Extra crew can lighten the physical load of passagemaking and bring fun and light when it’s needed. But this kind of harmony doesn’t happen by accident. Colin shares his techniques for managing crew in this Online Book.
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Getting Along With Your Crew
You can have the greatest boat in the world, but if you can’t get along with your crew, your cruise will not be a success. And no one, but no one, knows more about how to manage people in demanding conditions and run a happy and safe ship than Colin.
Full of practical tips on crew management garnered from Colin’s decades of experience skippering research yachts with different crews of volunteers every week.
And then we add Molly’s tips for making family cruising work well.
Table of Contents:
Welcoming friends or family to join you on a long leg is something we all look forward to, but in order to make sure that the reality matches the expectation, it pays to plan ahead, and a briefing document can help to make sure everyone is on the same page.
Colin provides an example of the briefing document they use for new crew.
Once your crew are safely aboard it’s time to brief them on the boat and life on board—safety, watchkeeping, and domestic life. Colin discusses the pre-departure briefing they use on “Pèlerin”.
Going cruising with your partner may sound romantic, and it is. But there are also few activities that are more stressful on a relationship. Colin tells the story of his first tough passage with Lou. One that they took on intentionally to see how they would manage as a team at sea. It’s an example that all couples considering the voyaging life should emulate—Crash Test the Relationship before committing everything to a new life on the ocean.
Colin continues the tale that he started in the last chapter of his and Louise’s intentional relationship test by fire. It’s a lovely story, with a great conclusion, that should not be missed.
Good communication is a skill that, like every other skill on a cruising boat, needs to be developed and practiced. Molly shares tips for good communication on board, garnered during the last three years while living aboard and sailing 36,000 miles with her family on Sila, a Boréal 47, including an expedition to South Georgia.