The Bottle

Key Themes

  • Supervision skills
  • Setting the right tone
  • Delivering consistent messages

Target Audience

Offshore Supervisors and Operatives.


Based on a real event, this play tells the story Paul and Steve work on a rig under their supervisor Kevin. Kevin likes to have a laugh and joke with his colleagues, but finds it hard to maintain discipline when he sees something he is unhappy with. Kevin feels the pressure of production, and knows that he will be hauled in front of the senior managers if his team is seen to hold up work. He veers between wanting to be best mates and needing to be a leader, and finds this very difficult.


Kevin: Where’s your mate?

Steve: Dunno.

Kevin: He’s a good laugh but he doesn’t know when to keep his gob shut. Can’t you have a word with him?

Steve: About what?

Kevin: One minute he’s pratting about, the next he’s behaving like a barrack room lawyer.

Steve: What do you mean?

Kevin: Well for instance yesterday, he saw an oxyacetylene bottle lying on its side. He was filling in a SAF form and telling everyone in sight about the bottle.

Steve: Well they’re not meant to be on their side.

Kevin: I know that, but the welder was pulling it upright. He had just gone to get some more rope to tie it off and he had no intention of leaving it lying down.

Steve: To be fair to Paul he did the right thing.

Kevin: But he created a fuss instead of finding the welder and having a quiet word. He caused bad feeling.

Steve: So what are you going to do?

Kevin: You’re his mate. I thought you could sort of have a word in his ear.

Steve: And say what?

Kevin: Tell him to calm down a bit. Not to pick fights with people. Particularly me. I’m not the enemy, I’m his Supervisor, that’s all.