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prima donnas need not apply

answer of the week

prima donnas need not apply

Newbie ‘Secret Weapon’ provides an excellent common sense to vtfishsailor’s prickly question of the week from Friday about suggesting needed repairs and upgrades to the owner of the boat you crew on.  The thread is worth reading for both owners and crew, and Weapon’s answer gets it right.

Come on guys — why act like you’re doing a "favor" to an owner by hopping on and crewing for a regatta?.

You are getting a free ride, w/ free food and drink for a weekend on a craft that cost tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars to purchase and tens of thousands of dollars to maintain and campaign each and every year not to mention hundreds of hours of planning, organizing and preparing taken away from families, jobs, business and community activities. While your contributions to the team’s success are highly valued and appreciated by the owner, remember you may be doing little more than trimming a sail or recommending a place to tack or jibe while he or she is contributing big bucks and lots of hours to get you out on the water.

Maybe if you are crewing for a DeVos, a Fauth, an Ellison, a Kilroy or a Zennstrom, you can act like money is no object, but most boats operate on real budgets, in households where boat expenditures compete with tuitions, family vacations, household expenses and retirement plans for priority. Thoughtful owners appreciate learned crew insights about where $$ can be spent most effectively, but can do without the smug whining of people who get to participate in an elite, expensive sport without paying a cent.

Don’t act like you’re doing the boat owner a "favor" even if you are a rock star! Crew members with good, helpful attitudes are highly valued. Whiny prima donnas are easily expendable regardless of their talent level.

Communicate your safety and performance concerns. They may be issues of which the owner is completely or largely unaware. But don’t treat your owner like he or she is not smart enough to distinguish the bow from the stern without your brilliant input.