Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Port Lectures

I received the below from one of our major cruise line. They are expanding their Port Lecture series. They are looking for experienced speakers that can share information onboard their ships. Right now they are looking for those with Asia knowledge or the ability to research and share the information. They also will need Port Lectures for South American, North America (East Coast and Alaska), Europe, South Pacific (including Australia and New Zealand) and possibly Mexico.

Hi Cherie,
It was great speaking with you. You sound like you have a good group of people and I appreciate your offer to refer some of your more promising graduates to me. Below is a brief paragraph explaining what qualities I look for in a successful Port Lecturer and attached is the actual job definition. Thanks again for your help.

"We look for speakers who possess extensive public speaking experience, a strong stage presence and an engaging style. Presentations should be delivered in an enthusiastic and confident style, and not in a monotone voice. Scripted words should be spoken by memory -- verbatim readings of prepared texts should be avoided at all costs. We are looking for lecturers who are familiar and well-versed with their topics so that information can be shared with the audience in a conversational manner that always sounds fresh. Maintaining good eye contact is key to connecting well with one's audience.

Typical port lectures are 45 minutes long and need to include a visual slide show (in PowerPoint). All our venues come equipped with full projection screen capabilities, sound systems and lighting, and are assisted by a production technician to handle the technology. We recommend port lecturers bring their own laptops to connect with existing equipment in our venues onboard. Lectures are scheduled by the Cruise Director or their staff."

Your responsibilities as Port Enhancement Lecturer include:

A. One 45-minute lecture for each port and/or related topics. These may be videotaped and replayed on the ship's television circuit. If you haven't already done so, please send to my attention in writing for our approval a list of your planned lectures. Once we agree on your program of lectures, we'll notify the ship of your presentations. Your lectures should cover the following:

Historical Overview - A synopsis of the port's history that passengers will be able to relate with their cruise experience. This portion shouldn't take up the entire lecture, but only enough fore passengers to be aware of the historical highlights. They will get additional information from the tour bus guides as well, so information shouldn't be redundant. This is also an opportunity to provide some historical or background information on the venues we cover in our tours.

Culture & Lifestyle - Passengers should be aware of current trends and lifestyles in the ports visited. What should they expect to see and experience once they get off the ship, what to observe, etc.

Practical Information - This could include a range of topics from the weather, shopping (recommended shopping while in town), local customs (customary greetings, do's and don'ts, etc).

Shore Excursions - It is very important that the Port Enhancement Lecturer should incorporate the venues we visit on our tours in his/her talks to promote shore excursions in an indirect by effective way. For example, if they wish to see the Grand Canal, then they can take two of our tours (highlight them). This is particularly helpful in selling tours that require a high minimum to operate. This is also an opportunity to promote our new tours.

B. Port commentaries from the ship's bridge as required. These are descriptive narratives on the port, sights of interest, etc. These commentaries occur while the ship is entering or leaving a port or other areas of interest. Your commentary is transmitted over the ship's public address system on the open decks.

C. Maintain regular desk hours (as directed by the Cruise Director) for passenger questions, often located at the Shore Excursions Desk or in that vicinity. Hours will not exceed 3 per day and may be split between morning desk hours, gangway hours, and early evening (pre-dinner) hours with the Cruise Director's approval.

In exchange for your services, you will be provided with the following:

The cruise, inclusive of a Fleet or Passenger cabin (tba) and all meals.

Regardless of cabin type, Port Lecturer receives full passenger status. If Port Lecturer is staying in a Fleet Cabin, then a separate Passenger Account Charge Card must be issued for Port Lecturer's use on the ship.

A guest privilege; you will be allowed to have one guest with you in your stateroom for the duration of this agreement.

Economy round-trip transportation to and from the major airport nearest your home to the ship.

An allowance of US $X per day, not to include final disembarkation day (payable directly to you on board at the end of each cruise).

Onboard daily gratuities (cabin steward, waiter, assistant waiter) to be charged to your shipboard account and will be covered by the cruise lines at the end of each cruise. Any remaining charges will be your responsibility. Please note that any monetary amounts paid do not include day of disembarkation.

Complimentary Laundry Service.

One complimentary ShoreEx Ticket per port, for lecturer only. 20% discount for lecturer's guest for shore excursions (booked onboard only), subject to availability.

25% alcohol and specialty beverages discount for Port Lecturer and guest in restaurants and lounges.

Internet Access as required and related to the duties and responsibilities of the Port Lecturer, to be accessed through the Shore Excursion Office or Purser's Department, whichever is available.

If you are qualified and interested in the position send your resume to: tourresumes@aol.com. You will be notified by the cruise line if they can use your services onboard. Contracts are normally from one to four months. If you don't hear from them right away, don't get discouraged the spots are limited. You might also resend your resume when you have updates.