Making a move to land can sometimes feel daunting for yacht crew, but there’s a unique opportunity to further your career as a private estate candidate.
And I should know, because I’ve gone through it myself! After three years in yachting, working my way up to Senior Service Stewardess, I decided it was time for me to move back to a land-based position. Having worked in London before yachting, I loved being at sea but I missed the security of being nearer home while also wanting to utilise the unique skills I learned onboard. So, I revamped my CV, got on the phone and soon became a House Manager and Family Assistant.
Recognising the transferrable skills you learnt at sea
What many people forget when considering a move away from yachting, is how many great skills we pick up in the industry. To name just a few:
- An ability to offer seven-star service. Whether it be in the form of a top-notch cocktail or the best massage a guest has ever had – these are all skills that can come with you onto land.
- Being comfortable in catering to the needs of ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs).
- Ability to deal with multiple demands, acute stress and long working hours in a high-pressure environment.
- To be able to find solutions and adapt to last-minute changes.
- Quickly identifying guests’ needs and requests before the thought has even formed.
- Being resilient and tolerant – eating, living, and socialising with the same people every day is a skillset in itself.
While all of the above will stand you in good stead for many land-based roles, they’ll definitely make you a very attractive private estate candidate, evidencing that you are used to working within the luxury sector and to the highest standards.
Tailoring your CV for land-based roles
One of my biggest recommendations when re-writing your CV for land-based opportunities is to focus on how the soft skills gained onboard can benefit shoreside employers.
Regardless of the experience needed, you should be able to demonstrate how your soft skills can benefit a business or operation in plain English. By this, I mean removing any yachting jargon and really drilling down into the responsibilities of your crew role.
Remove all mentions of day-heads, lazarette, aft-deck and crew mess, for example, and explain what being a Purser, ETO or Bosun entailed, for example.
For a Purser, you should highlight your accounting and logistics knowledge, guest concierge and relationship management, travel management and administration experience.
As a Bosun, you may have effectively managed a team, liaised directly with guests and delivered hands-on maintenance and a stringent attention to detail when it comes to caring for and handling equipment.
From that first moment when you typed up your junior yachting CV, we are told to structure our CVs in a very specific way, with age, photos, whether we smoke, have tattoos or if you have an STCW, ENG1 or B1/B2 all included at the very top.
Whilst some of these things will be of use for a land-based role for a private estate, particularly ones that require international travel and need to know any visas or passports you hold, most of the elements are not actually essential.
Personally, when I went land-based I chose to keep my picture to make me feel familiar to the reader but that said, all of the yachting rules could theoretically be thrown out the window.
I would recommend focusing on the layout and keep things short and sweet. Start with a summary paragraph that outlines what type of role you are looking for and what experience and transferrable skills make you a perfect private estate candidate.
If you are applying for a Chief of Staff role within a high-profile private residence, you no longer need to go into great detail about your daywork from 15 years ago. It is better to focus on your more recent, relevant experience.
By all means, include a brief sentence or bullet points to explain all time periods in your CV, but the employer would rather know about your managerial, and senior experience for these sorts of roles.
The devil is in the detail
The CVs that really stand out for me are the ones where time and consideration have been put into the presentation and there are NO ERRORS. There are so many great (and free!) online tools that you can use to create a top-notch land-based CV – and of course, we all have spell-check.
Try using Canva for the design and Grammarly for spell-checking. I’ve even seen candidates add QR codes to their CVs recently to send the reader straight to a digital portfolio of their floristry skills! Taking the time and investing in your CV will pay off enormously in the long run.
Finally, if you’re just tipping your toes in the water of land-based or private estate roles but are still looking for yachting roles as well, there is no harm in having two separate CVs. Creating and maintaining both will mean you are ready and able to apply for roles as soon as they arise and allow us to push you forward in the best way possible.
If you want guidance on how to create a great land-based CV for your experience or to chat through your career options as a private estate candidate, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a call.