Having what it takes: Luke on his transition from military to offshore

10 November 2022

Luke Watson, Roustabout, has transitioned from his military career to an offshore one almost a year ago – and already has concrete career plans for his future and a permanent placement within a prominent industry player.

Everyone feels the urge to generate some tangible change within their lives at some point – but not all can act on it. Luke was not an exception when it comes to feeling at a crossroads but he did the harder thing and initiated a progress of change: “I was at balance point in my life, and it was the time to choose a career with military – or something else. I think developments of the last 2 years such as COVID-19 pandemic pushed me into the direction of trying out something new. I did not really know what I wanted to do for some time until I stumbled upon the Greenhand Programme.

The change in pay was obviously a big one,” he adds with a smile. “The prospect of progression is also an important feat too. As long as you want to be promoted and ready to work towards a goal everyone is more than happy to help with your goals.” Luke also discusses how working offshore allows him to plan ahead and have a regular schedule: “With military, everything is a little bit more random but with offshore you can plan your schedule even a year ahead.

He then cites the Greenhand Programme as something that truly changed his life for the good: “I was introduced to the Greenhand Programme via social media, specifically via a link shared by an Atlas Professionals member on LinkedIn. I was always interested in the offshore industry and wanted to learn more about it but never had the opportunity as I had no friends or relatives working in the industry.

Greenhand Programme: Key to a Successful Transition

Luke cites how every profession has their own set of skills, but the ones he gathered during his time in the military made him feel right at home when it comes to the life offshore: “What I learned in the military was very transmissible. Some of the norms and structures with the offshore life are very similar to the military lifestyle as well so now that I can look back it was a relatively easy transition.

He goes on to detail why the Greenhand Programme is a significant opportunity to learn about the industry: “The Programme’s foremost advantage is getting to learn everything that matters from somebody who has done it – just getting good, hard information about what is what. I think the Greenhand Training Day was my first opportunity to network within individuals from related industries. It was an opportunity to ask questions and get some valuable information. It was just facts. I really did appreciate the honesty provided by Atlas Professionals members – just plain facts, no false promises. It never felt like I was being taken advantage of. A really good opportunity overall.

As for skills he gathered within the Programme? “As I said, military allowed me to possess some of the most demanding skills before starting the Programme but hazard awareness is something that is heavily emphasized in offshore training – you always have to keep your wits about you.” However, not everyone has military background and the Greenhand Programme, as well as the industry, welcomes everyone from all walks of life: “Being ex-military definitely helped but there are people from many backgrounds in the Programme. One of my good friends I met here in offshore used to be a banker, for example. It is good to have a variety of people on board.

Calm Waters, Clear Ambitions

Merely 1.5 years after finishing the Greenhand Programme, Luke is now working in a permanent position and has clear goals for his future in the industry – but he also had a rather exciting first day as well: “I got my first trip the day after I finished my last course, it was rather quick. I was nervous in the beginning but thanks to the skills I gathered in the Greenhand Programme and support I received from Atlas Professionals staff I knew everything was going to be fine – and it went really well. Everyone in the industry I’ve met is welcoming and share what they know.

For his future plans, Luke seems to have several avenues covered already: “I am aiming to be a Crane Operator. I am fortunate enough to have my Stage 1 and Stage 2 booked by my company. It just feels good to be able to imagine a career progression and steadily work towards my goals.

Luke also has some advice for the next generation of offshore Professionals who will join the Greenhand Programme: “Situational awareness is a must-have skill. People skills are really crucial too as you are living with a lot of people for a prolonged time. Time keeping, integrity, attention to detail. Just take pride in things you do and everything else will come around.

For more information about the Greenhand Programme and to find out how you too can become a part of it, please check out this link!

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