Who is?

Hi. I am a shipping company director, transport academic, author, family man and all round nice guy. I have worked as shipbroker, shipowner, freight trader and bulk charterer, in senior positions, with some of the largest and most disrespected (joke) companies in the world. Ask my advice on all things shipping and you will receive my blunt and always honest answer. Hang around to learn more about chartering and ship broker salaries, chartering and ship broker jobs, chartering and shipbroker recruitment agencies, cheap freight, maritime education, chartering and ship broker qualifications, become a ship broker, tips on how to be a successful bulk shipping executive, philosophy, Zen and the art of shipbroking, and much more. Yours The Virtual Shipbroker (recently proclaimed the guru of shipbroking) Copyright © 2009-17 by Virtualshipbroker

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Fixing Machine - Tip 9

Dont be afraid to ask questions!

For anyone who has bought my books, I am free to answer any questions whatsoever regarding shipping / Shipbroking or anything else people have on their minds.

It constantly suprises me how people seem to have a fear of asking questions. The other day I was at a local sports bar watching my favourite sporting event. There was a problem though - no volume! I hate being at a bar watching sports and not having any volume. I also knew instinctively that everyone else felt the same but for some reason no-one was doing anything about it. I also knew instinctiveky that it would be upto me to ask the barman to raise the volume. So I went to the bar and asked the question. The barman looked at me totally unaware of the problem. He apologised and 10 seconds later - whala - we had volume. And guess what - the 30 people at the bar cheered as if to say 'about time'!

The moral here is this - Dont lose opportunities because you are too scared to ask obvious questions. In shipbroking this is very important. It saves time and money.

I get things done because i ask the questions other fear (not logically) to ask.



  1. VS/MK

    How did you fix your first ship? How did you look for potential charterer?
    Can you share a bit more on how did you build up your connection?


  2. mk/vs

    My first ship hey

    Well it was quite a long time coming. Bad training you see. I was 23 and working for 2 years with one of the largest shipbroking shops in the world (at the time). After 2 years I still had no real clue what i was doing. One day the rest of the office was out to lunch and we received an offer for a ship. I ran with it. The next day I had my first fixture.

    The flood gates then opened and i was off..

    So many a young shipbroker must rely on the scraps left over from other more experienced shipbrokers in the same office.

    In Inside shipbroking i talk about the need for a young broker to be proactive in those first 2 years. Its vitally important that you should have one or 2 very close clients as quickly as possible.

    I hope this helps


  3. VS/MK

    Thanks for your reply.
    i have another question in my mind.

    What is the role of a shipbroker when there is dispute between shipowner and charterer? Such as cargo quantity dispute? Any difference for v/c and t/c? Is the shipbroker liable? Is it necessary to arrange insurance?


  4. MK/VS

    Another good question. A good broker should always be looking to activirely avoid disputes that may arise between the two parties. During the entire process from fixing right through to the final payment of freight their are opportunities for disputes to arise.

    So an effective broker is one who always looks effectively manage this buy pushing either (or both) parties toward amicable resolutions.

    If a dispute looks inevitable the brokers role is merely that of advisor and giver of information. Litigation is NOT uncommon. Maritime lawyers are doing ok in the current climate!

    The shipbroker is merely a middle man (an agent) so unless the shipbroker has been negligent (or sim) in the course of his performance then NO the shipbroker is not liable. A shipbroker should always have insurance incase of negligence. (im not a lawyer but you get the drift!)

    Many shipbrokers sign of on all communications stating

    'abc shipbroking - as agents only'

    Hope this helps. Any more good questions i am happy to answer!