Jim Kilroy: Philosophy on professionalism

Published on December 21st, 2014

Inducted into the U.S. National Sailing Hall of Fame, Jim Kilroy’s ocean racing yachts, all name Kialoa, amassed a record of victories that remains unrivaled in the highest levels of Grand Prix racing. Equally successful in business, Kilroy’s autobiography Kialoa US-1 – Dare to Win provides the no-hold-barred, behind the scenes story of commerce and competition. Here’s an excerpt…

Aboard KIALOA, we didn’t pay our crewman. They had to be accomplished in some other walk of life, not as professional sailors. We did have many recent college graduates sail with us, who had “temporarily deferred” an ongoing career. We let them know – as we did with all our crew – that they could sail with us as long as they were making defined progress in making and fulfilling a plan for their future.

In the meantime, we welcomed their input and ideas on how to improve our performance and results. We’d try them in practice. Some were great, some didn’t work out – just like my ideas. But the very process was productive and inclusive, and in the end, the consistently good results spoke for themselves.

We’ve followed our crew’s post-KIALOA journeys and careers, which have been outstanding. Their many successes have been our rewards.

The book, Kialoa US-1 – Dare to Win, can be found HERE

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