John was 22 years old and a new deckhand aboard a 60m yacht. He had been onboard for three weeks now.
John had taken his RYA power boat 2 not
that long ago where he had to wear a lifejacket and kill cord (as did the instructor), yet here he was in a much faster boat, not wearing either and he was beginning to feel this yacht was not as safe as he had hoped it would be.
Just yesterday he had to wash the transom on the yacht without a lifejacket or harness (or anyone watching), and had to hang off railings and balance on a small ledge.
In fact the thought of offering his wisdom or insight, or expressing his views so they might be taken into account as decisions were made, seemed like a wish and dream!
John wanted to say something at this moment, he wanted to put a lifejacket on, wanted to shout to the bosun "can we stop so you can put the kill cord on and we can both put lifejackets on!"
But he had the feeling he would be scorned at if he did.
When crew are not engaged they may foot drag, procrastinate, make poor decisions, skip or ignore safety procedures, and likely not put their all into what they are doing.
This was a fictitious story, BUT the points mentioned have all come from real interviews with real yacht crew and first hand observations. While this may not happen on all yachts, it does happen and outlines what can happen when a whole crew or even one are not engaged.
The report revealed (amongst other things), that only one in three employees were found to be engaged.
- It can be measured
- It varies from poor to great
- It can be nurtured and dramatically increased
- It can be lost and thrown away
- Have a clear understanding of how they and their team are to fulfill its purpose, objectives and goals
- Know how they might change to fulfill these better
- Know they have a voice in this journey to offer ideas, express views
- Know these will be taken into account as decisions are made
Why does it matter?
Thereport showed that 64% of the people surveyed said they had more ability and skills to offer than they were currently being asked to demonstrate at work. They were not engaged.
Engaged crew care about the future of their organisation (yacht), and put in greater effort to help it meet its objectives.
HOW DOES IT LOOK?
- Strategic narrative
- Engaging managers
- Coaching employees
- Real listening
- Sense of integrity
Considering it's the owners that ultimately foot any extra cost of high turnover. The owners that will have to face any resulting problems and costs of accidents and/or crew issues, and the owners and guests that ultimately get the short stick if crew are not engaged. We feel crew engagement is something that every owner, captain and management company might want to investigate.
Of course the dark horse is that time is always an issue in yachting. There never seems to be enough of it, and there are plenty of crew looking to fill any vacant positions. So while looking into whether your crew are engaged, and what level they are, time can be the enemy.
Stay Ahead of the competition.
If as a management company you want to produce world class levels of innovation, productivity and performance to set themselves above the rest and gain new clients, or a captain that wants to insure his/her place as captain aboard. Creating crew engagement makes for an interesting and affordable case to get ahead and stay ahead of the competition. Yes time will always be an issue but if you want to give the best then there is always a price. Perhaps the questions should be. How much are crew that are not engaged costing?
We would love to hear how you engage your crew? Where your level of crew engagement is, and how do you review and keep...
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