How to Become a Marina Manager

Feb 23, 2021 ·
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If you’re someone who loves being near the water, a career in marine technology might make sense for you. Potential careers could include becoming a marine mechanic, tech or boat rigger. There is also potential to work your way up to a role as a marina manager.

Marine service managers are important, as they help to oversee the operations of the entire marina and help ensure things are running smoothly. Given the nature of the job, it’s helpful to have a background in a field like marine technology.

Think you might be interested in becoming a marina manager? Keep reading to learn more about the position, job duties and the steps you can take to become one.

Marina Manager Job Description

When considering a career as a marina manager, knowing the responsibilities of the role can help you make an informed decision. Marinas serve as designated harbors that provide moorings to secure yachts and small boats. They typically offer supplies, repair services and refueling.

As a marina manager, you help ensure the successful operation of all facilities and services. You help manage team members and provide quality customer service to those who dock at your location.

Apart from overseeing operations, some of the essential daily tasks a marina manager might be responsible for include:

  • Keeping up with building and grounds maintenance
  • Complying with government regulations regarding operations
  • Maintaining relationships with agencies and vendors
  • Responding to and handling customer disputes
  • Overseeing all long-term dock leasing
  • Approving and managing an annual operating budget
  • Checking and ensuring proper maintenance of marina equipment
  • Reviewing and updating emergency procedures
  • Enforcing vessel hauling and launching procedures
  • Hiring and training employees
  • Taking reservations from boaters and maintaining records

The day-to-day duties in your role as a marina manager will vary, but your main priority would likely be to oversee and guide the service of the yard crew and team that provide moorage and refueling services.

Marina Manager Salary and Job Outlook

One of the main things you’re probably wondering about is what kind of income you have the potential to earn in a role as a marina manager.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is a great resource for information regarding outlook and salary for certain positions. While there isn’t any specific data for marina managers or general managers, there is insight that can be taken for the data provided for marine mechanics and technicians. These are roles often held by those who eventually work their way up to positions as marina managers.

According to the BLS, the median annual salary for motorboat mechanics and service technicians in the United States was $43,320 in May 2020.31 This means half of marine technicians earned more and half earned less. Keep in mind that salary depends on several factors, including experience, employer, demand and cost of living in the area.

Requirements for Becoming a Marina Manager

If becoming a marina manager is on your to-do list, it’s important to take steps now to prepare. As mentioned, having a background in the industry and familiarity with marine technology is important and will give you foundational knowledge you can build upon.

A Marine student adjusts a propeller in an MMI lab.

One option for pursuing an education in the marine industry is to attend a trade school. Marine Mechanics Institute (MMI), a division of Universal Technical Institute (UTI), has a Marine Technician Specialist training program that combines classroom instruction with hands-on experience working on watercraft.1

The courses in the Marine Technician Specialist training program provide instruction in a range of areas to help students become familiar with different parts and systems. The Service Operations course introduces different service department job functions, including how to deal with inventory, repair orders and various parts. This is useful, applicable experience to have when pursuing a career as a marina manager.

While having a background in the industry is important and great to have, keep in mind that any management position will require a good amount of real-world experience. But it can be worth putting in the time for a job you’ll be passionate about!

Prepare for a Career in the Marine Industry at MMI

Ready to build the foundational knowledge you need for a career in the marine industry? You can enroll in MMI’s program today and take steps toward your future!

You can graduate from the Marine Technician Specialist training program at MMI in less than a year prepared for an entry-level career in the industry. To find out more, request information here or call us at 1-800-834-7308.

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