12 MAY 2017 • FOGHORN FOGHORNFOCUS: HUMAN RESOURCES WheelHouse is proud to support Entertainment Cruises tracking the maintenance, safety requirements, and documentation for their fleet w w w . W h e e l H o u s e T e c h . c o m - 9 7 8 - 5 6 2 - 5 2 1 1 Marijuana Usage and Workers’ Compensation Insurance Colleen Stephens Stan Stephens Glacier & Wildlife Tours Valdez, AK We have identified a couple of issues that we come up against frequently in our operation. Managing drug-testing requirements in a marijuana legal state is one challenge because federal law doesn’t allow marijuana usage from those working on passenger vessels. We have not yet encountered a problem, however we are doing a great deal of work and warnings to employees during the interview and hiring processes. Secondly, when managing a team of marine-based and shore-based employees, we often have to spend a great deal of time educating our workers’ compensation insurance companies about the Jones Act/Passenger Vessel Services Act (PVSA) coverage versus land-based employee coverage. Generation/Gender Gaps, Insurance, and Succession Planning Robin Trinko-Russell Madeline Island Ferry Line La Pointe, WI PVA members have a lot of money invested in capital goods, vessels and shoreside facilities. However, nothing works unless the company invests in its human capital. The value of a business can be much greater than the sum of the parts. We are facing a myriad of issues here at our operation, that are also indus- try-wide. I’ve spoken to other vessel operators about some of these concerns, including the one that seems to impact most operators: recruiting and retaining younger captains and deckhands to replace older ones who are transition- ing out the industry. It’s imperative that, as employers, we understand the motivational factors that drive different generations and strive to find a balance that works well for all (employees and employers). In my experience, younger workers need to feel appreciated and be comfortable with their standing in the company. Once that happens, they feel like they’re part of a family, which is a good thing. Along with the generation gap, we’re still seeing a gender gap. I think our industry needs more women in the business, including in the pilothouse. We should strive to employ more women, and then encourage them to move up the ladder. Employees/team members who receive positive feedback take pride in their work and status in well-respected organizations. Those employees/team members who get helpful feedback are more likely to continue with the orga- nization. Respectful communication is key, delivered through a variety of channels: written, verbal, group and one-on-one. Another important issue facing our industry is keeping up with all that surrounds healthcare insurance and our ability to offer a package that helps existing employees, attracts new ones, and works for the company financial- ly. I believe that if done right, health insurance is a retention tool for keeping good employees. Finally, looking forward, if owners/ operators don’t have a succession plan or people who can fill your shoes, there’s a lesser chance you will be able to sell or wind down and pass on the business. n It’s imperative that, as employers, we understand the motivational factors that drive different generations and strive to find a balance that works well for all (employees and employers).