By Lucy Chabot Reed
New yacht crew gets loads of “advice” from all corners of yachting. The trick is sorting through it.
Two former crew who now have careers helping crew offered their own tips at two seminars in The Oasis Lounge yesterday.
A CV is often the first impression a captain or yacht department head has of a new crew member. Making it stand out from the literally hundreds of others that crew agents and captains go through is the key to getting the interview and, with luck, the job.
Former yacht Chef Gavin McMichaels who runs SuperYachtResume.com dispelled these six “myths” of yachting industry CVs:
- A CV does not have to be limited to one page. The industry accepts two pages.
- A yachting CV certainly can include non-yachting jobs and experience. Best to list them than to have gaps in work history. “You can make everything yachting related,” he said. “Did you get promoted? Did you have responsibilities? Did you work on a team and meet goals? I don’t care what the business is, if you put that in, that’s something they [captains] know they can build on. They’re looking for a type.”
- Do not talk about yourself in the objective; that’s for the bio or “about me” section. Keep the objective as specific as possible. Casting a big net — “I’m looking for a deckhand position on a yacht, power or sail, private or charter” — will not draw attention.
- White shirts in the headshot photo are too stark. A light colored Polo-style shirt is best.
- Hair in headshots should be worn as neat and natural as possible. The tight ponytail can come across as severe.
- CVs can include strategic use of color, and not just blue.
Some other CV tips McMichaels shared include keeping a full address and passport number off, listing work history from newest to oldest, and “leveraging the roommate factor.” “Include what you are passionate about,” he said. “One of my clients had a fear of heights so for her 21st birthday, she went bungee jumping to overcome her fear. That says a lot about her.”
Former Chief Stew Jo Damgaard of Bluewater Yachting offered a host of tips for deckhands and stews, as well as tips on how any crew can have a successful first job.
Once the CV is a success and that first job is landed, new crew often aren’t aware what they have signed up for. Former Chief Stew Jo Damgaard, who handles entry-level crew at Bluewater Yachting in Fort Lauderdale, offered a host of tips for deckhands and stews to shine in their respective jobs, as well as these tips on how to have a successful first job:
- Respect other crew members and the crew mess. When you leave, tidy up, rinse your plate, empty the trash if it needs it
- Put your phone on silent
- Don’t slam doors
- Thank the chef
- Don’t spread rumors or gossip
- Break down cardboard boxes on the dock
- Keep the shoe box tidy
- Don’t step on the dock mat
- Pack lightly in a collapsible bag
- Follow orders, regardless of the age of the person giving them.
Lucy Chabot Reed is publisher of Triton Today. Comments are welcome below.
Today’s lineup of free seminars in the Oasis Lounge.
10am-Noon Knife sharpening with Culinary Convenience
10am Barista training, Theresa Mainwaring of Bluewater Yachting
12pm Yacht CV: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly, Gavin McMichaels of SuperYachtResume.com
1pm Real Estate Investing for Yachties, Albie and Marcia Van Zyl of Berkshire Hathaway Real Estate & Houses for Yachts
2pm Between Two Yetis, Oasis sponsors discuss FLIBS and the future of yachting
2:30-4:30pm Vitamix demo with sweet and savory drinks
3pm Maritime Cyber-Security, Sean Donnelly of Resolvn
4pm Welcome to the ONE Account, Bluewater Yachting’s crew placement and training one-price bundle