Partly driven by the pandemic, the business employment landscape is transforming rapidly requiring a new way of thinking with respect to diversity and inclusion, as well as sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility, in a way that cannot leave shipping unaffected. Amid a vigorous global employment environment, how can the next generation “flourish” and perform at the highest potential in an industry inadaptable to cultural change?
“I think it is very difficult to make teenager to believe in these, but I think it is more better to invest when the teenagers are still children. Children like to become doctors, astronauts, football players, but you never hear someone wanting to become a chief engineer.” said Capt. Sokratis Tigkos, Crew & Marine Manager, Omicron Ship Management Inc.
We have to invest, to explain that shipping is not being a doctor, it is not saving lives, but it is being at the center of the world
Capt. Tigkos added.
What do you think are the key skills to move forward with confidence in a changing environment?
Changes in the working environment driven by shift in retirement models and length of life expectancy, makes lifecycle of each job minimized in time, which means most of us have to learn new skills in our working life: No matter what we study, we have to learn, unlearn and relearn new skills, even if working in the same industry. How does this affect shipping?
We need to learn during our lifetime and always be curious…jobs in maritime industry become more and more complex, meaning they require more and more teamwork, strong leadership skills, to solve complex problems, have a different diversity of ideas…I think these are the skills we should invest. Technical skills are of course a must, but its just a start; its not the end of the road
…said Dr. Luiza Shahbazyan, Founder, The Pivot Company.
“If you want to be involved in shipping, the only trait you must have is pure curiosity and love for what you do…you never stop learning; this is the magic of shipping. This is why shipping is not for everyone. It is for those who love to learn, to develop themselves, who are hardworking, who have a high sense of integrity. Even if you have all the skills, technical or soft, if you don’t have integrity, you cannot move forward,
…pointed out Mrs. Vasso Kaperoni, Crew Manager, Stealth Maritime Corporation.
“It is a challenging industry, so you must have the curiosity to learn and adapt yourself because every day you have face to face different cases and persons, so you need empathy to realize what is going on and take the lead to manage these cases. The important is to love the field. If you do, you will find the way to succeed,
…added Mrs. Aggeliki Saranti, Crewing Recruitment Officer, Euronav.
How are we changing as an industry with respect to ESG?
ESG is big now and its is going to be enormous in the future. ESG is probably the latest iteration with respect to CSR. The reality is that shipping responds to demand and the market right now is addressing more and more the ESG. So, shipowners, whether they like it or not, will be forced
…noted Capt. John Dolan, Deputy Director/Loss Prevention, Standard Club.
“It seems that ESG is the key trend to the market. The key is balance to be sustainable. At first, we might be resistant to changes but we need to adapt. Environmental protection is very significant for every authority and organization, so we need to keep up with this,
…added Ms. Christina Tsimpouklidi, Claims Assistant, American Club.
Where do we stand as an industry with respect to diversity, equity and inclusion?
While shipping as an industry maybe be adaptive to change when it comes to cost effective technologies, this is not the case for cultural changes and way of thinking, panelists pointed out. Age, disability, race, gender, sexual orientation, all should be factors when appointing people, but not one of these should be basis for discrimination, argued Capt. Dolan, because an efficient ship requires everyone onboard to be part of the team and feel valued and comfortable.
Diversity is not only about women; it has to do with age, race, sexual orientation and many other things…It is important to be open-minded and attract people who are able to contribute to a shipping organization, and thus, a shipping company be able to enjoy all the benefits that this brings about. If you have people with different culture and point of views, then of course the decisions will be better
…argued Mrs. Kaperoni.
“I have experienced the wide variety of cultures. Not one nationality has ‘the market expertise’. There are really nice people out there, all helpful, all productive, all ambitious, all competent. And that’s the industry I really admire. And that’s a big part of the reason why I’m still in the business. It’s a fantastic environment,
…explained Capt. Dolan.
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