Finding a yacht job is like charting a course in the ocean. Here’s how to set your sails:
One dose serious self-examination – Why do you want to work in yachting? What boating experience do you have? Do you want to work interiors or exteriors? How do your past jobs contribute to the skills necessary to work in yachting? List examples of traits you have that work well in yachting. (see my Blog #1, “What does it take to work on a yacht?”)
One hefty overdose of Google -- Bury yourself in some corner with your laptop and favorite form of hydration and start Googling: yachting in Fort Lauderdale, yacht crew traits, Yacht Crew Houses in Fort Lauderdale, Yacht Crew Placement Agencies in Fort Lauderdale, Yacht Brokers in Fort Lauderdale, Charter Brokers in Fort Lauderdale. Prepare lists of each category to contact, five names each to start.
Many hours of reading the rags – Read the crew-focused professional news magazines Dockwalk and The Triton from cover to cover. Educate yourself about the advertisers as well as the articles. Both will provide great background you can use in your interviews. Plus they both post job listings.
One straightforward resume easily emailed –Head your resume with name, email/phone, skills, licenses (if any) and state you have a valid passport and no tattoos (if that’s indeed true). Know the job you want, the reasons you’re qualified to help the captain with that job, and when you can start. In a short cover letter, mention you have “no baggage” meaning no lover to convince, no pets to manage, no requirement to return home for tying up loose ends.
Several hours prep for the interviews –Practice verbalizing what job you want, what skills and experiences you offer to help the captain with that job, and when you can start. Then practice the worst questions you can be asked, and the answers to those question.
One soft duffle bag – You have to be a minimalist. Into a small, soft duffle bag, pack a few no-iron shorts, two polo shirt for interviews and a few t-shirts, one belt and a pair of boat shoes. Keep hygiene gear simple – deodorant, toothpaste and brush, sunscreen, soap/shampoo, a razor and a hairbrush. You’ll look like professional crew, especially if the duffel isn’t stuffed!
One scary one-way plane ticket - Get your bod to Fort Lauderdale, the Mecca of yachting in the U.S. If you’re going to find a boat job, this is the place with the best odds. Park yourself in one of the many “crew houses” where out-of-work crew live and start networking.
And let us know how it goes. And stay tuned for the other half of our recipe. Because there’s a yacht more to the story…Winston Hovey and Cynthia Zvanut Hovey transformed their desire to simplify their lives and be free of all their “stuff” into a mutual second career in paradise, first running a pirate bar and then as crew on megayachts. Their new book, "There's a Yacht More to Life," spans 25 years of their adventurous career makeover. For more information contact Winston and Cynthia at email@example.com
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