Land Divemaster jobs | Learn how
It is around lunchtime. I wake up with a massive headache. My throat is dry and my body feels as heavy as if I would have my full dive equipment on. But I am actually in bed. No dive equipment and no money in my pockets. I can find my phone and have a look at the time. I realize:
Best experience ever.
After three months, six liveaboard trips, countless pool sessions and a ton of theory I passed the last exam: The snorkel test.
But hey, what to do from now? There are lots of other divemasters out there. Looking at all the job advertising websites it seems not so many dive shops actually hire a divemaster.
Damned, I just spend a fortune on my dive equipment and the divemaster course.
I want divemaster jobs.
The beginning was tough. I had no divemaster jobs from day one as a new DM. But I learned from dive buddies and other dive professionals how to get divemaster jobs.
Today I share with you some tips that increase the chance of getting divemaster jobs.
Check out the job market
even when you don’t look for work. Always keep an eye on the most common websites that offer dive jobs.
By the time you look for work you can have saved a number of divemaster jobs from the past. This way you know which companies hire divemasters at all and you can contact those companies to ask when the next availability might come up.
Show a kick-ass attitude
The (probably) most important asset you can have. Showing an outstanding attitude can qualify you over another dive job applicant. This includes a good attitude towards
- A dive shop (Don’t show up at work late or drunk or both)
- Dive instructors
- Other divemasters
- Divemasters in training
- And everybody and everything you are in touch with
Ultimately you want to work in a highly social environment.
Develop leadership skills because you will need them with your growing responsibility at a dive shop. This includes
- Motivate others
- Be patient
- Put yourself after others
- Be a role model
- Inspire others
- Debate without becoming offending
- Let others finish what they say before you speak
- You get the idea
From my own experience, I can say a good team player does get noticed by colleagues and supervisors.
There will always be moments where your opinion diverts from somebody else’s. You can learn to debate in a fair way by asking yourself in which situations you could have reacted better in the past. Write it on a paper and look at it every day. It is likely you will remember it in your next debate.
Know the paperwork
I am sure you all have heard what PADI stands for: “Paperwork and diving in between” Still, the paperwork dive professionals use is important and can save your butt when the brown stuff hits the fan. Make sure you know the paperwork required by
- The local law
- Your dive association
- Your dive shop
There are some dive professionals who do not (want to) know about that stuff because admittedly it is not the most interesting part of your job.
But if you are the one who knows about it, you will be asked and therefore you can be important for others and the dive shop.
Know the Instructor manual backwards
There are quite a few exceptions to the standards of dive associations. It is not easy to understand all of them but still possible.
I have met many dive professionals who are happy to not touch their teaching materials anymore once they passed their final exams. This is your chance to stick out.
Knowing all the standards and their exceptions make colleagues and maybe even a boss ask you for info. This can make you an important part of a dive shop.
Tip: The instructor manual can be downloaded on your phone.
Have your own dive equipment
The rental equipment of dive shops is mostly needed for guests.
Make sure you have a set of equipment including
- Regulator including DIN/INT adapter if you need one
- Dive computer
- Weight belt
- Dive bag
- Your teaching slates
Show top level customer service
This includes your attitude of course but even a bit more. What kind of questions do guests have? Be very knowledgeable about
- Dive sites
- Fish identification especially for experienced divers
- Local culture
- Dive computer settings > customers have the bucks to buy them but no time to read the manual, download the manuals on your phone
Take the DSD leader course
As a PADI Discover Scuba Diving (DSD) Leader, you can take DSDs. There is a large number of dive shops out there who make a big part of their business with DSD customers.
If you are the divemaster in town who can take DSDs you are more likely to get the divemaster jobs.
Learn to be a sales hero
You are in the sales industry. Wait, did somebody tell you that you can live just from the love for the ocean? Well, you can. But only if you share the love for the ocean and scuba diving and if you get other people to love what you love.
Because this is the moment when other people spend money on their new passion like you did for your divemaster course. The only thing you need to figure out is how to get others spending their money for their passion with you.
Every dive shop owner will be very open ears if you let them know your developed art of selling or an amount of customers you bring with you.
Become a video and photo ninja
What do you check out on the internet? Text or images or even videos. The latter one creates the most views online throughout a range of online platforms.
Learn how to
- Take amazing photos both above and underwater
- Edit photos to make them look amazing
- Edit videos to get your videos viral on social media
- Use footage effectively on social media
- Sell photos and videos to your guests
If you can mention any of these skills in your CV you are again more interesting for a dive shop.
Become digital savvy
The world moves digital and the dive shops too. If you are good at any of these
- Creating websites
- SEO, Search Engine Optimization
- Driving traffic from Social Media to a website
- Graphic design
- General digital marketing
- Large amount of emails
- And more
you can bring quite a benefit to a dive shop. I know a lot of you became a divemaster because you don’t want to do that stuff.
But hey, if that gives you access to the first divemaster jobs why not? Later you might have more developed diving skills which get you a good job and you don’t have to do the computer stuff anymore.
Bring technical knowledge
If you have done any technical work in your life it could be good to mention that in your job application. There are quite some dive shops who need skills of an
- Boat builder
- And possibly more
I have developed a range of the skills mentioned above over time and I got fantastic divemaster jobs at the end. Also, if you want to work on a liveaboard as a divemaster the skills mentioned are very important.
The coolest thing is that all of the skills will still make you shine as a dive instructor.
I can’t stress enough to learn additional skills and qualifications – This includes languages. They are quite important in the tourism industry.
Remember, if you don’t put a good effort into learning additional skills and qualifications you will struggle for a very long time to get divemaster jobs.
Good luck landing divemaster jobs with great dive shops.
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Also published on Medium.