees and make a difference for so many families.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
4.0
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Great mission, great coworkers
I am a long-time IRD employee and really love working here. My coworkers are all smart and full of heart, with a deep belief in the importance of reading in the lives of children and adults alike. My manager works hard to set me up for success, and is really good about providing feedback, both positive and constructive. I love doing work that helps children to fall in love with books. When I first started, I felt like the culture was a bit workaholic, but I feel like work-life balance has gotten a lot better over the years, and I love the flexibility to work from home.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
I'm glad you've consistently had a positive experience in your role at the Institute, and that you can see the positive difference your contributions make for families. Thank you for this review.

- Doug Evans. CEO
4.0
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Good Place to Work
It's a good place to work, especially if you're just starting out in teaching or are an experienced teacher who is looking to supplement your income in the summer. Management is kind and helpful.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for your kind review and your work teaching our programs.

- John Boyd, Director of Instruction
5.0
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Great Experience If You Enjoy Working with Books and Kids
If you love teaching, books, and kids, I can see no reason you wouldn't enjoy working for the Institute. It's a packaged deal, though, and you need to have an enthusiasm for all three. Teachers may work in two capacities--either as in-person instructors over the summer (busiest time) or as online instructors at different parts of the year. I have done both and have had great experiences with being a "physical" and "virtual" instructor.

Working with kids is rewarding, but can also be very challenging, and you need to be flexible and patient enough to maintain an attitude of warmth toward every student, regardless of ability level or enthusiasm. Some students will not be excited about the program and will not like reading at the start, and if you approach the job with that expectation, you can work actively to change that by the end of the program. I will say that you should be prepared that you may sometimes have unruly students (particularly in the middles-school classes). You will have weekly supervisor meetings, and if you do have a student/students who get out of hand, approach your supervisor immediately to come up with a plan to get in touch with the student's (students') parents in order to resolve the issue. In the summer, you only have 5 weeks.


On the management side of things, my favorite part about working for the Institute was how open and accessible everything is and has always been. That is, I rarely felt like I was asked or expected to do things I didn't know about. If you work as a summer reading teacher, you *will* receive a very large shipment of boxes
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for this detailed review. It's crucial that all of our teachers exhibit enthusiasm for books and reading, teaching, and our students. It is gratifying to hear that our training program clearly outlined the expectations and specifics of the job for you, and prepared you to succeed in both physical and online teaching environments.

- John Boyd, Director of Instruction
5.0
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Read, teach, and be merry!
The Institute of Reading Development provides teachers with the opportunity to teach beloved texts to students of all ages. The style of the program allows students to explore these texts in an environment that is open and engaging, pairing reading with dramatizations that truly bring the stories to life. Teachers can expect both small and larger classes, and a typical work day usually has no more than four classes. The Institute provides ample training for all teachers, especially those teachers just starting out. The teacher hotline gives teachers peace of mind in the field with help for any situation just a phone call away. Teacher supervisors check in regularly and make sure that teachers feel supported throughout their teaching terms. This job requires you to be self driven and excited to share the stories with these readers--high energy is a must!
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for providing a detailed description of what teachers can expect on the job. I'm happy to hear that you enjoyed your experience teaching with us as well as the training and support we provide. We strive to help our teachers in the classroom from the beginning to the end of each teaching season.

- John Boyd - Director of Instruction
5.0
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IRD Teaching Experience
If you're looking for an easy, stress-free job this is not the position for you. If, however, you are interested in a crash course in teaching and very real classroom experience teaching children, adolescents, and adults reading and/or reading strategies then look no further. A full-time summer teaching position with the Institute is not for the faint of heart. You will drive, walk, talk, teach, and read more than you thought humanly possible. You will have one-on-ones with students, with parents, and with supervisors. You will be sore, and you will be tired. But you will learn a lot. You will learn about the art of teaching (indeed it is an art): classroom management, time management, and imposing your will. You will learn about how to be organized, how to manage stress,and how to be direct yet diplomatic. If you love reading and learning and are willing to work hard (really hard) then give IRD a shot! The supervisors are great--they want to help you learn and grow and will work with you to do so. You get paid for your time teaching, driving after 30 minutes, preparing for your lessons, and enter class data. You get to help kids and adults enjoy reading.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for leaving this review and for highlighting the hard work and dedication exhibited by our teachers. We provide the in-depth training and support that our teachers need to help many, many students succeed with reading in our programs every summer. I'm happy to hear that you found the job meaningful and liked helping students of all ages enjoy reading more.

- John Boyd, Director of Instruction
5.0
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Productive and enjoyable work-life balance.
Superb Management.

Sales and Marketing for a reading program that helps changes the lives of PK-12th, university and adults.


The hardest part of this job is that you are on calls all day if you are a successful sales leader. It can get overwhelming but the reward is wonderful.

For me, the most enjoyable part of this job is helping people, Education and helping people are very important to me.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 17, 2020
Thank you for this review. Helping students of all ages learn new reading skills is very important to us as well. I am happy to hear that you found your work rewarding and enjoyed helping children and families find reading programs that are right for them.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
4.0
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Well-organized with good communication
The Institute for Reading Development provides excellent training, orientation and support for Program Advisors to become successful advocates for children's summer reading programs and support for successful sales. At the end of the day, it's good knowing that children will benefit from the programs. Many people work from home, the workplace is well-organized with good communication. After 50 years, the institute has never stopped improving it's curriculum and procedures. It's generally seasonal and asks for focus and attention to customers. If it works for you, it' is a rewarding job.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
I appreciate you highlighting our excellent training and support for salespeople, and the quality of the programs we offer. Thank you for taking time to review your experience.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
4.0
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Great seasonal full time sales position. Legitimate work from home opportunity with and established company.
This is a seasonal, sales, job. Their season is from March to June each year and layoffs begin end of May beginning of June based on sales ranking.

The only metric that counts is your close on 1st call. You get paid for enrollments that result from a call back from either your initial contact that is closed by another or a call you receive where the person spoke with another rep. If you happen to be on the receiving end of a lot of call backs, you earn decent money but it harms your standing on the whole. I personally think that's extremely unfair.


The compensation is great if you're looking for a short season. Perfect for retired people that want to work full time for 3 or so months in the year.


Excellent product, service to offer. Company is mature and they've kept up with the market. They also have a positive reputation for the most part and people do call back to just enroll in the program the following year.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thanks for your review. It's nice to be able to offer a sales position for a product and service employees can believe in and stand behind. I get that you aren't positive about our performance metrics, but your understanding of them is inaccurate. While many of our sales staff work seasonally, there are always opportunities for top agents to continue into the summer and beyond, including opportunities to join our year-round staff, as well. If you decide to apply for future openings, please be sure to discuss your concerns about measuring performance with us so that we can be on the same page.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
3.0
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A seasonal lifestyle
Many of the positions at IRD are considered "seasonal". The emphasis of the company lies in yearly summer reading programs. Depending on the position, employment will lead up to the start of programs, or support them during the summer months. Many times seasonal employees are released at the end of their contract.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for your review. Because of the nature of our seasonal teaching opportunities and sales positions, I know it is challenging for many to say goodbye to a job they enjoy. I am very grateful for the work all of our seasonal staff does each year.

-Doug Evans, CEO
4.0
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Fantastic Job with One Major Concern
Almost everything about the Institute of Reading Development is amazing! The managers challenge you to better your performance through pep-talks, strategies, and motivation. So long as you work your hours diligently, you're pretty much guaranteed a decent paycheck. Your coworkers are supportive and kind. Training is thorough and continuous. Though it's a seasonal job, I just wish they would do something to help ease the anxiety of a sudden lay-off. At any moment, you can get a call saying that your time with IRD is over this season (even if you are a good agent) and you're let go the very same day waiting to see if you'll be invited back the next season. That's probably the hardest part of the job.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
I want to start by thanking you for the work you do to spread the love of reading to many families. I understand that it can be difficult leaving a seasonal job that you enjoy and that has helped you become a more effective salesperson. We try to be transparent about when our season begins to wind down each year, and we like to give several days notice about any layoffs. I appreciate you taking time to leave us a review.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
5.0
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Best job ever
It’s the greatest job ever you get to help kids and students and adults, you get to really help make a difference and make money.
You can make as much as you put in and set your own hours. Great training experience great environment...
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
It's great that you found the Institute to be a flexible and supportive work environment, and that you felt that your work made a difference. Thank you for your review.

- Tiffany Gilbert, Sales Manager
4.0
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A company of hard workers with big ideas and a lot of heart.
The Institute of Reading Development delivers delightful and effective curriculum to a large number of students every year and manages to do this with a very lean core staff. It's a little bit of magic and a lot of hard work. The highly talented seasonal staff work just as hard. Hours can be very long for everyone during the summer and in preparation for the summer, since that is when the majority of classes are in session. I wish that the work could be spread more evening throughout the year, but the time and effort always feel well-spent. I connect deeply with the core mission of the reading programs and the company culture: sharing a love of books, promoting literacy, and providing educational enrichment. If you share those passions, chances are you'll get a lot out of working here, too, even for just a single season. In addition, the company leadership is packed with inspiring people who value the deeper aspects of good literature and generally lead from/toward a place of personal integrity. That's a rare quality to find in business.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Thank you for this heartfelt review. Our staff love books and reading and sincerely want to pass this love on to students. We have worked hard to cultivate a great year-round team of like-minded people who share the Institute's goals. I'm happy that you are part of our team.

- Doug Evans, CEO
5.0
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Meaningful, Rewarding, and Engaging Work
I started as a summer reading teacher and now work full-time for the Institute, and I am grateful for every opportunity IRD has given me. IRD's culture of transparency, in combination with being warm and direct, has challenged me to be the best version of myself at work and in my personal life. We are always training, and this keeps every aspect of my job engaging and dynamic. Teaching is a craft, and we are always looking for ways to improve, whether you have no prior teaching experience or decades worth of classroom experience. This job requires you to give it all you've got, whether you're a summer classroom teacher or part of the full-time year-round staff. We are driven by our one shared agenda. We care about our students, we care about the books we teach, and we are passionate about our mission. For me, this work has been the most meaningful work I've done in my life, and I am thrilled to continue learning, growing, and connecting with others through great literature.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 20, 2020
Many of our full-time employees started out as summer reading teachers. I enjoy watching all of our teachers learn and grow in their careers, and in their commitment to sharing the love of reading with students across the country. Thank you for your contributions to the Institute.

- John Boyd, Director of Instruction
5.0
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Intense but Fulfilling
This job is very intense and very all-consuming. At the same time, my managers were absolutely the most supportive and helpful that I've ever had. The company had a great collective vision and did a great job helping us all feel that we shared in that vision and did meaningful work. I would work for this company again if I had the chance.
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Official response from Institute of Reading Development
February 18, 2020
Your review highlights our mission to inspire a lifelong love a reading in every student. It's a meaningful mission for the families we work with - and all of our employees. I appreciate your contributions to the work we do and thank you for your feedback.

- Doug Evans, CEO
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Overall rating
3.9
Based on 148 reviews
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3.8
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3.3
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3.0
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3.9
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3.9
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