Learning From Other People's Mistakes

Hey, why did I get two magazines?

Seaworthy magazine covers then and now

Way back before we invented Seaworthy magazine, people had to learn how to avoid accidents the hard way. If the galley stove caught fire and there was no extinguisher nearby, a lesson was learned. Forgot to put in the drain plug? Lesson! Didn't check the trailer bearings? Lesson! The problem with this approach is it took too long (and cost too much) to learn all the lessons. Eventually, we realized that we could reduce by a few decades the time it took to learn all of the lessons by letting people learn from Other People's Mistakes (OPMs).

In 1983 (the same year minivans were introduced), Seaworthy was born and was sent to everyone insured by BoatUS. It didn't take long before people began to appreciate Seaworthy's "teachable moments." Pretty soon, we began to receive letters (in real envelopes) thanking us for easing the learning curve. For years, as the number of BoatUS insureds grew, the number of people learning lessons from Seaworthy grew. Then, not long ago, a funny thing happened: someone said, "Why don't we send Seaworthy to all BoatUS members? That way there would be even more boaters who could learn from OPMs." The idea was quickly shot down after someone else pointed out that we'd have to print a whole lot more Seaworthys, which would mean we could no longer afford to do fun things, like heat the building. Then someone else (probably in Accounting) said, "Hey, why don't we just put Seaworthy inside BoatUS Magazine? That way we'd not only share OPMs with lots more people, but everyone would get six issues a year instead of four." Brilliant, someone in a tie said, and they gave the woman in Accounting a new calculator. Before the Seaworthy editors could complain about the extra work, the idea was approved.

Ok, you may be thinking, but you never answered the question. Why the heck did I get two magazines? Seaworthy has been around for 33 years, and we're not ones to make radical changes overnight (it took us four years to decide on a new font). So we're sending this issue along with BoatUS Magazine as a kind of heads up to let you know that the next issue will be baked right inside BoatUS Magazine. From then on, Seaworthy will be included in the pages of BoatUS Magazine, and all of our members will be able to learn from OPMs. 

— Published: August 2016

 

Seaworthy, the damage-avoidance newsletter, is brought to you by the BoatUS Marine Insurance Program. For an insurance quote, please call 1-800-283-2883 or apply online at BoatUS.com.

 

To comment on this article, please contact Seaworthy@BoatUS.com