Yacht Crew seeking jobs today probably realize that the online job marketplace and crew agents are extremely visible and therefore, extremely competitive. Sometimes thousands of potential candidates will view a job and hundreds will apply. With competition so fierce, many job seekers may favor better in the invisible job market.
Here are some strategies for finding this invisible job market:
If you know a specific yacht or company you are interested in working with, find the crew and simply say hello some time. Yacht crew are typically very friendly and always eager to meet associates in the industry. Once you established contact don’t be shy to discuss the fact you are seeking employment specifically on their yacht, it should be received as a compliment. Be clear that you are not hunting your new friends job, you simply believe and have observed that their yacht looks well managed and the type of people you’d like to work with. Once you have gained that mutual respect perhaps your new friend shall even discuss any upcoming employment opportunities they may know of. The best way to source crew is via word of mouth – a personal recommendation from a captain to another captain has substantial weight when it comes to considering new crew.
Another great way to tap into the invisible market is through referrals from your own network of friends. Ask friends in the industry, even the waitress at the local crew hangout if they know of any job opportunities you may be suited to. Even if they dont know of anything suitable at least they shall be aware of your active desire to work.
The Old Fashioned Way
The old fashioned way is the job hunt equivalent of a cold sales call. But rather trying to call or email the captain (which could be interpreted as invasion of privacy) drop in to the yacht when the time is appropriate. To execute this first you will need to research the yacht of interest, tailor your approach and resume to fit the profile of the yacht. If it is a world cruising charter yacht, outline that you are seeking challenges that shall carry you to new destinations. If it is a small private yacht that does 3 months of cruising a year, perhaps display a desire for a seasonal contract.
Once you’re ready to drop off your resume, first identify a suitable time. If you observe guests on the aft deck being served lunch don’t try to approach the yacht as you shall be promptly rejected and unlikely receive a second chance. During a typical work day crew often wear less formal t-shirts and shorts, identify this and approach at time that the crew are not to busy. Ask to speak to the Captain or the Chief officer regarding any employment opportunities, sometimes its a case of being in the right place at the right time. If you are rejected, dont worry – politely ask if you could leave a copy of your resume for the captain to review.
There is no better way to display your enthusiasm and dedication to the industry than opffering to work for free ! Volunteer a days work assisting to clean the hull or engine room, inform the yacht you are happy to do ironing all day – just to get that foot in the door !
Be careful though that a yacht does not take advantage of your generosity, remember you want the experience and the contacts, the purpose of volunteering is to display the qualities and skills as outlined in your resume, prove them! Don’t become a slave, any more than a few days volunteering could be observed as being taken advantage of. Once your volunteer work is complete dont be shy to ask the crew if they thought your work was acceptable, then ask for a reference. Inform them of your desire to continue working in the industry and if you have done a good job they will probably help you to get a start.
If you are given the opportunity for an experience, be sure to always go above and beyond expectations, be polite efficient in the work you do. Demonstrate your eagerness to learn the procedures on the yacht and your ability to listen, absorb and follow instructions.
Throughout the entire job search process be respectful of the people, the crew, agents, owners and most importantly the yachts, you are working around somebody’s private asset and in most cases the homes of the crew working onboard. As a visitor to this domain show respect, remove your shoes, don’t touch anything, don’t ask questions about ownership, the owners wealth or any other personal topics. Be wary that the crew working onboard the yachts have a job to do – helping you find employment is the very last priority on their mind.
Have you landed a job using the invisible job market? We’d love to hear about it, share your method in the comments below.