Interview with Captain Lee Douglas
After taking full responsibility for the crew, keeping a solid relationship with the yacht owner and overseeing the operations and performance of the boat, we’re very fortunate to pin down a very busy Captain. Expect all things yachting from Lee Douglas, a man who’s been there, done that, and got the t-shirt.
Firstly, many thanks for your time! Can you let our readers know which MY you’re currently captain of?
The route to becoming Captain is never a straight line, which direction did you take to achieve your position today?
It was a long road and nothing happens quickly. The most difficult issue is finding the chance to prove you can do it to your superiors, and more importantly, yourself.
What was the first yacht you captained, how big was it and how many crew?
The first yacht was GU 58m Amels with 18 crew.
What would you say is the most challenging part of your role as Captain?
Mostly the crew! There is always some issue to resolve.
When recruiting a new crew member, besides the required qualifications and certifications, what do you look for in a new employee?
Do these people get on socially? To be fair, 80% of people we know in yachting would not be people that we’d normally spend our free time with outside of work. So you have to be easy going but a strong enough character to be part of a team.
As you’ve travelled all over the world, what would be your top 3 recommendations for places to dock?
Venice, Eden Island Seychelles and Bonifacio
Does being a Captain make ‘normal’ life nearly impossible?
We strive for a normal life if yachting. But when we get it, we miss the yachting side of life. “Grass is always greener.”
If you could have one super gadget to make your life easier, what would it be?
An accurate gadget to know what the owner is going to do and when.
And finally, what’s your one piece of advice to aspiring Captains?
There are many ways to getting the job done especially in an environment such as yachting. Always listen and take advice from everyone when you can and don’t forget you were once at the bottom, everyone needs a break!
Show respect and you will gain respect!
From 2006 to 2007 Tim was lucky enough to spend two years as a deckhand on MY Sai Ram and MY Leander, two excellent charter yachts. Quay Crew was formed in 2013 and is proving to be a great success: Tim covers the deck department predominantly working on Captain and Officer roles.
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