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I’m being micromanaged…HELP!
Posted: Friday, May 28, 2010 5:51 PM
Joined: 28/05/2010
Posts: 1

I just got a new job on board a 45-meter boat in the Med, FINALLY. I’m the new second stew. When I interviewed a few weeks ago, I met with the captain and the chief stew who both seemed really great. I met the rest of the crew and really liked them all, too! But now the tune of the chief stew has changed completely. She’s very condescending when she asks me to do things and she checks up on absolutely everything I do. I’ve been working on boats for three years and feel like I have a pretty good handle on how to do my job. In fact, after I was hired she mentioned that my prior experience was what got me the job. I’m not sure what’s going on and I don’t want to leave as the job market isn’t exactly great at the moment and it’s nice to have steady pay. At the same time, I cannot handle being micromanaged or having someone be rude and cop an attitude to me all the time. I don’t want to go to the captain as I don’t want to look like a drama queen or start trouble. But what's the best way for me to bring this up to her without stirring the pot?

Posted: Saturday, May 29, 2010 4:24 PM
Joined: 07/05/2010
Posts: 1

As difficult a situation that this appears to be, you might be better off by just asking her if there is a particular way that she wants things done or if she would like to train you differently from what your years of experience has taught you.
Above all keep a smile on your face. Good luck and win.

Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2010 2:10 AM
Septic tank
Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2010 12:12 PM
Joined: 02/11/2009
Posts: 79

Micromanagers are bad managers and micromanagement is the norm in yachting. The most effective way to deal with a micromanager is to exceed their expectations and anticipate their mood. I've dealt with enough micromanagers to know that developing thick skin and ignoring the rude comments and ever changing standards is the only way to prevail. Owners don't care if crew are happy or not, they only care about themselves and the boat. Going to the captain is a waste of time, he has already seen crew change and ignored to mind games going on. The captain is only interested in making the boat run the way the owners wish and if that means high crew turn over who cares. Every boat is different, every boat has a micromanager and every boat has crew turn over. If you want to stop working for a micromanager I suggest you become chief stew. But even then the captain and owners will micromanage you so your basically screwed. Micromanagers are everywhere, on boats, in factories and in offices so get over it. My micromanager boss does not micromanage me anymore because I exceeded his expectations and am the head of my department. The yachts owner always micromanages me and it drives me nuts. I've thought of leaving, but every boat is the bloody same and why should I leave and start again. It's often better to work through the pain and take advantage of crew turn over, establish yourself on the boat and become the team leader of your department and learn how to deal with micromanager captains and yacht owners because they never go away.
Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2010 1:44 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1061

Best way to deal with micro-managers is to have them go into excruciating detail with everything. Every time they ask you to do something and start telling you in detail how they want it done, get them to give you more detail on the details, ask lots of questions. If there is anything vague about anything, ask for clarification. If they want to be micro managers, make them become pico managers over everything they tell you to do, and just do things that you see needing done on your own initiative. Eventually they'll just leave you alone to get things done.

Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2010 3:20 PM
Joined: 07/05/2008
Posts: 9

Try putting yourself in control of the situation, don't give her a chance to micro manage you, when you clean a section of the boat, ask her to come and inpsect it to see if its done to her satisfaction instead of letting her just come in on her own and find things to talk down to you about. Also if you ask to be inspected it might make this person feel better and you will be able to learn exactally what they expect from you. So in the future they wont have anything to complain about. Unfortunalty it's a game, and for some sick reason some people like degrading others to make them self feel better. Good luck, I hope it works out
Posted: Sunday, May 30, 2010 3:26 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1024

You have only been on the job for a few weeks. WHAT MAKES YOU THINK YOURE YOU BEING MICROMANAGED ? or do you have a problem with authority. Every time I get a new crew my instinct is to let them get on with the job. In order for a crew to get on with it, I must Micro manage them for many weeks until I'm confident that they know the job and can work at the level expected. This is the fastest way to bring a crew up to speed. .
Posted: Wednesday, June 2, 2010 4:09 AM
It helps to know the enemy. Go to and search under: "Micromanagement" If you are good and it is as bad as you say, quitting might be a good solution. I did and am now a much happier person. How serious can it be to look after someones toy?
Posted: Wednesday, June 2, 2010 5:12 AM
A bottle of wine and a heart to heart.....It might just be something silly, if you have an open conversation with the chief in private it can hardly be stirring the pot.....but, just be prepared for what she could say. You might not want hear what she says, or, like i said, it might be something sillly that could bring you closer together and create a great team. Just remember she is right no matter (what from a keeping your job perspective).
Posted: Thursday, June 3, 2010 6:43 AM

I think it's firstly really important to stay calm and remain that way when she has instructions and reapproaches you to 'check' your work. It is normal to check but this is not was is going on by the sounds of it. If you treat your job as a career like the 'Boys' do there is certainly a proceedure you may want to check your vessels guidelines. I would start writing down exactly what the comments refer to but keep it non emotive.I guarantee after a week you will see a pattern. You need a strategy to confront this and maybe this will allow you to see some contradictions in her comments but also you may see some validity.

Good luck and remember to wake up fresh and not worry about her approaching what you do, if you anticipate this your work will suffer. 

Posted: Sunday, June 6, 2010 7:12 AM
Joined: 01/02/2010
Posts: 1

Hi there just learn to say yes.
Posted: Monday, June 7, 2010 2:45 PM
Joined: 12/10/2009
Posts: 1

I can relate to what u are going through. learning how to communicate can b very challenging in this industry. we often forget that we are a team and the things that make up a team. Write everything down, keep a journal of your daily performance and the things that make you feel uncomfortable. When evaluation period comes around your notes become your amo. Kill them with kindness and always please before thank you. anticipate needs. often times we forget how to talk to others and we have to take a step back and know that it's not your fault you are doing a great job the person above us is trying to exceed expectations. In the future don't sell yourself short for a second stew position. Go out their and be a better chief strew. Chances are this person feels threatened by your ability to perform.
Meesa Egypt
Posted: Monday, June 7, 2010 4:07 PM

i was working at sea for many years and from my experience that i learned that its not good to feel

angry from any one onboard other wise life onboard will be very upset , my advise is to keep smile

on your face and when every body onboard in good relation with you and your chief stew is the only one

no good with you then it means she is not fair with you and every body will notice that ,

keep working hard and one day she will finish her contract and then life will be happier , but donot stress

your self in sea too much , bring her just small present or gift in her special occasion .

wish you all best

meesa egypt   ( Your suez canal yacht agent)

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