Four stripes is the top of the power chain! The stripes start at the four and change depending on their rank. The top is Captain, Chief Engineer, Hotel Manager, Staff Captain, and Staff Chief Engineer. Then it goes down from there, three stripes, two and a half stripes, two stripes, one and a half stripes to one stripe. Captain Paul Kalapodas has shipboard experience.
There is nothing more embarrassing than talking to a crew member for a few minutes only to realize after that you are talking to the Captain!
Marine Staff versus Hotel Staff
Imagine that the jobs on the ship are split in two. One side is the actual working and sailing of the ship, the marine side and the other side is the one that keeps the passengers happy, the hotel side. Everything that is important to the running of the ship is handled by the marine staff. From engine to electrical, navigation to itinerary changes, the Captain and his staff oversee this.
Now, when it comes to the rest; the entertainment, the cabin upkeep, the Cruise Staff running bingo, the dining room and all the food, this all falls under the Hotel side of the ship. However, Captain trumps all! In the end, the Captain is responsible for the security of his ship and the satisfaction of his or her passengers. So, the Hotel Staff will always defer to the Captain when it comes down to any major issue.
When you are on a ship where the staff is happy it makes all of the difference in the world. A Captain friend of ours on one of the largest cruise ships in the world once said that he told his staff they need to say hello to each other every time they pass in the halls. This taught all of them to have respect for every stripe and every position on the ship whether a one strip or four stripe. It was the friendliest and happiest ship we had ever sailed.
The Ship’s Captain and Old Time Cruising
There is nothing for us more important than trying to hold on to the traditions of classic cruising. We have noticed that the larger the ship’s get the harder it is for first-time cruisers to understand what that means. So we would like to share it here so that you can truly enjoy the beauty and elegance of cruising. Take time to get to know the staff. Whether it is the Captain, Hotel Director, Chief Engineer if you see them around the ship say hello.
In general, they are quite friendly and relish a passenger that knows their value onboard. Who knows! You may get a special invite to dine with them, or get a private tour of the bridge! Remember, you are on a ship, not in a hotel. Wardrobe! To really feel a part of classic cruising, try and show respect in the dining rooms and on Captain’s Night by upping your wardrobe. Even if that means just blinging out your nights with accessories, do it!
Capt. Paul Kalapodas is a subject mater expert, and have commanded various vessels. Please contact us for your vessel expertise requests.
Making seafaring more appealing for a diverse and quality crew
Nautilus contributed to a top-level meeting in March 2019 to develop a 'roadmap' for improving seafarer recruitment and retention practices across the global shipping industry...
In March 2019, delegates from more than 40 countries took part in a three-day International Labour Organisation (ILO) meeting in Geneva, convened to consider ways of addressing the wide range of challenges and issues that may dissuade some new entrants and cause experienced seafarers to leave the seagoing profession – including shore leave, training, sea time, criminalisation and social communications.
The meeting was presented with a report which warned of the need for action to ensure that the shipping industry heads off a potential shortage of quality seafarers – pointing out that 'recruitment of officers has reduced over recent years, particularly from "traditional" maritime countries'.
The report pointed to high drop-out rates amongst cadets during or after training and noted that officers serve an average of seven years at sea before switching to shore-based jobs.
Seafaring offers many positives, the report added, with opportunities for good pay, travel and long-term careers in the wider maritime sector.
However, it said feedback from cadets had identified negative issues such as difficulties with multicultural interaction, safety, security, workload/stress, discrimination, harassment, and loneliness.
Delegates agreed that these issues need to be tackled, and that there should be a 'creative approach' to 'attract a sufficient number of quality new entrants and retain experienced seafarers – including women seafarers and other under-represented groups'.
Captain Paul Kalapodas has been working in the commercial shipping industry and well versed with issues at sea.