New team member at the office! - interview with Gabriella Johansson
Name: Gabriella Johansson
Position: Gabriella will replace Susanne Klip as a crew manager during her maternity leave from the 12th of March until the 1st of October. She is already employed as a guide for many years and she will start on the 15th of February working with Susanne for a smooth transition of the work.
During the absence of Susanne, Gabriella will be responsible for the recruitment of the professional crew and deckhands and also contribute to the social media channels of The Swedish Ship Götheborg.
What is your history with The Swedish Ship Götheborg?
It all began when the Götheborg was coming back from China. That day I went out with my friends and my mum to see the ship and welcome her home. Then we found out that there was a possibility to have a guided tour on board. So, we came back the other day and bought a ticket. On the backside of the ticket was written a competition. You needed to answer questions about the ship, and you could win a sailing trip on board! We decided to join the competition and we won!! But unfortunately, I couldn’t sail that summer because I was sailing on the Danish school ship George Stage for half a year and followed a training programme. So, my mum took my place and sailed along. And when she came back, she was totally crazy about it and said that I really needed to sail on her, because it was such a great experience on board.
A couple of years later in 2009, I started sailing at Götheborg as a deckhand and I loved it! When I came back, I applied to become a guide on board. During the sailing trip I already gained some experience to give guided tours on board in the ports we were visiting, so the step to become a guide was not that hard. Since that moment I am working as a guide for The Swedish Ship Götheborg and I continued sailing almost every year the ship went out on a expedition.
What is your background?
When I finished high school I studied ‘Fartygsbefäl klass VII’ and ‘Engineering klass VII’ on Chalmers. The first certificate allows you to be captain on smaller ships in inner- and near coastal waters. And because I loved the work with the events at Götheborg and I wanted to be able to work more for the ship, I also studied event management for three years.
As I told before, I started working on board as a guide in 2009. But during the summers when she went out sailing, I started to work at Göta kanal on a ship as a messman and waiter, serving food, making cocktails and taking care of the guests. After that, I started working as a guide at a maritime museum in Göteborg for some years and my last job was working as a messman for Svalbard (on the ships Freya and Origo). During all these years I also worked as a guide on Götheborg.
What is it you love the most about the ship?
When I started working here in 2009, I thought that the part I loved the most was to sail and work on the ship. That was a reason for me to start the courses on Chalmers to be able to sail more and maybe also on other ships. But then I realized that it is not only the sailing, doing a 4 to 8 watch and seeing the beautiful sunrise, but I also just love the people and the atmosphere! Coming together from different cultures, with different experiences and being a team together! I must say that I am a real people person and if I would been sailing on a ‘regular’ vessel without this kind of atmosphere I would miss that a lot. So that is what I love the most about the ship!
How would you describe yourself?
I would describe myself as a people person and I would say that I am very (maybe annoyingly) positive all the time. I sometimes even get questions about it hahahah. Besides that, I have a driven personality. I like working and I have a huge drive to get work done. In my spare time I like to read and write a lot.
Last but not least: do you have a good advice for people who are interested to sail on the Götheborg?
My advice would be to start here as a volunteer, hang out with the people and help with the maintenance of the ship. That is how I started here as well. Before I went out sailing in 2009, I joined a maintenance weekend and that was a good experience to get to know the ship before going out sailing. So that would be my best advice!