Along with the rest of the Florida Sea Base permanent staff, I survived yesterday’s monthly Team Meeting. Financially all is well. My budget has taken some serious hits due to complications with the new Open Oceans Adventure, but we have contingency funds to cover such events. The upgrades to the participant shower/restrooms SHOULD have been completed in February. Then we were told early May; then mid-June; and at yesterday’s meeting we were PROMISED it would be completed on 01 July. The only promise I can make is it won’t be finished on schedule. Who knows when it will be completed? It appears to me that the contractor shows up when he doesn’t have any other work. This construction has been a MAJOR participant complaint this year. The divers have to carry their gear further from the scuba area to the boats and the sailors have to use portable toilet facilities. I apologize profusely, although the persons responsible for the inconvenience don’t feel your pain as much as Capt. Rich and I. The only good news is the facilities should be very nice for future participants.:)
After the Team Meeting we had a meeting to discuss the new swimming pool that must be completed before 01 July 2013. There will be serious repercussions if this project falls behind schedule. We have the money; we have no push-back from the BSA and approval from the FSB Committee. The battle will be in obtaining permits from the Village of Islamorada. Have I ever mentioned that I frequently don’t sleep well? This is another reason.
Our weather remains stable. Northern Mexico or south Texas may experience a tropical system in 5 to 7 days but it’s not likely to devope into a hurricane. Until then, the Atlantic and Caribbean and relatively quiet.
The seasonal staff is performing well. Tim Stanfill, Food and Conference Director, is the newest member of our full-time staff. He has, unfortunately, had to send two of his employees home this summer. Sometimes people make poor decisions. As managers our options for dealing with personnel problems are limited; we can ignore the situation and hope it doesn’t happen again, we can counsel the employee and give them a second chance, or we can send them home. Many infractions fall under a zero tolerance policy. I spend about four hours the first day of staff training trying to explain behaviors that will get people fired, especially the zero tolerance issues. But sometimes it just doesn’t soak in or the staff members don’t believe us or they think they won’t get caught. Letting people go is always difficult. It puts everyone in a bind. The Divemaster Academy has greatly reduced the number of staff that I terminate each year. But even the DMA does not guarantee there won’t be issues. Some people do their best but just don’t work out.
Hopefully no one gets the boot today. Good weather, good food, good friends, good times, good music, good sailing, and great diving is the order for the day.
Capt. Steve Willis
Aboard S/V Escape