Many workers feel like they spend most of their on-the-clock hours swimming with the sharks, but Captain Bryce Rohrer helps people do it for real. And he earns good money for it.
Rohrer came by his love of the ocean at a young age. Raised along the coast of Connecticut, he spent his summers working on a variety of boats. Those experiences helped shape his future career path.
While taking a scuba diving class as a teenager, he saw some nearby hammerheads when he was in the water. That encounter fueled his love of sharks.
Rohrer, who is 31 years old now, hasn’t outgrown his passion for sharks since that day.
Making a Living Off Sharks
Rohrer spent some time in South Africa where he worked as a research assistant and dive guide. With a degree in anthropology, he decided to move back to the U.S. and start his own shark-diving business. He didn’t want to use cages to protect people from sharks in his business. Rohrer wanted it to be a free diving business.
But before he could open the doors of his business, he had a common dilemma most would-be entrepreneurs face. He didn’t have enough money to start his business. He couldn’t have a shark-diving business without a boat – and the boat would set him back $50,000.
But he struck out when he asked friends and family to lend him some money as his business investors.
When that fell through, he tried to get a little more creative at solving his problem. With a background in flipping boats, he located a good potential boat for flipping. It cost $30,000 and his mom agreed to lend him the money to purchase it.
He bought it, did the work and unloaded it for almost three times his investment. Rohrer was able to pay back his mom and purchase a great starter boat for his business. He first opened Cape Cod Shark Adventures in 2010 before opening Florida Shark Diving in 2012.
What He’s Learned Along the Way
Rohrer had to hit the ground running when he started his first business. His newly-acquired boat had some maintenance issues that he had to work on.
Then he had a steep learning curve he had to do on the fly. He had to learn the ins and outs of running a business and tackle acquiring insurance too.
For the next three years, he performed every role he needed to do to make his business a success. He did all the work himself – instructing his clients, driving the boat, attracting the sharks and cleaning up at the end of the day. He also did all the off-the-boat business that had to be completed for the business.
If you’re hoping to start a successful business, you have to be ready to put in some hard work. You can’t expect it to be easy. But even when Rohrer was doing all the work by himself, he was still having fun because he loved what he was doing.
These days, Rohrer has employees to help him with all the daily tasks of his business. But even with the help, Rohrer prefers to be hands-on. He still works every day for about 11 hours.
And, even now, that fascination with sharks is still something he’s passionate about. His business is doing something more than just making him money – it’s bringing people a deeper understanding of the animal he loves so much.
Share this article with your friends – maybe Bryce’s story will inspire them to swim with sharks too!