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  • Is it really that bad?

    Let me start by saying none of the below is meant to offend anyone and it's certainly isn't directed at anyone here. It's just my impressions from reading lot's of different things.

    I'm starting to get a little worried by the general feedback I seem to be getting about a career in the MN. A lot of people seem less than happy with the job and conditions and I have seen a fair amount of slagging off of the career/employers etc.

    I even read the back issues on nautilus uk website and they are all full of woe as well. People getting killed, depressed, wanting to quit, piracy...the list goes on. One of their articles even had a MN careers ambassador saying he found it really hard to look young people in the eye and tell them the MN was a good career when he though it really wasn't a good choice.

    I discovered the MN as an alternative to a career flying commercial jets and there seem to be much less of a professional attitude amoung some in the MN. Drinking on the job, messing around etc etc.

    My question to current officers is is all the above really true or is it just some people venting their feeling like you get in all jobs? Do current officers enjoy their jobs?

  • #2
    Re: Is it really that bad?

    Just going to say my dads a commercial pilot and he says hates the job as do many others, the same as in any job. This is partly why I would rather work on cruise ship, more responsibility with more people to look after plus in the limelight so therefore must look professional.

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    • #3
      Re: Is it really that bad?

      Just to add... remember that complainants tend to be (much) more vocal than the happy(ier) majority.. or in most cases the less pissed off

      As a career it is no worse or better than any other, there is good there is bad, what you actually get is a profession and some qualifications and some "life experience" which apparently is the in thing to have :0

      I know many many people who are about te leave which ever company they work for (me included from tim to time) most never ever do, some do some leave the industry completely, but I dont think the attrition rate or happiness quotiant is any higher or lower than anywhere else or anyother industry.

      But hey I'm brain washed and it's too late for me
      Trust me I'm a Chief.

      Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
      Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
      No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


      Twitter:- @DeeChief

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      • #4
        Re: Is it really that bad?

        This kind of question is precisely why we set up this site

        Yeah... some people just get fed up of a job, or find it's not what they hoped it would be.
        There will be some **** operators; and some nice ones, that's as with any industry.
        I think you'll only know through exposure to working officers on ship (and maybe here ).

        My sense is that there are a lot of older (50-somethings +) who hanker after their golden age, and simply don't enjoy the modern manifestation of the MN, so they grumble - but maybe they would anywhere... there'll be others who simply don't hit it off with others or have unmet expectations (to be polite on both counts), and find themselves alienated at work and unable to make it work for them, and leave embittered. Grass is always greener if you're unhappy with something in your life; when all is well with your world, the glass is half full... "desire creates suffering" as Buddha said (and Yoda too!).

        You can earn loads as a stockmarket bod, lawyer, or accountant, have zero free time, and lose all your hair by 30 with a red face and pot belly... some love programming or experimenting for hours on end and make a mint at it, whilst for others they feel their lives slipping by in front of a computer or some other abstruse piece of kit. Many people just work in service jobs, some get buzz out of it; others feel trapped. Some relish downsizing to a rustic lifestyle of graft, whilst others feel trapped in it.

        Ultimately with all careers these days, you're unlikely to be doing the same gig for the whole of your working life, many people have more than one career.
        Some things suit you at different stages. When you're young you're focussed on sex and clubbing and excitement, as you get older you want stability and comfort and family. Other things are your own personal circumstances and preferences.
        The hidden factor is where the flow of world events and technology is going during your lifetime... this to the perceptive, can have the biggest impact on career choices.

        I would say on a cost benefit analysis thing, the MN trumps most things on the free degree and training side of things... there aren't so many things like that. Maybe Modern Apprenticeships are the next best thing, some O&G companies sponsor trainees in a similar way to the MN (but on a Clyde Marine wage). It's worth doing if you just want a degree with employability and good transferable skills, unless you have a particular thing you really yearn to train in/study about, in which case you'd be better off focussing on that.

        In most countries, the only way to get a genuinely free education is to join the military; count yourself lucky you're British and can do this instead, and benefit from the UK's arcane tax system. In the end, you can go and work in a bank, chip shop or a florists after your cadetship, and you won't have the SLC slicing your beer money off the top of your paypacket!

        I do go on, don't I [sigh]...
        Emeritus Admin & Founding Member

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        • #5
          Re: Is it really that bad?

          I love my job!! I've worked as a florist, bar staff, bar manager, sandwich maker, admin bunny, network control center operataive (12 hr shifts anwering calls about dead badgers and potholes ) and then as a deckhand on a square rigger, so I reckon I know a little about **** jobs. (OK the last one was wonderful, but still meant getting up at stupid times of the day to do sail evolutions and watches, scrubbing the deck at 6 every morning and scrubbing the heads (that's loos to you) at 0830 everyday). People who've done a job since they were wet behind the ears and fresh from school haven't done anything else and have nothing to compare their current situation. People will always reckon they've got a tough time of it and are having the piss taken out of them, but as Chiefy said, they talk the talk but never quite get around to walking the walk. There are always going to be bad times, but at the end of the day, they don't last. I for one would much rather watch the sun rise over the ocean and see a whale blowing a spout or a pod of orcas jumping while I'm working rather than sit in a grey box at the side of the M3 hearing about yet another fatal accident.... It's about perspective really! And yes, there will be a certain amount of pissing about too, when you live at work you can't be serious all the time, I don't for a moment condone those box boat lads, they shouldn't have been pissed and playing about with buttons probably but I'm guessing that if they'd ****ed anything up they'd have gotten a serious bollocking. But if you try to be professional all the time you've probably got a big stick up your bottom which ouught to be removed!!

          Size4riggerboots

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          • #6
            Re: Is it really that bad?

            Thanks for the answers.

            Quite a different picture than for example the Nautilus magazine gives. Maybe they should have a look into that as it does give a dit of a bad picture of the MN and I would assume they are trying to attract people into the job.


            To those that work deep-sea how do you get along with your crews? Something I read said this guy got so bored as nobody really spoke with him as he was the only Brit and meals were conducted more or less in silence. I can't imagine this is normal. I have lived in Germany and spent quite a while in China so am no stranger to living with none british people and quite look forward to meeting some different folks. I hope the atmospher on board is more one of a close team than a load of people who don't speak to each other.

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            • #7
              Re: Is it really that bad?

              Originally posted by Andy_S
              I would assume they are trying to attract people into the job.
              I wouldn't.

              Originally posted by Andy_S
              I have lived in Germany and spent quite a while in China
              If you can endure those places, you can endure anything!
              Emeritus Admin & Founding Member

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              • #8
                Re: Is it really that bad?

                Originally posted by scotty
                Originally posted by Andy_S
                I have lived in Germany and spent quite a while in China
                If you can endure those places, you can endure anything!
                Haha. :P I was in Hamburg which is a really nice city. I toured the docks many times. In fact I have some ship porn I should post up.

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                • #9
                  Re: Is it really that bad?

                  You're right though, there are some horror stories out there, usually from people comming into our company from others, where by as a cadet they are the only "Brit" on board and indeed nearly everything happens in a foreign language. This is next to no good for you. However I dont think it is the norm, so hard to comment on really.

                  Deep Sea is alright, the lack of beer, to be honest isnt an issue, it is what it is and you make the best of it, I cannt imagine being on a cruise ship mainly as I have never seen that many people on a ship at once

                  What I meant to add earlier (but the cider got to my fingers and they ran out of steam) is that complainants are often a self publicising, self serving bunch....just watch Watchdog, the un-happiness quotiant is relatively low, I would however state from my point of view this is as much a vocation as a plain job. It's an all encompasing way of life, what with the constant comming and going and the likes. As size4 says there are some cool sights to be seen, though if I see orca's blowing at the surface from the control room theres a chance I ought to be looking for the leak
                  Trust me I'm a Chief.

                  Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                  Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                  No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                  Twitter:- @DeeChief

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Is it really that bad?

                    Originally posted by Chiefy
                    You're right though, there are some horror stories out there, usually from people comming into our company from others, where by as a cadet they are the only "Brit" on board and indeed nearly everything happens in a foreign language. This is next to no good for you. However I dont think it is the norm, so hard to comment on really.
                    What, not the norm for the Borg?

                    I thought all Borg cadets had to do a correspondance course in Romanian, Polish, or Portuguese in order to get their NVQ book filled in?!
                    Emeritus Admin & Founding Member

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                    • #11
                      Re: Is it really that bad?

                      there are some ships that get like that, but not normally the case, depends on what personnel are feeling like when they raffle off the seat for each trip
                      Trust me I'm a Chief.

                      Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                      Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                      No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                      Twitter:- @DeeChief

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Is it really that bad?

                        Someone on here said they'd had a Borg interview where for applicants, "knowledge of Portuguese would be useful"!

                        How random is that?! Expecting a lot aren't they?!
                        ...surely they should offer more money if they want multilingual cadets!
                        I mean it's well known that there are East Europeans, Subcontinenters, and Southeast Asians a-plenty aboard, but these aren't the easiest languages (or even most accessible cultures) for the average cadet to wrap their branez around!
                        I suppose they'll be offering NVQs in Nautical Tagalog next!
                        Emeritus Admin & Founding Member

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                        • #13
                          Re: Is it really that bad?

                          Chiefy,
                          If you don't mind me asking, were you from 'Big Maersk' or are you one of the P&O/Safamarine refugees?

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                          • #14
                            Re: Is it really that bad?

                            The only piece of advice I would give is; working on ship is unique and it is truly something that you won't know if you will love or hate until you try it. Generally there is a high drop out rate initially - you can bet that a reasonable chunk of your group will not come back after their first sea phase, having decided that they hate it or its just not for them.

                            As for the horror stories... most companies now try and send at least 2 cadets to the same ship (at least for your first trip). 3 of us were sent to my first ship, 2 of us had a brilliant time and were sad to leave 6 months later, the other quit within a month.
                            ?Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn?t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.?

                            ? Mark Twain
                            myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Is it really that bad?

                              Originally posted by Malim Sahib
                              Chiefy,
                              If you don't mind me asking, were you from 'Big Maersk' or are you one of the P&O/Safamarine refugees?
                              Ermmmmm both......
                              Cadetship was with P&OCL (as was) became P&O Neddloyd....then I left and joined APM-M who promptly bought P&O Well after about 3 years of me being there, so both really!
                              Trust me I'm a Chief.

                              Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                              Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                              No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                              Twitter:- @DeeChief

                              Comment

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