Communication skills training from N2

The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.

-George Bernard Shaw

Communication can be a misunderstood skill.

It is also one that many of us believe we are far better at than we actually are.


Whether captain, officer or crew member, communication on a yacht is vital to your whole day. Not just when on watch but also when off and perhaps interacting with crew in your own time. Communication is one of several people skills that are at the very foundation of good crew resource management  (CRM), and one we feel should be continually looked at by all crew.

There are many different ideas of the make up of communication, but we like to go with a generally understood model of about 55% of communication is body language, 38% is the tone of voice, and 7% is the actual words spoken. This a mix of two studies (Mehrabian & Wiener, 1967 and Mehrabian & Ferris, 1967).

In training we touch on one-way and two-way communication, with examples of how each is different and how different ways of communication can each become very dangerous when used in the wrong place or environment.

Using the information from profiles we work on how we can improve our communication effectiveness with others, and where we may be confusing others with our own standard ways of communicating.

Crew Communication

Listening also is a large part of communication and for many of us we really do not have a firm grasp of what real listening is. So this is also a place we work hard on in our training programs and in coaching.

In summary we feel communication is a tool for achieving technical, procedural and CRM objectives, it can serve as a vehicle for information transfer, establishing interpersonal, team, owner and guest relationships. and predictable behaviour. It is used to maintain task monitoring and situational awareness (anchoring, docking, maneuvering are a few examples), ensuring crew workload, management and leadership and is an indicator of these and other CRM aspects.

Communication and the skill level and use of it can be an enabler of good and poor performance and safety.


IMPACT OF COMMUNICATIONAs crew have to have create both work and personal relationships (communication), with each other aboard we make sure that each crew taking any of N2 training or coaching is fully aware of their own communication preferences and how this can effect outcome.

Communicate with us TODAY