Patrick King - Case Study

The beginnings of a grand adventure.

From an unhappy outsider at school, to a successful sales manager who values friends and family, team work and giving back to society. This is Patrick King.

 

Always the adventurer, at age 14, Patrick put his age up to qualify for a 9-day voyage on the Alma Doepel.

 

It delivered more than he bargained, with a non-stop around-the-clock sailing schedule and three-hour shifts (three hours on, and three hours off), made worse by an almighty storm that raged on and on.

From an unhappy outsider at school, to a successful sales manager who values friends and family, team work and giving back to society. This is Patrick King.

 

Always the adventurer, at age 14, Patrick put his age up to qualify for a 9-day voyage on the Alma Doepel.

 

It delivered more than he bargained, with a non-stop around-the-clock sailing schedule and three-hour shifts (three hours on, and three hours off), made worse by an almighty storm that raged on and on.

 

“It was pretty extreme,” he said. “At one point during the storm I was up on the yard arm, reefing in the sails, and on another watch, I was at the bow, where giant luminescent green waves dumped on me and washed across the entire deck.”

 

Patrick didn’t know much about sailing prior to this voyage, so some of his biggest learnings revolved around how the ship worked, what to do to make it work, and why.

 

“It gave me a lot of confidence to learn these things,” he said. “This was real working knowledge and not something a 15 year old would normally know how to do.”

 

As a result of this experience, he acquired a deep love for the sea and a strong desire to pass it on.

 

For the rest of his teenage years, each weekend and on school holidays, he caught public transport from the outer suburbs of Melbourne to the Alma Doepel, to take members of the public out for a sail, together with other volunteer former voyagers.

 

“As a bunch of kids, we’d teach the public what to haul on and explain the history of the ship—what everything did, how long it had been there and who built what. During the weekends, we’d do three sails a day, but on school holidays I would spend up to a week at a time, living and working on the boat.

 

“It was an amazing social experience and the friends I made back then, are still very close.”

 

Today Patrick is a sales manager for a fencing company. He owns his own home, and together with his partner who he met through friends from the Alma Doepel, they have two children aged 12 and 15.

 

“On the Alma Doepel, I was treated very much as a person, rather than a child or student. This formative training in essential principles taught me how to relate to adults, as an equal, and has stood me in good stead ever since.”

 

He sums it up by saying. “I still refer to the basic team-work principals I learnt while standing on a swinging rope high above a wet rolling deck, relying on my friends to help reef in the sail, as an example of my ability to work in a team in job interviews. It’s the sort of life-long learning you always fall back on.”

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