Sven Tilanus, Health & Welfare Specialist

Health and well-being in the maritime sector

Ahoy to you all! 
My name is Sven Tilanus, the Health and Welfare specialist at MF Shipping Group. Well-being is not simply a superficial aspect for us; it is a deeply rooted mission, especially considering the challenging conditions faced by our seafaring crew members, day in day out. In a world where well-being is not always given the attention it deserves, MF Shipping Group has consciously employed a specialist who is dedicated to this essential theme. This of course alongside the captains and (crew) managers who also work at this subject on many fronts. 

Healthy and appreciated crew

But let’s get more personal. My name is Sven, and I’m an enthusiastic health and fitness fan, who enjoys devising creative ideas. 
My personal journey began as a teenager, surrounded by a family all driven by entrepreneurship and sport. I made an important discovery during these formative years: we have much more influence on our health and our life than we might imagine. This realisation opened my eyes to new opportunities and inspired me to make a connection between health concepts and software development.  

In turn, that path eventually led to my role at MF Shipping Group. With more than 10 years’ experience in health, fitness and software development, I am looking to deploy my expertise to improve the lives of people on board of our ships. This is more than simply a job to me; it’s my mission to ensure that our crew members are not only physically healthy, but also receive the appreciation and support they deserve. The international dynamism enriches not only my personal experience but also offers new insights which enrich me as an individual. 

Basketball on board a tanker

Why is the well-being of our crew so crucial?

In a world where the focus is often on efficiency and technology, MFSG recognises that the well-being of our crew members is the most crucial factor of all. But this is not merely about their well-being; it also directly impacts their performance and the success of our company. Without them, there would be no maritime industry, to keep the complete global economy on the move. This group does not always gain the appreciation they deserve. What truly distinguishes us is that we not only talk about well-being; we actively make efforts to achieve it. This applies both in the office and at sea, though my focus is mainly on our seafaring crew members. 

Listening, learning and enriching: our approach

My days are filled with conversations on board, where I regularly take the time to listen to the experiences of our seafaring crew. Together with our periodic happiness survey, these conversations form the building blocks of our plan. We might talk about basic requirements such as food and drink, ways of helping people be themselves or ideas on how to stay fit on board, in the gym for example. 
The conversations with the crew add an extra dimension to our approach. We discover what they truly need, and have come to understand that their needs may vary based on their nationality, age and other factors. Such valuable insight allows us to test our ideas on board a number of ships, to check whether they are effective before rolling them out on a larger scale. 
And what truly distinguishes us, is that we not only talk about well-being; we actively make efforts to achieve it. This applies both in the office and at sea, though my role and focus is mainly on our seafaring crew members. 

Happy crew on board