Over the past year I have worked with several Marines and Soldiers looking to transition from the military into yachting. I have written this blog to raise some awareness as to why these guys could be an excellent asset and candidate to consider for a yacht looking to hire a deckhand.
More often than not the world and knowledge of yachting isn’t readily available to ex-military when looking to secure their next long term career. Often they have completed many years in the military or have been discharged for medical reasons and are now looking for a life where they can put their skills to good use. Understandably yachting is not top of the list for them when that time comes. But it should be on the list somewhere for them. These guys have some great life experience along with excellent hands on skills that are easily transferrable to yachting. Not to mention that these candidates are used to long hours, taking orders well and have worked in seriously challenging environments (so appreciate how lucky they are to be on a yacht). They are also very fit, well presented, great team players and have great discipline and leadership skills…
What more could you want from a deckhand?
Many of these guys have many extra skills to bring to the table. Most have specialised in certain areas or sections which can include anything from landing craft coxswains to team medics to anti-piracy specialists. These types of skills are invaluable on superyachts and the day to day life onboard.
For example an ex-Marine who has boat handling skills and has specialised in driving 30m landing craft and fast RIBS for the past 4 years means they are already a step ahead with tender driving and operations. Another example could be a field medic who has served on the frontline saving the lives of injured soldiers in the field. What if the worst case scenario were to happen on deck and someone required lifesaving treatment? It’s not unlikely with the cranes, tender ops etc that accidents will happen. I am fairly sure your new deckhand who was previously a medic could take control of a situation potentially saving a crew member.
From experience I have worked alongside an ex-marine myself on a previous boat who was new to the industry and he proved to be a great team player, hard worker and all round great guy. He had security qualifications which came in useful when the owner was in the Carib and he integrated into the team quickly, was able to take instructions and always very willing to learn.
To the Captains and Chief Officers, I would urge you next time when looking to recruit a deckhand to give these guys the opportunity to prove themselves as I believe you will not be disappointed. Their interview techniques may not be as good as your typical yachtie but don’t let this put you off as in a work situation I believe they will more than prove themselves and become a valuable part of your team.
Are you ex-military and want to know more about a Superyacht career?
Or are you a Captain or Chief Officer and want to know more about these candidates?
Whatever your interest, just email Tim Clarke: