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Old June 9th, 2014, 05:15 PM
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Default Putting up with it all!!

If you are a Carnival fan, and follow John Heald 's blog, you know the trials and tribulations of being a Cruise Director. Being Brand
Ambassador, only adds another level of interaction, with Cruisers who want to be heard, and want compensation for all sorts of angst!


The latest insanity was a passenger who was upset about the ship using the fog horn at an early hour. I guess realizing that maybe they didn't want to hit another ship, never entered his mind! Compensation was requested for bothering the passenger..boo hoo!


On a regular basis, passengers feel the need to comment on his weight with the most outrageous comments, and no comprehension about the impropriety of their hurtful words is mind boggling!


I'm not saying, situations arise, that don't deserve some kind of compensation, but what he documents, is just robbery at sea. Have you ever come across complainers like this?


Does the CD even matter to you on your cruise? Make or break your enjoyment ? The thought of personally insulting any one of the Crew, is just wrong. Reading about his job, makes me glad I am retired!



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Old June 9th, 2014, 06:02 PM
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I also follow John, some of the stuff he posts is just CRAZY behaviour. These people need to institutionalized not on vacation. CD's don't matter to me one way or another, but I wouldn't mind sailing with John one day.
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Old June 9th, 2014, 08:01 PM
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Sometimes after reading some of the comments he gets, makes me wonder if they are really for real? Yep, I am sure they are, but what are these people thinking??
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Old June 15th, 2014, 01:21 PM
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Linda - when I worked on cruise ships I was always under the cruise director (he was my boss) and I saw them constantly working with passenger requests. It came as a large surprise to me when I started cruising as a passenger that the cruise director is not the person most people think about when they want something - they go to the hotel manager, front desk, housekeeping, Maite D', etc.

So, I do feel for John, however Carnival has started a new job position on all of its ships; "entertainment director" to plan & coordinate all the entertainment schedules, which is usually a big chunk of each cruise director's duties. So that is one good thing.

It just boggles me that his blog has turned into a site where people by the hundreds just ask for favors, like a trips to Lourdes for a hosanna. I kind of think John encouraged it a little bit by giving in to so many requests at first. But I do wonder how many actually get done. And I guarantee John does not follow up on many of them personally (he has staff).
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Old June 15th, 2014, 02:45 PM
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What bothers me, when I do read his blog, is sometimes, when someone does have a legitimate complaint, John's diehard followers go on the attack, in support of John and Carnival, ad nauseum. It's like they are not understanding that things do happen where the right to complain is justified, they just want to be a part of the gang...somtimes they can't see the forest for the trees. Oy!
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Old June 15th, 2014, 05:54 PM
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There are a great many sycophants on Heald's blog and his FB page who gleefully attack any and all negative comments, as though they are pleasing him by doing so and therefore they will stay in his good graces.

According to the reports, the new position of Entertainment Director will be senior to the CD and the CD will report to the ED. I wonder how Heald and some of the others who have been around for awhile in the CD job will handle being 'demoted' on the org chart? Will some apply to be the ED? Or there will still be a dotted line on the org chart so the CD can go straight to the Captain when they feel the need?

I think NCL was the first to create the job of Entertainment Director, but in their case the ED and CD are separate on the org chart and equal positions.
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Old June 15th, 2014, 10:33 PM
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Though I have read books by "tell all"crewmembers who say otherwise, John H seems to me to be a very compliant worker, he seems to do whatever Carnival wants him to do - including the blog, and something different all the time - different ships, hosting events, TV, whatevvvvvver ......

I think he will be relieved to have someone onboard making the decisions, but no doubt his years of experience will mean no one tells John to do anything that doesn't make sense to him. I think it will me a mutual benefit and understanding work relationship.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 08:04 AM
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I am sure the CD has more to do with my cruise than I realize but I would never book or not book a cruise based on who is serving as cruise director. I actual had my first and only brief conversation with a CD on our most recent cruise and we didn't even know who that was yet -just a nice lady helping us adjust to the layout of the ship.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 08:56 AM
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I have never or would just book a cruise based on who the CD is, although having a few really good ones does make the cruise a bit more enjoyable. It also helps when you see them in ports among the other cruisers, their presents does make a more positive impact...
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Old June 16th, 2014, 10:05 AM
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As many of you know, I started my cruise experience as a stage manager, so I was always interacting with the entertainment dept. but it was also the (glorious) part of my job to make sure mics were working for trivia, bingo, scuba tutorials, dance lessons, Etc.

Every day for me was about the entertainment scheduling. So I saw the cruise director and his minions speaking to passengers all day long; port shopping talks, introductory night, farewell night, closing out EVERY show. So the CD seemed to be a very central character for me.

As said I was surprised how small the CD roll seemed to me as a passenger later on - until I met John Heald. He was the one guy who almost everyone knew. When I saw him and met him, I understood why. He was funny as could be, but also very patient and compliant with the guests.

I don't read his blog that much anymore because (to be honest) I have already heard just about every ship complaint there is. I will say his candor and frequent use of "colorful" words has surprised me, I never expected that from anyone representing a cruise line - phrases like "doing the rumpy-pumpy with Megan Fox".

I know a LOT of people in the industry (who like to curry favor with the cruise lines, aka "sucking up") will knock John Heald to other cruise lines and say he is "an embarrassment" to Carnival. I don't agree with that, I think he is a real asset, and I especially admire the way he handled the Splendor incident.

I do think he could clean up his blog "act" a little bit, I don't personally see any gain to writing it like an adult comedy show -but I am not there when he makes his decisions, so I am not in a position to judge. Maybe it works for him.

Outside of the blog (which I don't really think he likes doing - just based on a personal hunch) I see John as one of the best and most sincere CDs out there. We ALL get cynical, and who wouldn't after 20+ years of dealing with the kind of people who write to him there.
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Old June 16th, 2014, 03:20 PM
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When I had the Breeze booked I went on Herald's facebook page and I thought it was unprofessional and tacky. Why go on social media as a cruise director and complain about the cruisers. This cruiser said that this cruiser complained about that.....

You are in the cruise industry you will be in contact with thousands of people each week and no not all of them will be your happy go lucky cruisers. There will be the crazy/mean/wacky/rude ones too.

In the business world one should know better then to talk about their customers no matter how crazy they may be.

As for a Cruise Director I think it's important to have a good one. I found the entertainment/activities to be better onboard if the CD is good and also the overall vibe of the minions (CD staff) and crew to be better.

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Old June 16th, 2014, 06:39 PM
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I had the pleasure of meeting John on the Magic, media cruise. I liked him. While I do roll my eyes at attempts at comedy, I sort of see his blog as his need to vent, due to the overwhelming overload of listening to whiners, complainers, fat haters,and the like..Gimme this, gimme that! I think before he married and had a child, he may have had a slightly different pov.

In a poignant thread, about a letter from his daughter on Fathers Day, some moron complainer insinuated her complaint into his sadness. Even with this post from his child, he could not escape someone's rath. I could be way off base, but I feel he may feel the need too change his life at sea, to have a life on land, sooner than later.
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Old June 17th, 2014, 12:08 AM
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IMO it's not right to post/talk about your customers in a bad way. Yes dealing with the public one will need to vent but can vent in a different way not in front of the public via online. One can always vent to family/friends/coworkers in private.

Not to say what some cruisers say or do is right and ok...it's not however one needs to be able to control what they say/post in public.

I just don't think it's a good idea to vent about your paying customers online no matter how bad/evil they are. A customer is a customer and they are helping to pay your salary.

In today's world if you talk negative about your employer or it's customers online that is grounds for termination. Before my current job I had to sign a form saying that I will not be on Social media posting anything negative about the company or it's customers.

I'm sure he is a nice guy I never met him.

God Bless the crew members onboard ships I don't know how they do it working onboard for such long contracts....Especially the ones with kids back home.

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Old June 17th, 2014, 05:02 PM
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I guess the cruiseline has no issues with as, as it continues on...& his fan club of adoring fans keep rebooking...
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