Someone who runs a shipping company (a friend of mine) asked me today if I thought that he should put his young chartering people through the ICS shipbroking exams. In essense the question was - is it worth it!
So here is my kick in the pants to the industry (and my friend). Those of you who read the blog will know that I occassionally go on a rant - so hang on!
Starts with a rhetorical question.....just to add drama. Can anyone explain to me why in shipping are we so reluctant to train our people properly. How many industries, with such high salaries and supposed levels of professionalism, spend so little time and money on education and professional development? The answer is NOT MANY.
There are quite a few lawyers who read this blog. Ask a lawyer how many years of study and how much yet to be earned cash it cost them to get accepted into an industry that in the main pays LESS than shipbroking. Ask the same thing from doctors, dentists and even merchant bankers.
Yet we as a community of shipping professionals balk at a usd 3,000 professional course. Not only do we balk at the ICS course (for beginners) but the the levels of professional development training for already experienced chartering people is virtually non existant. USD 3,000 is the price of lunch (and karaoke) at many shipping function ive been too. Consider the size of the deals being done and the commissions being earned and you will see that someone is literally taking the mickey.....
Part of the problem - I agree - is that there is little in the way of creative and value based education available.
One thing I know for sure. If you are a 5 year, 10 year or 20 year chartering professional, whether that be a broker, a freight trader or a charterer and your career is on the brink YET you cannot run a voyage estimation, for example, then you only have yourself to blame....
If your career is at a crossroads, and yet you personally fail to intimatley understand your client business, then you only have yourselves to blame.
If others in your company or in your market constantly do more deals than you - yet you do not know how to properly decipher every clause in a charterparty - then you only have yourself to blame.
OR YOUR FIRM IS TO BLAME (SAME THING)
Shipbroking, and the monetary benefits and privileges it affords those lucky to be enough in the industry, is in my opinion taken for granted by many. No-one owes anyone a living, and increasingly those with better skills and better education will reap the rewards. That goes for individuals and companies alike.
And if you run a firm, that last year made millions in profit, and yet your staff are underqualified and lack important shipping knowledge - hold off on the ski trip and get them up to speed. If you dont - your competitor will!
- The Virtual Shipbroker
- 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