President of the FFVoile's central arbitration commission since 2008 and elected to the federation's board of directors in 2009, Jean-Luc Denéchau, a 55-year-old entrepreneur, is a candidate for the institution's presidency. He is supported by the outgoing President Jean-Pierre Champion and will face Nicolas Hénard in the elections of 25 March 2017. He answers Boatindustry's questions about his project, especially for professionals. You can find the remaining trade on Bateaux.com.
In your project, you talk about setting up a professional career path for club employees. What does this mean?
Our structures and clubs are similar to very small businesses. For their employees, it can be difficult to project themselves elsewhere. It is therefore important to offer them visibility on their career path and to carry out a global work to federate these professionals at the national level, and avoid any form of demotivation as the career progresses.
This obviously requires a training offer, not only technical, related to sailing, but also in management, reception or product development. It is also necessary to open up to related sectors such as tourism and the nautical industries. These employees, in their new activities, will bring their know-how and knowledge of sailing, which will benefit our sport, even outside the FFVoile.
By remaining within the clubs, it is also necessary to motivate and open up employees' horizons, thanks to the sharing of actions between structures, or by proposing missions in the leagues.
What relationship do you intend to have with the French boating industry?
The FFVoile already maintains informal relations with the French nautical industry. I would like to reflect with her and with the universities on a formal framework for our exchanges. We must create a development line with industry for innovation and with higher education for research.
We have to give and receive from the economic world. We need more bridges. The presence of FFV Sailing abroad, in Olympism for example, could benefit industrialists, while their market studies on sailors would benefit the federation.
You want the FFVoile to assume its role as an economic player. What do you mean by that?
Indeed, the FFVoile must assert its position as an economic player. In other words, we must integrate the principle of lucrativity, knowing what we are selling and what we are doing free of charge. This applies to the Federation and to clubs. When the FFVoile works for a racing organisation or when a club serves as a rental point, it is a commercial activity for profit. It is an important source of funding.
Speaking of financing, how do you position yourself on the current licensing debate?
This licensing debate comes at a crucial time. Today, they represent one third of the resources, the rest being made up of equal grants and partnerships. I would like to launch a collaborative platform with the clubs to discuss without taboos and explain why you want to join. This will be the basis for defining a new licensing system and proposing it to the next GA. Today, clubs do not have a direct financial return on licenses, so this should be considered.
Finally, you will be elected by the electoral system . Some people want to change it, what do you think?
It seems difficult to me to talk about an electoral system at election time. You are never completely satisfied with a voting system. I am open to a new way of working, but I certainly do not want to imitate the political model. The important thing is to protect the unity and good understanding between the practitioners and remember that we are above all a federation of clubs.