Feature

Change of Environment No Different To Kautane

Sokimi Kautane while not regretting joining the maritime industry 15 years ago is taking every stride with his head high.
25 Sep 2019 13:10
Change of Environment No Different To Kautane
Sokimi Kautane (right) with his colleagues Onisimo Votea (left) and Melaia Mamare (middle).

Sokimi Kautane while not regretting joining the maritime industry 15 years ago is taking every stride with his head high.

With his new environment of work, the Losa native from Rotuma attributes his experience in the hospitality industry, now that he has been the fleet purser for Goundar Shipping Limited (GSL) the past five years.

Mr Kautane supervises the housekeeping, catering, information desk, safety and comfort of the passengers on all GSL vessels.

It was his cousin the former Consort Shipping owned MV Spirit of Fiji Islands (SOFI) captain William Sokini who had motivated him venture into this industry.

“Most of my family members are seafarers but I was never interested in it. I was more into the hospitality field,” Mr Kautane said.

“My cousin is the one person who has played an important role in where I am today. He was a former captain William Sokini for MV SOFI; now he is in New Caledonia,” he said.

“He told me about being a seafarer. He told me that I will get to see places and most importantly meet people.

“I have worked for Bligh Water Shipping and then Goundar Shipping. I must say that this company has looked after me.

“Before I joined shipping, I was working for a hospitality company and I decided to change my career.

“It never occurred to me that one day I would be working for a shipping company.

“I went to catering school to do my certificate in hotel management.”

Despite the challenges he faced in the industry Mr Kautane  is grateful to be where he is today.

“The journey has been quite tough for me but it is very interesting. I get to see different places and it gives me the opportunity to see what people want in the shipping industry.

“One thing we must always keep in mind when working for the shipping industry is the services we provide; we must always stick to the travel schedule especially arrival and departing times.

“Safety is one of the most important things I have learned and it has changed the way I think.

“This career and change of environment have been a good opportunity for me to grow professionally and an eye opener.

Sokimi Kautane (left) with a Filipino colleague.

Sokimi Kautane (left) with a Filipino colleague.

“I work with women onboard and I believe they can succeed in this field. I have met a lot of strong women who have been with us as cadets.

“GSL treats everyone equally and that is something I really appreciate.

“Then I cannot be in the same place, time is flying and we need to make way for younger people.

“I have plans as how I will continue after my GSL days are over.

“I hope to open my own catering shop when I retire. This is in line with what I have an interest in.”

His advice to young people is to: “Believe in yourself and always work towards your goal and never give up. Always prove people wrong and never doubt yourself.”

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