There is little doubt that he large majority of crew jobs goes through word of mouth – far more than most will ever imagine!! For this reason, it is really important for you to start building a good network within the industry already from Day 1.
The more people, who knows you are looking for work, the larger are your chances of finding work. It is often seen that a yacht already employing a dayworker or two needs more dayworkers the following day. In such a case the captain will nearly always ask the dayworkers if they know of anyone else, who may be available. That’s where you get in the picture, but only if you have an established network. Here are a few of ideas of how to do that;
First off, establish a good reputation for yourself as being friendly and helpful – and be sociable.
- When you do yachting courses meet up for a drink or two after training is over and connect with everyone attending the course on Facebook.
- If you do your STCW and other entry-level training keep in touch with your fellow students.
- Stay in a crew house instead of private accommodation.
- If you stay in a crew house be sociable with everyone.
- It is no secret that sailors like a drink or three. Neither is it a secret that the easiest way to meet yacht crew is either when dayworking or in the bars.
- When you daywork, be friendly and sociable with everyone on board– without interfering with their work. You may run into them in the bar one of the coming days or perhaps in years from now on a different yacht!
- Try not to miss out on any yachting events such as boat shows, crew events, webinars or crew dinners. These events will normally be announced ahead of time in the Yacht Crew Facebook groups, among others.
- When you meet people in the industry, share your business card and within reason ask them if you may add that person on Facebook.
- Use Facebook to build your network. Set up an account purely for yachting and add other yachties and industry professionals. Be active with posting photos etc., which gives them something to comment on. Make sure, they can tag you in job posts.
- In the Facebook groups Fort Lauderdale Yacht Crew, Fort Lauderdale Yachties and Newport Yacht Crew (if you will be heading to New England) ask if anyone might be interested to meet up. You could ask if there is anyone from your country in town or if there is anyone interested in participating in an activity that you both share (rent a car together and go exploring for the weekend, go for a run, go to the beach, go on a hike, go to the movies, go for a drink, go to watch rugby or Champions League in a bar, go out for a pizza etc.). Use Facebook to your advantage.
After work many crew venture out for a few drinks just to get off the boat for a little while. Yachties tend to frequent the same bars, no matter where in the world, they are located. Unfortunately, some legendary bars and restaurants have shut down in South Florida over the years, often due to developers moving in. Fortunately, others have opened since then and will continue to do so. Some of the more popular crew bars in South Florida are;
- Waxy’s Irish Pub *
- Tap 42
- The Village Well *
- Flanagan’s Quarterdeck *
- Southport Raw Bar
- Marina 84 *
- Monty’s (Miami Beach Marina)
* Good for sports – Waxy’s and Marina 84 will usually show international Rugby and Soccer. Call ahead to hear if your game is on – or check their Facebook pages. Most bars will show the usual American sports such as baseball, basketball, football, hockey and golf.
You can also meet yacht crew in nearly any other local marina bar as well as along Lauderdale Beach.
Be social, open-minded and have fun! Just keep in mind that potential future employers or crew agents may also be frequenting those same bars. It may be easier said than done; behave…
Long story short, making a good name for yourself and being proactive in your quest to build a larger network will pay off, eventually. The more people you know, the larger are the chances that work will come to you. Good luck to you!!