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Soaking wet's Blog

Love or hate it, Captains rule the ship

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When you work with a great Captain, that leads by example life's good. 


When you work under a mediocre Captain that works short hours and doesn't participate in daily activities life's pretty crappy.  


Captains that make themselves available, listen and freely offer helpful advice, earn the respect and loyalty of their crew. Especially when they lead with a cool head and have good people skills. 


Love your Captains style 


Leads by example and gives clear instructions and remains calm

Organizes by creating, managing and continuously improving routines 

Values and appreciates and support people's efforts

Enables and encourages  positive contributions and trust people to do their jobs. 


Hate your Captains style 


Hands off, shrugs away accountability & plays the blame game

Always barks at crew and never deals with problems

Takes no interest in the crews wellbeing

Ends conversations and instructions abruptly 


I have been calling this a job, less than others but longer than sum and feel that after 19 years at sea, 9 of which as Master on board m/y from 40m - 70m I feel can suitably qualified to respond to the above statement.

There are no doubt some Captains within the Industry who should hold a mirror and reflect upon their on actions.

However I feel that too many Captains and Managers are quickly painted to look terrible, if crew disagree with them.

I find it amazing, that in the resent search for a new crew member, how many Crew (Jnr & Senior) struggle to hold a job for at least one year on board the same vessel. Often criticizing Captain's and Owners and use them as their reason of leaving. So many CV's have I seen listing 4 separate vessels in one year.

Therefore I propose that if Crew want to talk about integrity and leadership skills, they too should hold up that mirror. So if a crew member is unable to commit to at least 1 year continual service within the last 3 years. Then I am afraid your opinion is not worth much.
Posted by: Tired at 13/03/2017 00:28

So, after reading this, I went and read your other posts from the past, what I get out of it is that you are an engineer, and you like to complain, and blame others. First you do a blog of this-"Since 2011 I've failed to file for taxes and declare an income." Then I read another blog after that and get this-"I've always paid my taxes annually or had my employer take them out automatically.Because I filed my taxes and followed the rules." I next read your blog on three strikes and you are out, bitching, next read your blog on crew just passing through, more bitching. Maybe you need to follow your own advice, last paragraph.
"Therefore I propose that if Crew want to talk about integrity and leadership skills, they too should hold up that mirror."
Posted by: CaptErik at 14/03/2017 16:47

First it should be said, Rockwall needs to redesign the blog layout so comments are easily and clearly discernible from the blog post.

That said, Capt Eric I believe you may have thought the first comment was part of the blog post. I've made the same mistake before when browsing the blog entries on Rockwall.

Commenting on the blog entry.

I have a decade and a half experience in the industry. I've seen the good, bad and ugly within.

Over the past few years I've seen this same post if you will in the forums and again here being restated in a blog post about Captain's. And I'll be honest, I don't know what brought it on in the past or now in this blog entry by the author.

It's difficult for me to distinguish what experience the author in this case, or crew members making such comments have and on what type vessel.

I've worked on large to small vessels. I know what my Captain's roll is on the vessel. And so does he or she. It would seem that those making such posts concerning Captain's don't.

My favorite type Captain? Doesn't really fall into either of the lists presented in these type posts. Which almost come off as trolling posts.

My favorite type Captain has earned the title of Captain. He knows his way around a vessel. Can manage crew and vessel wisely and keeps his head about him in a crunch. He's one that knows what I need to do, can direct me or instruct me if I don't know how to do the task at hand correctly. Can teach me. And let's me do my job without hovering over me.

He's one that expects excellence yet is tolerant of mistakes and errors.

He's one that knows when crew need a helping hand and sure enough will pitch in with physical help. But I don't expect him too. After all, he is the Captain. If needed, he'll call in extra help to lighten the work load on crew.

The physical labor is after all what crew are for. That's my job. That's what I'm employed and paid to do.

I've yet to run into a Captain that wouldn't jump in and help with physical labor if absolutely necessary.

So again, I don't know where these post come from. Two person crew including the Captain maybe? I don't know.

The Captain carries the weight of the entire ship on his or her shoulders. All goings on he or she is responsible for.

As crew I don't have that responsibility to carry. My foremost coven is not what the captain is doing per say, but rather the task I've been given. And doing it to the best of my ability.

I let the Captain do his job, and concern myself with doing my job.

Some Captain's are better than others at doing this or that. Some you might get along with better than others.

Posts like this blog entry have me asking the question, If you're so concerned about what the captain is or isn't doing. And everyone else for that matter... How the heck can you focus on what YOU are suppose to be doing?

Focus on the task at hand. Let the Captain ruin his ship the way he or she sees fit.

Don't like how the Captain runs things?Find another ship...
Yes, the answer is that simple.
Posted by: Chase at 15/03/2017 14:44

First it should be said, "Dockwalk" needs to redesign the blog layout so comments are easily and clearly discernible from the blog post.

Sorry about any type-o's in that last post. Swype has a mind of its own it seems.

Posted by: Chase at 15/03/2017 14:59

@ Chase...If you're ever looking for a job send me your CV. You have a great perspective and attitude. If you are as you express, you are on your way to a very successful career (in whatever field you choose). Kudos!!
Posted by: Capt. Michael Crosby at 04/04/2017 03:46

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