Spending more than 200 days at sea gave Michael Richter, Senior Cadet at Maersk, the chance to live his dream.
At first, Michael saw himself on a different path from what he really wanted to do. He was studying economics as a university student in Odense, Denmark but then felt a strong desire to explore the world. Fond of sailing and travelling, he went on to pursue a career where he can do both and learn to be a leader as well.
The opportunity came when he participated in the offshore career programme at A.P. Moller – Maersk. The programme provides the necessary technical and leadership training for aspiring seafarers which is right up Michael’s alley.
How did you end up as a cadet with Maersk?
It all started with my interest to sail and travel. Back when I was a student, it didn’t really look like I was going to follow my dreams but things changed. I eventually sought out where I can get the best education in navigation and when I was with the military, I found out that I like to lead. All of these combined brought me to Maersk.
The combination of being a leader and learning about navigation simply fascinates me. One of the biggest challenges in this field though is getting various cultures to work together and produce the best results. I always aim for the best result and I am not satisfied until I’ve tried everything. But in some cases, we also must look at alternatives and proceed with the solution most appropriate to a given situation. Opportunities at sea differ from those on land so it could really be a case-to-case basis.
Can you describe a day at work?
I normally start at six in the morning to meet with the Chief Officer at the bridge and talk about the tasks for the day. Then, I continue work on the bridge with the 3rd Officer. After lunch, I would normally do deck work, also with the 3rd officer, for about one to two hours. Otherwise, I will do specific jobs instructed by the Chief officer. If I finish early, I can still squeeze in a workout before dinner or I can just choose to enjoy the rest of the day off.
“The combination of being a leader and learning about navigation simply fascinates me. One of the biggest challenges in this field though is getting various cultures to work together and produce the best results.”