The annual Anglo-Eastern Seminar in Odessa is a fine tradition now. First held in 2013, it has become one of the highlights in the professional life of Anglo-Eastern seafarers and ashore staff in Ukraine.
This year, the seminar was focused on Leadership and Communication, which are seen essential in efficient and safe operation of the vessel. About 150 officers attended this important event. The list of special guests included the representatives of shipowners:
- Ronald de Pauw, Lieven van Eetvelde, Patrick Declerck, Peter de Jonghe, Aleksandar Cecur (BOCIMAR),
- Tom Foubert and Dana Wandschneider (FEDNAV),
- Richard van Renswoude (EBE),
- Paz Oref and Eli Shabtai (The National Coal Supply Corporation)
as well as representatives of Anglo-Eastern Hong Kong and Antwerp management offices, Anglo-Eastern Latvia.
The open, honest, and adequate communication, trust and mutual understanding between the vessel and the office, between the office and the shipowners were brought to the spotlight of the seminar. Every speaker was looking at these crucial issues from a different perspective.
The seminar started with the Opening Address of Mr. Harald Klein, Anglo-Eastern COO (Dry ships division). He welcomed the seminar participants and emphasized the importance of guidance and mentoring, which should be exercised by senior officers towards junior ones.
Capt. Pradeep Chawla, AE Managing Director (Group QHSE and Training) placed the emphasis on the fact that estimated 25% of the accidents result from inadequate communication. So, accident preventions asks for open and transparent communication between all parties. Capt. Chawla also urged not to underestimate the power of person’s feelings, personal circumstances, current pressures, and past experience, as these factors shape how and what they pay attention to. The report included some practical activities to demonstrate the significance of proper communication in decision-making on board.
Dr. Claire Pekcan, Safe Marine Director, HR and Management Consultants, also provided her insights into the topic of the conference. Basing on the research data, she pointed out honesty, competence, inspiration, and vision among most common characteristics expected in leaders. Speaking about sustainable performance, Dr. Pekcan accentuated trust as essential feature for the high performance culture. She also led the audience through the fundamentals of the communication process and ways to make it work. The presentation also provided the three-phase proposal for Anglo-Eastern Company: to develop insights into leadership and safety culture at Anglo-Eastern, measure baseline and capacity for change, make recommendations for leadership development, employee empowerment, and “Train the Trainer” programme.
The seminar speakers placed the focus on a number of other issues of a prominent importance.
Mr. Yash Kumar Chawla, Anglo-Eastern Antwerp Fleet Director, spoke about the challenges associated with the recent upcoming IMO regulations. Capt. Somasundar Nair, Anglo- Eastern FPD Director, shared his insights into the manning review. Capt. Gurbinder Tiwana, Senior QHSE Operations Manager, Anglo-Eastern Antwerp brought to the spotlight Australian ports incidents. Mr. Sergey Gribanov, the Head of Technical Service Management at DNV-GL, made a point of improvement of PSC statistics and typical findings during shipboard audits.
The reports were followed by the Open House, which proved to be a highly efficient tool of communication between Anglo-Eastern officers and Company’s ashore staff. The officers took keenly this excellent opportunity to discuss the issues they believed to be essential, so they were highly engaged in the discussion and mentioned the importance and efficiency of such activities in their further feedback.
The day ended up with cocktails, dinner, and beautiful show, where seminar participants had a chance to carry on their communication in less formal environment.
Anglo-Eastern Group seminars play a profound role not only in providing the seafarers with the industry updates, but also in establishing bonds between them, the Company’s office personnel, and the shipowners, thus contributing greatly to trust and more efficient communication.