Take 10: Issue 11

01 Feb 2016 The Navigator

In this issue of The Navigator, we have looked at how to build on competencies to improve knowledge and skills. Here are ten points to remember

1 Well done!

Completing years of maritime education and sea experience, attending shore-based training courses and acquiring your Certificate of Competency (CoC) are all feats in themselves. Once you have met STCW minimum standard, the next stage of your journey begins.

2 Proficiency = competency + experience

Understand that a lot of experience and further learning will be needed, in order to build on your competency.

3 Planning makes perfect

Create personal aspirations and learning goals using a competence matrix as guide. Prioritise learning critical to your tasks for the tour of duty.

4 Be positive

Always be enthusiastic; hands-on learning onboard is extremely helpful, as is reading manuals, operating procedures and CBTs. Get actively involved in all drills/training to hone your proficiency.

5 Write it down

Keeping a journal of your goals and learning activities helps you plan and reflect on your professional development. It is also useful to review your progress regularly, so you don’t forget what you’ve already learnt. The Nautical Institute’s CPD scheme is an excellent way to do this.

6 Embrace all things new

The industry is always evolving. By monitoring new developments in technology and regulations, you will prepare yourself to use them effectively and become more aware of any existing deficiencies.

7 Mentoring matters

Observe colleagues and take inspiration from those who are positive role models. Be open to learning and ask mentors/ assessors to evaluate your performance and provide feedback while you demonstrate your skills.

8 Ready resources

In addition to onboard learning materials and shore-based courses, there is a wealth of information online, including manuals, trade journals, video tutorials and, of course, books from respected publishers like The Nautical Institute.

9 Performance review

Periodically review your performance and reset your learning objectives. It may be useful to seek advice from others about what future learning goals might include.

10 Pass it on

Recognise that every navigation officer on the bridge must continually learn and gain experience. Help them do that by sharing your knowledge with those junior and senior to you. Maintain realistic expectations of other people’s levels of competency.