Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You

Why I Won't Hire YouSo, you’ve decided to hang up the uniform after years of distinguished service to our great nation. You’ve attended a few transition classes and have your interview suit and shiny new resume as you make the leap into the civilian world.

You feel confident, because you’ve seen your colleagues leave the uniform on Friday and come to work the following Monday in a suit and tie making twice as much salary. You storm the job boards and job fairs. Never mind that although you’ve drafted a plan of action and milestones (POA&M) for every significant evolution of your military career, some of you have invested the least amount of time and effort into your own transition POA&M.

Those of us in the hiring and recruiting business know firsthand that not all veterans are created equal, and, sometimes, it’s a great business decision to hire a military professional into our companies. Often, though, many don’t. Why? Because you’re just not the right fit. A more impressive candidate captured our attention, or maybe, through no fault of your own, we found someone internally or received a referral from one of our own employees.

The irony is that many veterans and servicemembers have the skills and experience to make the cut, or even get the second interview, but blow it. As a military candidate recruiter, I see consistent themes in why military professionals don’t get the job. Many may blame the new Transition GPS, their branch of service’s career center or even the employers themselves, but here are the top real reasons why you’ll never get hired:

 

1. You Can’t (or Won’t) Accept That You’re Starting Over

Let’s suppose that immediately after graduating from college or high school, I went to work for one of the well-known defense contractors. During the course of my 20+ year career at that company, I was very successful and promoted to the position of Program Manager, frequently working with the military. However, I’m now at that point in my career where there isn’t any opportunity for further advancement, or I’m simply weary of the industry.

I’m now in my late 30s or early 40s and decide it’s time to leave the company to pursue a different career. I’ve worked with the military my entire adult life, so I decide I want to join its ranks. Because of my previous experience with managing multimillion dollar budgets and hundreds of personnel, I feel I’m the equivalent of a Commanding Officer or Senior Enlisted Leader. When I talk to a recruiter about my level of entry, what would they tell me?

The cold dose of reality is that despite all of my experience, I’d have no idea what the organizational culture is like in the military. I’d be set up for failure if someone allowed me to don the collar devices and step into a command position. On day one, something as basic as sending an email to a flag officer could go very sour very quickly. This is because even though I may have transferable skill sets, I lack the knowledge of industry norms and protocol experience to succeed.

A senior military professional transitioning into the private sector faces the same dynamic. The transition is a bit easier within the Department of Defense and Federal arenas, but you’re starting anew. It’s imperative that you understand this. As a result, you should seek ways to learn the organizational structures of potential employers many months before you’ll be entering the job market.

Just as I would have been far better informed had I spoken to a military recruiter before I left my civilian job, so should you be similarly informed before entering your last year of service. Use recruiters, headhunters, employment counselors, hiring managers, etc. to gain intelligence and information so you can be pragmatic in your expectations and planning. Also, getting a mentor who has successfully navigated into the private or government sector and is also a veteran will provide invaluable insight from a perspective you’ll be able to relate to.

 

2. You Believe You’re Unique (Just Like Every Other Transitioning Person That Day)

Each and every day, 200 to 300 servicemembers exit the military. This number will only increase as the nation’s wars come to an end and forces continue to draw down. In 2012, an average of 470,000 resumes were posted on Monster each week. Essentially, for every job opening in the U.S., there are roughly 187 qualified and unqualified job applicants.

This is the challenge you face in relying on job boards as your sole method of getting a job. I suggest you think of hitting the “apply” button as being similar to walking down to the local convenience store and buying a lottery ticket, then deciding to not do anything else (or continue buying lottery tickets) until they call your number.

Are job boards still relevant? Yes. However, it’s best to post your resume to a niche job board that aligns with your background or industry — and make sure your resume is targeted specifically for the jobs you apply to.

 

3. Your Resume Is Longer Than the CEO of Our Company’s (or Shorter Than a Recent College Graduate’s)

A long resume doesn’t impress me at all. Even worse, a resume that has neither definition nor clarity is guaranteed to be placed in the trash. I’m probably going to look at it for six seconds, tops.

Your resume should be a windshield document. That is, it should reflect the positions you’re going towards. (Click here to tweet this thought.) It shouldn’t be a rearview mirror which simply lists all of the duties you performed. It should contain keywords, which websites such as wordle and tagcrowd can help you identify in both job announcements and your resume. This is because your resume will most likely be filtered by Applicant Tracking Software before it even gets to a human resources screener.

And, while I appreciate that you volunteered to clean up a highway or had some collateral duties in addition to your main assignments, I’m looking for candidates who have years of matching relevant experience, the right job titles and are in the same industry. Most importantly, I’m not looking for a “jack of all trades”; if I were, the job posting would have said so.

How do you craft a resume that’s forward-looking? Find about 15 to 20 job announcements that match up with your ideal target job title. Incorporate their language into your resume and make it contextual by inserting your metrics. Review each bullet point you’ve chosen to use by asking yourself if it demonstrates a problem you solved or action you took and the results that were accomplished. The actual length of your resume? It depends on your audience. Seek out current or former employees at the companies you’ve identified in your target list and ask them what their company’s preference is.

 

4. You Didn’t Proofread Your Resume

I would be a millionaire if I got 10 bucks for every time I come across a candidate who’s an “experienced manger.” There isn’t any substitute for attention to detail here. Don’t trust spellcheck, and don’t rely solely on your own review. Have your resume reviewed and critiqued free of charge by as many eyes as possible. The trained professionals at your Fleet and Family Support Centers, Army ACAP, and Airman & Family Readiness Centers are the best resource to catch those mistakes before I do.

After getting your resume reviewed for spelling and substance, take it to the local university’s English department and have it critiqued for proper grammar. Seem a bit excessive? Well, if I see misspellings and poor grammar on your resume, what will I expect from you if I need you to communicate with my clients?

 

5. You Don’t Have a LinkedIn Profile (Or, Even Worse, It’s Not Complete)

In a 2012 JobVite survey, 89% of hiring decision-makers and recruiters reported using social media sites such as LinkedIn to find their candidates. If this is the case, shouldn’t you have a profile already?

Your knowledge of managing your online presence lets me know how proficient you are in using technology to communicate. It also allows me to see your skills, even if they’re nascent. If you have an incomplete profile, it may communicate that you might also expect me to complete your work for you.

Take the time and get your LinkedIn profile set up right. There are lots of places and resources available online to get help at no cost, so there isn’t any excuse for not having one. Additionally, a complete LinkedIn profile allows you to take advantage of LinkedIn Labs’ Resume Builder to automatically generate 11 different resume styles based on your LinkedIn profile. Talk about a time saver!

 

6. You Think Social Media Is For Kids or Sharing War Stories

If you think social media is a huge waste of time and doesn’t offer real value, watch this video.

The reality is that two out of three job seekers will get their next job using social media. What does that mean to you? It translates to lesser-qualified people using technology to their advantage to get hired. They know how to use each of the social networking sites to the maximum extent in their transition action plans. If you think Twitter is of little use to a job seeker or professional, your competition will be happy to land the job you want because they’re using it and you aren’t.

 

7. You Didn’t Prepare For The Interview

During the course of your military career, you’ve conducted countless boards and interviews. It seems to make sense that you should have no problem interviewing. After all, you did pretty well in your transition class mock interviews, didn’t you?

Wrong approach. I’ve seen instances where the most junior servicemember outperformed a much more seasoned military leader because of one simple strategy: practice, practice, practice. Practice with someone who regularly hires or who has hired people at your level recently.

Why do you need to practice? Because you need to be able to be conversational, convey energy and yet let me know you’re aware of what my business is, who my competitors are and even who I am. Did you go to the company’s website to see if we have a Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter page? Did we make the news recently? Google News is a great way to find this out.

I want you to distinguish yourself from the regular job seeker. I want to know you’re as passionate about my company and what we do as I am, not just out to get a paycheck and benefits. Make sure you have a set of questions that I haven’t heard before, and when we’re about to finish the interview, ask for the job. Don’t worry; I’m not going to be offended, because I want to see that fire in your belly. Just don’t overdo it by saying something presumptuous such as, “So… when do I start?”

 

8. You Wrote a Thank You Note (But Only to Say Thank You)

Sending a thank you note is something that sets you apart from the competitors also vying for this position. And while it’s appreciated and infinitely better than sending nothing at all, don’t just send the note to say thank you; use it to tell me how much passion you have for my company and the job. Remind me of those things that excited you during our interview and, if there were any areas you looked vulnerable in, ease my concerns.

 

9. You Don’t Know What You Want to Do

When asked what you want to do, the worst possible answer you can give is, “I don’t know” or “anything.” You have to be able say specifically what types of positions you’re interested in and how you can add value to them. If you don’t, you’re essentially saying, “Invest lots of time and money in me, and maybe it will help me figure out if I want to do something else.”

If you have no clue where to start, start by looking at colleagues with backgrounds similar to yours who have recently transitioned. Which industries are they in? What companies are they working for? Where are they living? What job titles do they have now? The LinkedIn Labs Veterans App is a great tool to help with this. Be sure to check it out. Start volunteering to gain professional experience and seek out internships long before you sign your DD214.

Employers want to feel secure in knowing that you’ll last and that they can depend on you in your new work environment. Doing an internship or volunteering will help both the employer and you determine if a position is a good fit. Additionally, due to the flood of resumes that come in for each job posting, applicants who have volunteered or performed internships will stand out well ahead of the others.

Military professionals, especially senior ones, have a lot to offer our country when they hang up the uniform. The President and American companies are working hard to ensure that servicemembers and veterans have well-paying jobs with opportunities to advance. However, no one is ever guaranteed a job, and the more senior you are, the more challenging the transition can be in terms of education, credentials, certification and relevant industry experience required. Having a powerful network is essential and can open doors for you. That said, your comrades, friends and family can generally get you to the door, but it remains up to you to be fully prepared when the door is opened.

Eager to hear your thoughts — please share them in the comments!

Image: Flickr

Related Videos

 

Tags: , ,

Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You

254 Responses

  1. Sultan,

    Another great article, your advice and positions are always so accurate, thanks for helping us veterans.

    at #
  2. Great article with a lot of great truths behind it. There are some grammatical errors throughout. Most ironically, one in number four “You Didn’t Proofread Your Resume” really caught my eye.

    My LinkedIn profile is one of those incomplete profiles you mentioned and I have other things to clean up as well, though my main focus right now is education. Thank you for the insight!

  3. Sultan, this is good stuff. Thanks for putting it together.

  4. This article is brilliant; some of the best advice I have seen yet.

    Several areas hit right at home with myself as I near the end of my career in the Marine Corps. Often I think senior leadership that transition out have an attitude of “why wouldn’t you hire me?”; there is a great deal of arrogance behind leading Marines in combat. It is hard to transition and understand that you are starting over and if you did not properly prepare for this then it can be a traumatic transition. I have watched base SgtMaj’s transition and start working handing out identification cards mainly in part because of the “do you know who I am” attitude.

    I am an infantry guy with 21 years in the Marine Corps; I looked at what I did well in the Marine Corps and tried to target my focus in this area. For myself, this was getting a degree in Human Resource Management as I was a successful recruiter and station commander; equal opportunity advisor, substance abuse counselor and most recently the Operations Chief for the Inspecting Generals Office. I know that my time in combat is appreciated and the long hours I spent in the infantry is impressive however end result is the “pull trigger make gun go bang” mentality that hold infantrymen back. I have tried to work toward making myself marketable in my transition; to be honest I am probably more freighted moving into the civilian sector than I would be if I made a return trip to Iraq or Afghanistan.

    My concern is making several of the mistakes you have highlighted here. I must continue to reminding myself to be humble, downplay my accomplishments in the military while highlighting my strengths moving into the civilian sector.

    This article was simply amazing , and I am printing it off to hang directly in front of my computer.

    at #
    • I just want to say I was married to a former Marine of 21 years that had to deal with this issue, and the only advice I could give that he learned in the end was……… yes be humble, but still go in hard and then tone it down. If you are in a manager’s spot…. If you have to BS through a lot, do it.. He did but he was so convincing everyone believed him, but back most of it up at least a little. Marines are good at improvising . Please do it. Semper Fi Marine.

      at #
      • As a retired Army Officer AND a former hiring Manager, do NOT BS you way through an interview!!!
        If I realize it during the interview, I will end the interview; if I hire you and find out you BS’d me, I will can you with the full support of my leadership and corporate HR!

        at #
  5. So you will spend an average of six seconds on a resume – yet go through the motions to research whether or not a candidate has a complete LinkedIn profile. That is ridiculous! You fail to mention/realize that some military career fields do not afford the individual an option to post his/her entire history on the internet.

    I believe this article may help some of the Veterans – and for that, thank you. Personally, based on your verbiage, you are more interested in an ego stroking exercise. After 20+ years in the military, that does not interest me one bit. Unique skill sets do make a unique candidate. If all parties were equal, it would not matter which candidate was chosen…

    at #
    • Dp,

      Six seconds is an average, which can be drawn down by seeing a lot of resumes and tossing them aside in one second. Quality resume’s may get looked at longer. If a hiring manager/recruiter is looking at your LinkedIn profile I would think that’s because the candidate has stirred enough interest that the organization is looking further.

      From my fairly extensive research and experience, this author pretty much nailed it on the head. This is ego stroking. Those who want jobs after the military must embrace the reality of the situation.

    • Dp,

      I agree that the attitude seems unfair, but from the standpoint of a veteran who served 11.2 years in the Air Force I was able to play the game and land a new career within 4 months after separation by following many of the tactics outlined in this article. Persistence is the key, but a little inside knowledge doesn’t hurt either.

      Shawniya

      at #
    • Dp – great point. Many of those serving in the military would be HIGHLY remiss to post a LinkedIn profile with their entire work history. For those who do not wish their personal information to be made public via Google search (which I guarantee will show numerous links to web domains you never signed up for, such as the dreaded Yatedo profile search engine) – DO NOT fill out an accurate LinkedIn account. Try usajobs.gov and/or send your resume directly to personal connections for distribution to interested organizations.

      at #
    • DP,
      I agree. This article doesn’t apply to all career fields, especially the ones for which there is no civilian equivalent. I also don’t agree with the 6 seconds on a resume compared to the time perusing LinkedIn or Facebook (which we all know future employers do)! Bottom line, you can’t stereotype or cookie-cut everyone’s career. Each person’s professional experiences are unique and can benefit future companies in various ways. The title of your column is offensive and a slap in the face to AD military, veterans, and retirees; especially when we are looking at a reduction in force, and COLA reductions. Instead, your title should read “You are former military? Thanks for the endless sacrifice and service! Here is why I want to hire you, versus some self entitled schlep with no discipline or work ethic”

      at #
  6. Sultan, you have great advice and and good tips to follow. That being said, you mentioned proofreading your resume but in your “social media” advice, the very first sentence had grammar issues. How are we suppose to follow you advice if you don’t practice them yourself? I got a job before I even got out because I know how to network, and my resume was professionally done (by myself). I took a resume writing class, and I recomend it to anyone who has not done a resume yet. I covered everything this article talked about.

    at #
    • My last sentence was off. It should have said “It covered everything this artcle talked about.”

      at #
  7. Great comments & discussion from everyone! As a Veteran, former Military Professional and now someone who sources military talent (& trains corporate Executives), my goal is to provide to truest sense of the labor market to our transitioning servicemembers. I’ll take the hit on the grammatical errors :-). Seasons Greetings and keep the comments agree or disagree coming!

    • Sultan I have spent my career in the corporate world…would be happy to mentor a service person or answer any questions. Let me know if I can help. I am a software sales person and work with the enterprise space. My twitter is PHMaven.

      at #
  8. Yep. Another take on the old resume….too short, too long, too targeted. fact is, no one knows what is needed because the people interviewing have no idea what they should be looking at. Every 6 months, it goes the other way with the resume and how to prepare it and how log or short it should be. Otherwise, nice prep stuff.

    at #
  9. Excellent article! Nothing beats a big dose of reality. The civilian world today is different from than the one I left 20 years ago. Most vets retiring today have been insulated from seeing the transformation. When I joined, having a college degree almost guaranteed you a job. Today, not having one guarantees that you won’t get the job. Your article gives so much useful information that it should be required reading at every vets first transition appointment. I see the flaws in my own transition plan and now can take the steps to fill in the holes. Thank you.

    at #
    • Paul,

      I am pretty sure it was not your intent, but there are no guarantees including what you can and/or can’t get with/without a degree. You do have to add value to a future employer though. As a recent retiree I replaced my income without a degree, certification, or license with civilian translation. Except my driver’s license.

      I just had to be well presented in other areas.

      My point is this to those transitioning. You don’t have to do everything. Be average at everything is a bad plan, but being exceptional at a few things (preferably several) can make up for a lot.

      I would say interviews and resume are the closest to being mandatory, but even those can be displaced through networking and social media efforts.

      at #
  10. Some of you seem to be very critical… It’s unfortunate if the main thing you were able to get from this article was talking about stroking someone’s ego and grammatical errors. This article was for the novice and for those seeking a realistic view of expectations when transitioning to the civilian sector. If I seem to be defensive, it is because I am. Look at your own replies, several of you had errors. Thank goodness to those who can see the comprehensive content of this article vice condescending comments. Sultan Camp, “You Rock” and your information was well taken. Thank-you for caring enough to publish this article! God bless and have a Happy New Year!

    at #
  11. Sultan,
    Great article, full of good insight and food for thought. I am on my way to check out LinkedIn Labs; thats something I haven’t looked into!

    at #
  12. Cite your sources. I see a lot of claimed statements with no reference to validate. For example, you claim that — “The reality is that two out of three job seekers will get their next job using social media.”

    I see a few issues with this statement and claim. On one hand, you provide no reference as to where the “two out of three” stat came from. On the other hand, in section 5, you basically stated that if the candidate does not have a LinkedIn profile, he/she is not getting “your” job. (Although I am rather confident that as a headhunter, you do not own a single job in reference – but that is a completely different topic).

    In all honesty, I was turned off by your very first paragraph. You stated, “…and have your interview suits and shiny new resumes.” Please explain to me what a shiny new resume is.

    Additionally, in a following paragraph you noted, “The irony is that many veterans and servicemembers have the skills and experience to make the cut, or even get the second interview, but blow it.” If you called me back for a second interview, I would politefully request you move on to the next candidate. If it takes you two interviews to figure out what you want, that tells me you lack decision making skills and this is not the company for me.

    Which brings me to my final reference point and issue with this article. You stated, “Your knowledge of managing your online presence lets me know how proficient you are in using technology to communicate.” Again, if this is how you select candidates, you are essentially eliminating fully capable and powerful candidates. In actuality, the lack of an online presence may actually prove that our proficiency in using technology far exceeds yours.

    For all future candidates out there. PLEASE DO NOT RELY ON LINKEDIN TO BUILD YOUR RESUME.

    at #
    • Uh. When I went through selection for a unit I worked for I went through an “interview” every day for 63 days. Usually involving PT and a rucksack. My company I work for now conducts multiple interviews before hiring dudes. And we’re all former DOD guys. Stop pontificating on how the world should be and adapt to what it is.

      at #
      • A selection and assessment isn’t an iterview! Endurance it’s to weed out the ones they want to interview with the board. And you get one chance and allowed to continue or told to go home. I see where your brain was though.

        at #
    • Most top jobs require at least two, and sometimes as many as four interviews. One with HR, then another by the department head, then a third by a group of top managers. You seem to be ignorant of even the most basic facts of how life in the civilian sector really is. If “the article was exhausting” for you, this is just the first of bad experiences you’re going to have.
      You should stay in uniform until they force you out kicking and screaming. Then, try for something at the post office. No need for a good LinkedIn profile there, and hopefully it’s just one interview.

      at #
  13. I was expecting a completely different article slant. Great job! I retired after 33 years in the Army and I am still persuing the next phase of what I want. Fortunately I think I already know much of what you posted here, but thank you for letting me know how important it is!

    at #
  14. I generally hate commenting on the internet but I think in this case it is a limited enough group of people that it will actually be worthwhile. In short, 88% of your list of observations (Numbers 2-9) apply equally to all job seekers and applicants alike. As a result, they don’t address specifically the issue of transitioning military members. I don’t want to assume but I would guess that #1 is fairly unique to military member, as it should be, so I will address it specifically.

    The reality is that the situation you present, of a civilian falling into a military leadership position, is actually quite prevalent. In fact if you go to nearly any base, the base commander will likely have as a senior adviser a civilian who has been in the area for a long time and may be a retired service member, though often not. In policy positions (like with undersecretaries) you will also notice that they have staffs comprised of policy wonks. To drive the point home, service secretaries have been largely picked from private industry leadership (SAIC CEO to name one recent appointment) with little complaint.

    Beyond that you make a faulty assumption that this assimilation and flexibility could not work. In fact the idea of bringing senior private sector leaders into leadership positions in the military is advocated in the recent book “Bleeding Talent” one that I agree with and advocate strongly. Many of us advance the idea that the services would do better to have more lateral transfers of talented people from the private sector into leadership positions in the military.

    In total, your most specific argument (per the title) is unconvincing and largely naiive to the realities of the services and the future of the military. The rest of your tips are fine suggestions for anyone looking for a job but have little specific relevancy to transitioning military members.

    at #
  15. My daughter is FIFTEEN and I’m going to make her read this article! Awesome advice for anyone going into the work force. Thank you for your service, and for hiring veterans!

    at #
  16. Great article Sultan,

    Although some may be critical based upon their unique situations, or perhaps their expectations of how the world “should be” rather than “actually is”. One way to judge useful advice is if it applies to 90% of the people, 90% of the time, and I think this article absolutely does that.

    Bob

  17. Sultan! This is terrific advice and glad that you continue to work tirelessly to support veterans and transitioning military. I’m working on building a strategy for my future as a singer/entertainer after my time with the Gov’t is over….and if all goes as planned it will be on or about my 62nd birthday in 2015. Happy New Year!!!

  18. Enjoyed the article and the points it made. Points to ponder as we strive for that manger position 🙂

    at #
  19. Great information! In #4 you talked about going to extreme measures to proof read our resume or you would trash it if you found a mistake. Unfortunately, I didn’t read past the first sentence of #6, because I trashed it.

    at #
  20. #10 You’re in the Reserves and we don’t want to deal with you going to drill monthly or being away for annual training or a deployment but this is illegal to say so I will tell you “Thanks but no thanks.”

    #11 Your resume mentions combat and you assume the veteran has PTSD or other mental issues and you are afraid they will be a ticking time bomb.

    at #
    • Catherine ,
      As a hiring manager, I find your comments disturbing and cynical at best. and you should consider the source of your predisposition. If you are a hiring manager anywhere, submit for retraining on hiring practices ASAP. A service member does not have to reveal #10 during he interview process, and it is illegal to ask questions of a medical nature. Your line of thinking suggest that you perceive a bias against military candidates, when for the most part, that is a huge advantage to anyone sitting for an interview in front of myself and most others.

      To the points of the article – Work on the interview piece the most, your first impression is the strongest factor in whether or not you get the job. When there are two equal candidates, the one with the best personality gets the job.

      If you are a veteran – thanks for your service.

      at #
      • I am a veteran and this is based off of my own experience as well as the experience of vets I know. The stigma against Iraq and Afghanistan vets is real and is a reason why the vet population under the age of 30 has a higher percentage of unemployment than their civilian counterparts.

        If you don’t like those try this one
        #12 You’re overqualified. You are willing to start over but we, the company, won’t hire you because we feel you will jump ship at the first opportunity.
        #13 You moved every two years and our computer system flags you. The biggest hurdle to getting hired isn’t getting past the interview it is just getting past the computer system. Try being in a military speciality that required moving every few years and now imagine trying to fill out a traditional job application or trying to fill out a resumes. You won’t make it past HR screening because you will appear to be non-committal.

        at #
  21. Sultan –
    I wasn’t sure what to expect when I began reading your article, but I found that you made some excellent points and provided a refreshing change of perspective to what I often read from the “experts”. In my work with transitioning veterans at “True North” I’ve always been a strong believer that the best approach to finding a job is exploring avenues to approach a hiring manager directly (via professional and trade organizations, volunteer work, internships, etc.), though the techniques of getting that done often rely heavily on an effective use of social media.
    There have been some comments made to your article that nit pick your grammar and references (which would have further strengthened your article), but they apparently ignored the basic messages. You offered some truly helpful advice and I was particularly impressed with the points you made about the “I could do anything/I don’t know what I want to do” mentality.
    If more people read the article for what it has to offer, their job searches would be better focused and yield faster results. Keep it up!

    Murray at #
  22. I was at an interview that I was over qualified and the interviewer didn’t think I’d be happy with the position I applied for and would come after his job within a few months. Three months later he was fired and my resume was still on file so I got hired in the position I wanted-3rd shift shipping manager. After 2 months I had updated ther inventory and shipping procedures and moved to first shift as shipping manger/training manger andthen let go a month later. I was told it was because I didn’t fit well with the company( I was with that company for ten years before I went active duty). I found out later from friends that I had made in other deptments was that my boss( warehouse inventory manager) let me go because he was afraid that I was after his job.

    at #
  23. I got a job right away after leaving the Air Force. I was an electrician in the af and am one now out here in the “tough” civilian world. It’s easy, tell an employer your faults or areas you know need improvement, then tell him/her what you can do to better their company, essentially what you can bring to the table. Then act on it and work your ass off. Be better than that other guy they just hired or someone that’s been there for years. Have a good work ethic, and learn to take critisicm. Be someone they can rely on, just like you were in the military. Shoe you want to do these things for an employer, and coupled with a well written resume, you’ll be a shoe in.

    at #
  24. Good article with solid advice. But “Well, if I see misspellings and poor grammar on your resume, what will my expectations be when I need to you to communicate with my clients?” contains an extra “to”. Someone should have proofread his paragraph on proofreading.

    at #
  25. My Father was career army. He transitioned to a civilian job as a contractor to the military. My brother was career army. He transitioned to civilian jobs also. I spent 8 years in the reserves, but basically have lived in the civilian world. I am now in a position of hiring people. As such, let me add my 2 cents. Some skills are easily transferable from military to civilian life (computer technician, mechanical, electricians, etc.) Other skills, while still transferable, are more difficult to articulate. (not a lot of call for an infantry commander in the civilian world.)

    In these cases it is the responsibility of the applicant to make the “soft skills” applicible to the civilian job market. Most hiring people do not know the responsbilities of a company commander or a 1SGT. The skills must be described in terms that will catch the eye of the hiring agent. As mentioned in the article, I get hundreds of resumes each time i post an opening. Most of those resumes get just a few seconds or a minute. I am scanning the resume for certain key words depending on the position that is open. from those hundred plus resumes, i will narrow down to maybe 10 that i will look at closer. If your resume does not catch my eye (or catches it for the wrong reason like spelling or grammer errors) you never get a second look. If you do make it past that first review, now I MAY look at social media or other things to distinguish you from the other applicants before I choose 3 to 5 of the applicants to come in for interviews. We generally do 2 rounds of interviews but, again based on the position and travel required for the applicant, we may do one over the phone, or we may have three rounds.

    I know you probably have very competent assistance in doing these things, but remember, you may be completely qualified, but so are many others. You must use any method you can to stand out from the others that will be applying for the same job. You may be the most qualified, hardest working, most articulate candidate, but if you cannot express that in writing, no one will ever know.

    Now because of my family history in the military, I consider military experience an advantage when looking at applicants. I think that of the people I have hired for my department over the years, approximately 60% have had some military experience. I will also say that I cannot remember ever posting a job where a former military person has not applied, and usually multiple former military, And I am just hiring for my department in a small midwest manufacturing company.

    Remember you have to do whatever it takes to standout in the crowd. If you do not feel comfortable using social media, then do not use it. Just know that it may limit your opportunities.

    at #
  26. Sultan:

    A good article that no doubt helps. Written generically for both the Vet and everyone else. A bit overoptimistic in its assumptions. Most potential employers will tell you that they can train you but are looking for someone who is a good fit. This is true but disingenuous, because experience does really count and in spite of our vast military experiences, many veterans have what it takes to beat out by someone already in the company applying for the same position but still will not rise to the top- company insiders have the advantage. Many public sector or sales jobs are much more lenient to Vets. Many private sector employers appear somewhat intimated by Vets. There are also many subliminal factors that can work for you but mostly against you when you enter the interview and before you even have a chance to site down. Assuming that you’ve done 20 years, then age will definitely be a factor. When you perform company/factory tours and meet with people who are currently working “there” it at once becomes obvious that those people are not super-humans and that if put in the same interview chair- most would probably fail. So then why does the interview process treat people as if they were either aliens from Mars or morons (i.e., What is your favorite color? If you were an animal, what kind of animal would you be? and other such silly questions…. Yes- we all realize the psychological basis behind some of these questions- but is it really the correct underlying assumption to apply questions based upon Clinical Psychology- which are based upon “negative factors”-i.e. diagnosing disorders, than to uncovering each individuals explosive strengths?) when you and I very well know that the same people interviewing you would fail the same tests? Also, what nobody talks about is that unlike the Olympics, when you are interviewing for a job, there are no Silver and Bronze Medals awarded….so the brutal fact (not indicated in the article) is how do you eliminate the other candidates such that you are the only won remaining standing? Yes, it may be Machiavellian….but it is the bottom line truth.

    at #
  27. I know that I have ZERO personal experience with this but I read the article because I believe it’s a shame that we don’t value veterans more in business. I think that while the author definitely has good points surrounding what anyone looking for a job or looking for a job in a new field should consider, when it comes to the relationship between private-sector employers and the military unfortunately my fear is that all of this comes down to one, albeit completely unfair, stereotype. ” Military folks are inflexible, rigid and need to follow firm rules.” While most of the private sector is now operating in environments of day-to-day fluidity, agile project management methods and placing an individual’ls ability to get a job done in their own interpretation without rules, questions or much direction… in high regard. I think if the military could help market veterans as fluid, flexible, personable, decision-makers and help the private sector correlate that Captains (for example) easily have Director or executive level experience managing teams and meeting deadlines… veterans would have more success getting equivalent responsibility and higher-paying jobs in the private-sector.

    at #
  28. This was very needed and very good.
    Thank you.

    at #
  29. This is good. There are some that I agree with 100% and others that I think are changing so rapidly that they aren’t even worth a mention. I should clarify. There are some that still apply to retirees, but not to separatees. I say this because retirees who are at 20 years of service (or greater) are still from a pre-social media, pre-LinkedIn, pre-highly-technical-civilian-job era. Those who have done 10 years or less and have sat through the revamped transition assistance program should be ready to hit the ground running.

    That being said, transitioning out is complex and a list like this never hurts.

    at #
  30. One other bit of advise I would throw out there is to take a copy of your resume with you at all times, because you never know when it might come in handy. As part of my retirement physical and for the VA rating process, I had to have a cardiac ultrasound done. When I arrived, the technologist asked if I had ever had one done before, to which I let her know that I actually did these while in the military (granted, not all occupations within the military will be this specific). During the exam, we talked about experiences, differences in our two schools, and what we were seeing on the screen. Little did I know, but this was a mini-interview on the spot; she ended the exam by asking if I had a copy of my resume that she could pass on to her immediate supervisor. I had one (thanks to my wife for telling me to take one) and I received a phone call within about 1 week. After lots of unsuccessful interviews and offers online for a litany of manager positions for just about every company (courtesy of Monster and Career Builder), a serendipitous event like this landed me a job.

    I wish you all the best of luck in your transitions and will say that this article is by far the best advise I have ever read on this subject. Please take heed to all these brilliant points!

    at #
  31. Great recommendations Sultan. I especially agree with #3, it is essential to make sure that the resume is between 1-3 pages. Also, the resume should be formatted nicely and should be easily readable.

    Bharani at #
  32. Can’t understand why an ‘incomplete’ LinkedIN account is necessary; I’ve had better luck with no LinkedIN account.

    It really seems to me that the ‘greater’ your web presence – and the MORE you have to say – the LESS likely you are to be hired.

    Hiring managers don’t want to be responsible for ANYONE who could turn out to be a liability.

    at #
  33. Sultan,

    This is by far the best article that pertains to military transition. I firmly believe that the transition classes the military provides, it just a snapshot of the reality you outlined and what a veteran will experience when he/she departs from the military. I’m a prime example of spending my adult life in hte military and will soon have to make the decision to seek employment or work on creating my own path. Great job providing and sharing these insights.

  34. Sultan,
    Great read and awesome advice. I agree completely! Its a tough pill to swallow that you are starting over, but your parable of a CEO joining the military as teh CO is perfect! It isn’t going to happen and we need to realize that and be prepared to start over.

    I made the initial transition but stayed within aerospace and defense, but now am trying to make the transition to a new industry and alot of this article fits to a tee. Thanks for the great advice.

    Greg

    at #
  35. I think, that this is a good memo to give to very young job seekers. The people that are interviewing you are possibly 40-55. This group didn’t grow up with social media. They will be interviewing for talent and attitude, not your conformance to LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.
    IF your interviewer is a senior person, remember that they got where they are through skill and political savvy. Watch out for trick questions.
    Read your resume over and over. Does tit say what you really want to convey. Use a different cover letter for every interview. Point out the person skills the military gave you.
    Happy New Year,
    Steve Guinn (USAF, Vietnam)

    at #
  36. Sultan, your article has received much attention! I am a Senior Corporate Recruiter for an award winning company, plus I’ve done 20 years military service myself. You and I have discussed these points before and although you have some that agree and some that disagree, this topic needs to be drilled home in Transition GPS.

    The reality of transition into the civilian workforce won’t set in for many until they truly put their military careers behind them. Great Job on the article!

    Kevin Spain
    Senior Corporate Recruiter
    US Navy Retired

    at #
  37. Sending to our transition assistance manager. With your approval, we may post in the next newsletter or at least post a link. Let me know if that is acceptable.

  38. Sultan,

    Much of what you wrote, while enlightening and helpful, is not veteran-specific. That’s okay, though, because it doesn’t really have to be veteran-specific as long as it encompasses and is relevant to veteran applicants. The tough love is appreciated.

    Here are my top three things that you probably already know but they bear repeating here for our fellow vets, and these things are some tough love for you:

    1. The worst day at your company — the biggest problem, screw-up, danger, or disaster — will never compare with what I have already seen and done multiple times. While your CIV employees, managers and the vaunted CEO are running in circles screaming and shouting, the veterans will be fixing things if they we allowed to do so. You don’t need a jack ‘o trades? Tell us that again when the server goes down and your underpaid IT guy calls in stoned and you have a half-dozen military IT specialists onboard that were hired to do something else.

    “If that’s the worst thing that happens here, we’ll all be in pretty good shape.” Remember that?

    2. As veterans we have not necessarily chosen to become civilians; instead, we may be part of a force reduction protocol resulting from current adminstration policies. Our last job comprised meaningful work. We saw the results of our work daily, good, bad, and ugly. We did good things with bad results because the good things were more important than the bad results. We did bad things that resulted in ultimate good. We may need the job, but you should be realistic about our enthusiasm for it — particularly if we are to be a mere cog in a giant machine. We don’t mean much to your company, and your company doesn’t mean much to us. Loyalty is a two-way street.

    3. You wrote, “…your resume will most likely be filtered by Applicant Tracking Software before it even gets to a human resources screener.” Sultan, in one sentence you have explained the burgeoning mediocrity trend in our country. If you don’t care enough to read my resume personally or have someone else do it, then what makes you think we care about your company or the job beyond the next paycheck?

    V/R
    Sr.

    at #
  39. Great Article. This lady needs to go over this article again and again with a fine tooth comb and make all the necessary changes to her resume, other pertinent documents and profiles plus make changes so that her attitude remains positive in the interim so that a job will materialize in 2014. Happy New Year 2014 and Thanks Tremendously for Sharing…

    at #
  40. Sultan,
    Thanks for emphasizing LinkedIn. My LinkedIn network was extremely important in my job search after retiring from the Navy in 2013. While I was building my LinkedIn profile, I looked at hundreds of others and have my top 3 pieces of advice that I always pass on to job seekers:
    1. NO SELFIES. Go to the mall and spend $20 for a professional head shot in business attire!
    2. I don’t care if you’re a transitioning Navy Captain, when I see that you didn’t bother to capitalize your name, I’m not interested in anything else in your profile.
    3. EVERY DAY, find an article on the internet from the last 24 hours that is related to your area of expertise. Post it to LinkedIn and include an intelligent comment. It will drastically increase the number of profile views you get.

    V/r,
    Josh Kellogg, CISSP
    USN (Ret)

    at #
  41. Great post!

    at #
  42. Very good article with great advice. It may be difficult starting over, but we all have to do it. More and more people are changing their career fields and paths several times during their lifetime. Thank you for sharing your insight.

    at #
  43. Hence why someone starts out looking for jobs and beginning the transition 6 months out from separation. Took my resume classes, went shopping for suits, wrote my resumes multiple times, started college classes, found recruiting companies that setup clients for interviews with big companies and secured a job 1.5 months before separation. Never once thought I was special, knew that starting over was a part of life, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.

    at #
  44. Great advice given, I have worked as a hiring manager for the past 20 years my first stop is your Linkedin profile. II have been impressed by candidates who before to the interview visit my profile and use that as a potential resource when we meet.

    at #
  45. Just going to say 2 things:

    “Well rounded”
    And
    “Strongly positioned”

    Meaning you don’t have to do it all, and you don’t have to be completely perfect. You just have to stand out. Some things will stand out in a bad way to some. (spelling/grammar) for some that is the cardinal sin.

    And if I have errors here, I did not write my resume or LI profile on a qwerty keyboard of my Droid mobile device. Nor did I overly proof it, or have several others proof it. My apologies in advance for for diminishing the value of my contributions to the discussion with potential spelling and grammar errors.

    at #
  46. Excellent article, reflects the refined discipline and adaptability of your military career. Keep up the good work and efforts. You remind me of majority of the folks I worked with, for, and commanded. One thing I would remind everyone, network is an extension of team work and an edge for each transition.

    at #
  47. Sultan,
    I think it’s wonderful that there are people like you out there now who are motivated to help transitioning veterans. I got out of the Army in 1987, and at that time as far as I could tell no one was interested in helping veterans in any way. The only guidance I ever got was people told me I needed to describe my military experience in civilian terms as if it were a civilian job. I was an Army Ranger, and I never could figure out how to civilianize my experience, and I never knew anyone else who was able to do it either. I quickly realized that I needed to completely re-educate myself and start over from scratch despite graduating near the top of my class from West Point. When I did this I looked around for a well paying career field with the biggest shortage of employees. Because of this strategy I’m now a very, very well paid senior software engineer and developer. I know what it feels like, and I would like to help in mentoring a transitioning service member if there is one who thinks I could help them.

    at #
  48. A very overlooked tactic is going to the companies you’d like to work for even if they are not hiring. Make a face to face with the owner, hiring manger or whoever controls the hiring and make a personal connection. Stay in touch every 3 to 6 months and if and when a job does come open they will remember you. When first starting this approach ask about the company, what it does where it is going etc all the small talk crap and at the same time research them so you can talk intelligently about what they produce, control or offer the the customer. Meet some of the other people in office or if available take a tour if they allow it. This type of networking can also lead to other jobs that the company many sub-contract to that are similar to what you are wanting.
    And remember if you retired from the military you are being duly compensated for that service in retirement benefits. It shouldn’t be discounted the time you sacrificed to our country but it shouldn’t mean you are entitled to the job. If you approach it this way in a humble manner the arrogance I have witnessed sometimes by retired military is a huge put off. I’m ex military and now DoD with 23 years.

    at #
  49. One of the things that this article didn’t touch on is the difficulty that retired military people have getting civilian jobs, especially as compared to people who got out earlier in their careers. As a hiring manager, and an Air Force veteran, I prefer to hire vets when the opportunity presents itself. I also am very wary about hiring retirees, particularly retired senior enlisted. It’s a problem of experience versus qualifications. For example, a retired E-7 or E-8 was likely in a position of leadership over a fairly large group of people. An Air Force E-7, for example, was likely a shop chief with 30 or more people working for them. The problem is that many times that retired E-7 doesn’t have the education for a comparable job in the civilian sector, or there may not even be a position that translates. That’s even more true for someone like a retired Army E-8 who was in a First Sergeant billet. There is no civilian equivalent to that position. So, I can’t necessarily hire you to be a manager. There’s a good chance you don’t have that bachelor’s degree that my H.R. department has told me is a requirement for those positions (equivalent experience doesn’t count like it used to) and your experience doesn’t translate well to our corporate structure. OK, what about a technical position? Well, how long has it been since you did anything technical? Oh, you were a supervisor and manager the last seven to ten years of your career? You haven’t touched equipment and are hopelessly behind on technology? OK, that’s out too.

    The other major problem in hiring retired senior enlisted is that even if I do decide to hire you, likely as a technician, there’s a good chance you’ll be resentful taking orders from someone younger than you who “hasn’t paid their dues.” Yes, I’ve had that happen, and those exact words were spoken. In the military there’s a clearly drawn out path, and if you don’t get promoted within a certain time frame they boot you out. The civilian world is not like that. Understand that just because you have experience, or even because you hang around for a long time, there’s a good chance you’ll never be management. Sorry, but that’s just how it is.

    My best advice to anyone getting out of the military, but particularly to senior enlisted personnel who are looking at retirement is to finish that bachelor’s degree. Don’t go to Capella, or Phoenix or Grantham, find a regionally accredited well known school and get a a degree in something useful Business is great if you don’t know what you want to be when you grow up. Engineering, computer science or some other type of technical degree are better. Whatever you do, do something. Like the writer here said, understand that you are starting over. Give yourselves the tools to get where you want to be.

    at #
  50. Sultan was my mentor during my transition from a 25 year military career. I had a solid job with the pay I wanted, and in the location I wanted, THREE months before my final retirement date. Now that I am a hiring manager for my organization I have personal experience regarding his article. The best advice I can give anyone leaving the military is use your time wisely. If you are waiting for a month or two before you start your job search then you are way behind the power curve. Work on building your network and join organizations where you can meet people in the industry you want to work in. If you want to fly like an eagle, then you must hang out with eagles. Sultan your the best. Thank you for being there for me.

    at #
  51. Great article, and spot on. Best interview I had was when the interviewer was brutally honest with me and said “You really don’t want to work for us, do you?” (he was right – I was only “going through the motions” out of desperation). “Suck back and reload” was the best advice, and he wasn’t afraid to tell me. Thanks.

    at #
  52. I agree to what you have written. But there are exceptions to your answers. When applying to a government job the resume must be long. A computer must understand what you write then an bro rep reads to finalize your application. I have been very blessed by God I transitioned from the marine corps. I was a common steel worker for less than a year then I hit on the list for a government job. I started out making 14 an hour. Now 5 years later I make almost 26. And have become the General Mechanic for a whole government base. All we really need is faith and strength thru GOD.

    at #
    • Amen,
      I had a Colonel tell me one day that if is God’s will no man can change it.

      at #
  53. Sorry, but I have a real beef with number 1. As a veteran you should know that it’s required to move every two to four years. For numerous individuals it meant learning an entirely new job in a brand new organization. Those who attained the senior NCO and field grade ranks especially have been coming in brand new, learning about the organization and it’s people in a minuscule amount of time and then leading that organization to new heights. We’ve been doing this our whole career so why wouldn’t we expect to jump right in and make huge impacts? I’m not saying we should expect to walk in and take over as CEO but expecting that we should start out at the bottom of the totem pole is just as unrealistic.
    But I know the civilian sector just doesn’t understand. That is why I would hope that organizations such as Orion would help veterans translate that into a résumé or cover letter and even educate HR personnel that you have contact with. After all, this is one of the huge benefits veterans bring to the table – immediate impact.

    at #
    • Moving two to 4 years is not necessarily true for enlisted members. Also, it really depends on ones career choices after transitioning from the military as to whether they would need to start from the beginning. Mitigating one’s assumption that I was a Sgt or Capt in the military therefore I should start in an upper level position would help also.

      at #
      • I think the point here is that you start at a lower level to prove yourself. Take one step backwards to take two steps forward. In the military promotions occur at fairly well defined time intervals. If you work for a good company taking a lower position should not be an issue because you will be able to quickly prove yourself and promote at an accelerated rate.

        at #
    • How many times have you gotten a new CO and all he/she wanted to do was change something that was working so they could put it on their FITREP, regardless of best practices. Or on the other end having a new Sgt who want to be gung-ho and crack heads to show he means business. These actions do not translate into the civilian sector. It is simply bad business. When he discusses starting over he is discussing getting out of your comfort zone. The military is tribal. You dress alike, act alike and say the same things. Being away from that is very stressful and without proper guidance or understanding, you will resort to your training and culture which translates into not fitting in with corporate culture or being able to relate to those you work around.

      at #
    • Great points!

      at #
    • Matt,

      You are correct that this is something private sector HR Depts. and hiring managers need to learn and educate themselves on, however the organizations are not there to make the transition easier for military members. They are there to supply the business with qualified candidates. Being a veteran and now a hiring manager for a DC I only look for qualified candidates that can make an immediate impact–Though I would love for those candidates to be my military brothers, they usually aren’t. I don’t have the time and or resources to learn what a candidate might bring to the table. I just need you to come in and immediately understand how my business works. The most effective way for someone who is transitioning to learn about the private sector is to start hanging out with people that are in the private sector well before you leave the service. Also attend industry trade shows, take civilian training courses. If you plan ahead and make the transition in your career and most importantly in your life and acquaintances. It will make landing that corporate job a lot easier and you will not have to rely on anyone to learn about your culture and accept where you are coming from.

      at #
      • Perhaps you are forgetting one important quality of our Military….we are TRAINABLE. Unless your business is something that is straightforward,, I think you’re asking a lot for someone to come in and make the immediate impact that you’re looking for. I think it is a bit dis-disillusioned that industry is seeking that “perfect” candidate. In my opinion, there’s no such thing. Most Military members are still deployed and cannot frequent the industry days you referred to. And once they return, there may not be any industry days nearby to even attend. However, if you ARE finding them, good for you. At least someone is trying to hire us.

        at #
    • Good job proving his point.

      at #
    • i completely agree

      at #
    • My First Sargent at Fort Drum was stationed there for 10 years.

      at #
  54. Some very good points, and not all are exclusive to transitioning military. A resume may lead to a human to human interaction, but at the end of the day, it comes down to personalities. Arriving at an interview with the expectation of receiving basic company information available on the internet is a obvious “non-starter” Have to do your reconnaissance.

    at #
    • You know the old saying ‘… time spent on recon is rarely wasted’!

      at #
  55. I am interested in your comment, “Many may blame the new Transition GPS”. How so? Examples? I am a TGPS Employment Workshop Facilitator and I stress every one of your points from this article. Now, does the transitioning veteran choose to use the tools presented during the three day workshop? That is the question. I see a lot of reluctance to accept what is considered industry standard. You can lead a veteran to success but you can’t make them embrace it.

    at #
    • As a recently transitioned service member; I would say this about GPS. GPS is a great program for the allotted time they have with each of us. Some classes may be better than others given the variance in instructors. But the one thing that must be remembered when trying to put blame on any transition assistance program is that it ultimately falls on you to prepare. each individual NEEDS to practice and apply what they have learned to be successful in an interview or even in creating a resume. Another thing I will mention is that it is highly likely that those who blame GPS for their subpar performance in the their job search were probably the one’s who didn’t take the class seriously. Great article though, I have lived these lessons in the countless “practice” (with real companies) and this is spot on. One thing that has worked like clock work for me in each interview is remembering to just be a person. We are not on the drill field or even sitting on a board anymore. Just make the person or persons on the other side of the interview table like you. Even if you’re not the best candidate on paper you may still get the job because the hiring manager can identify with you as a likable human.

      at #
  56. I’ve deployed twice. Once as an enlisted soldier and once as an officer. I’ve been on active duty and been in the national guard. I’ve worked for tips and for salary. I’ve worked on the hiring side of the table for several job/career fairs and I can’t stress enough how accurate this article is (in general). Oh you were in the Navy from 1983-1987? Wow! You’re a hero with invaluable job skills! I wish I was exaggerating, but that’s what so many veterans want to hear. The most accurate part of this article is how poorly written most resumes are. Recruiters don’t speak in your jargon and have no idea what those acronyms mean. I’ve personally experienced a situation where a veteran volunteered that he didn’t know how he was supposed to include his military service on his resume… Seriously? How about a sentence?

    at #
  57. This is a good article, but with anything the writer gives his opinion on how he thinks operate not industry standards. The article is also slanted towards “I got my job” and if I don’t like you, I will not help you. I was a senior NCO with twenty-three years of service, Masters degree and have added a new skill yearly sense retirement. I couldn’t find a job so I went through a temp agency and have worked a (one) for four years. I reached out to Orion, Lucas and countless other organizations for assistance. So folks I will give you my two cents; “Your bronze star, your purple heart, an Honorable discharge, your college educations and a dollar will get you a cup of coffee off the dollar menu at McDonald’s (and by the way they will not hire you either).” The key is “boots on the ground” and no one will help you but you.

    at #
    • Mr. Piland: My second career is as an disabled veteran employment counselor and, after reading your post, I must recommend that you proofread first, and then have someone else proofread your resume. Possession of a Master’s degree should be reflected in your grammar, spelling, and correct word choice, i.e., using “sense” instead of “since”. Thank you for your service, and remember – somewhere, someone is looking for exactly what you have to offer. Don’t give up, & good luck!

      at #
      • Niteflyer, you are my hero (although using a comma before the word “and” is a bit gauche, don’t you think?).

        Mr. Piland- I help Military Veterans transition into the job market and I see Veterans exhibit at least two of these traits every day. I would recommend that in your search for your next career you learn from others’ mistakes and excel; but no one gets there alone.

        at #
  58. Spot on! I completed a 6 year AF enlistment and earned the rank of Staff Sergeant. I completed 3 years worth of college while in uniform and finished my bachelors in less than 1 year after separating. Instead of viewing my military service as “free ticket” to the job I wanted, I simply looked at it as a slight leg up from new college grads with only retail or restaurant experience. I eventually competed for and was selected for an UNPAID internship where I was able to gain the only TRUE meat to any resume, direct experience. I went from leading troops as an NCO to fetching coffee and making endless copies FOR FREE. While it wasn’t an easy pill to swallow, I understood my current situation (which I chose) and made the best of it. I had to accept that fact that I was the FNG/E-1 in this company’s eyes and had to make my mark in any way that I could. It took 2 years from separation to make what I was in the AF and now I’m proud to be making much more and living where I want to and not where Uncle Sam needs me.

    at #
    • Great comment Jake. In 1984 when I seperated from the Air Force I looked at the opportunity to get a college degree in the same manner – a must. Prospective employers didn’t notice my military background and while I was dissapointed 30 years ago, the same happens today. I worked 2 jobs to put myself through college and leaned on my military discipline to complete college in record time as well. Being an FNG isn’t a bad thing, it helps one’s humility. I have since gone on to get my MBA as well and work for a top 4 bank earning a great living… I have my AF drill seargent to thank as I hear him telling me to suck it up when I feel sorry for myself.

      at #
  59. Very interesting article as I was reading this I thought to myself “These are the same concerns that I have had”, but the thing is this. I have already done all these things without going through the ACAP process. I have a LINKEDIN account and a resume that has been reviewed by LTC in the Air National Guard as well as a GS-11 and GS-14 cilivian employee. My question to you is this, if I have done all these things and have managed to obtain my BS in Criminal Justice Administration and have focused my resume towards the jobs I am looking at. What steps do you think I should take to better myslef in the job market.

    at #
  60. Sultan, This is a great article and certainly should open the eyes of transitioning service members. I recently retired after nearly 30 years and while I know I’m “starting over” I don’t think starting over should translate into entry-level (possibly minimum wage) opportunities when I took a concentrated effort to further my education and experience. Where I get frustrated is if the corporate sector knows “what” we bring to the table, then why doesn’t corporate America have more of a process to assist the veteran in this transition? I look at the job postings and I know I’m qualified for the position but feel like I would be insulting somebody’s intellect if I cut and pasted the keywords into a resume. And if the keyword is misspelled on the post, it probably needs to be misspelled in my resume (I don’t handle the little red underline very well).
    I will keep plugging away applying for the jobs I know will continue to fuel my passion. In nearly 30 years of service I never had a day where I didn’t want to put on the uniform. Now I want to hang that loyalty and dedication on a corporate position.

    at #
  61. Great article, this is exactly what a lot of us need(ed) to hear when exiting the military. I for one was told E-5 = GS-9. So that is what I applied for. I love the description you gave about going from Corporate to Military. When you look at it that way it makes even less sense.

    at #
  62. A great article and a lot of common sense. I am a retiree from the British Army after 25 years service and the rank of Warrant Officer Class 2. I have moved many, many times during my career, had steep learning curves as many people have detailed. I earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees during AD, and sought out voluntary positions to gained experience in the field of those qual’s. I have now moved to the US with my family and seeking employment has been more difficult than I anticipated, not only with being a transitioning soldier, and moving overseas, but also the licensure requirements for my particular career field.

    Fortunately I am humble; I know where I need to set my foundations, and I have accepted an entry-level position in a great company where there is potential for progress. Not only that, but if I choose to move on at a later date, the company will be recognized by future employers. Another bonus is that the position has much less stress and responsibility than I had in the military, which I am hoping will translate into a more relaxed me, and therefore a more relaxed family.

    Many of us veterans do have a lot to offer employers beyond the ‘required competencies/skills’ listed in the job ad. Creat a resume that gets you the interview, once there, that chance provides you with an opportunity to sell yourself. The best bit of advice I could offer here is to be honest, and to be yourself. If it feels right, there’s a good chance that it will be right. As has been said before, sometimes it is more of how you ‘feel’ to the interviewer that determines whether or not you will be successful.

    at #
    • Take it by the numbers, like the military first things first. Start with an assessement of your self. Ask these questions. What do I have to bring to the table? What do I have that will set me apart from other candidates? Do I have the required compentencies and skills’ that are listed in the Job ad? If you feel good with your answers; contact your local DVOP/LVER for assistance. Usually the DVOP’s and LVER’s have labor market information and many Companies contact them when they are looking to hire Veterans. Finally, write that “Award Winning Resume” that will land you the interview. Then convience your inteviewer that you are the one that will move the organization in any direction. Additional information on locating your local DVOP and LVER are attaced:
      http://dvoplverlocator.nvti.ucdenver.edu/

      at #
  63. I thought this article to be very interesting. As an employment specialist i service veterans and civilians every day for employment advice and this information is good for anyone in the job market. Some people don’t have a clue on where to start because they have made so much money on a previous job. It is so different in today’s society and many jobs are not paying no where near what they use to make. Last week alot of people showed up only because the extended unemployment benefits ended. I always “keep it real” with customers and try to lead them down a positive career path. If their email address sounds offessive, resume is too long, have too many letters of recommendation, i suggest that they correct it

    at #
  64. Con’t–.Many people are going to have to settle for temporary jobs, until they can find something better.

    at #
  65. I can certainly attest to the validity of most points the author makes. On a critical note, the observation that some make about veterans’ abilities to rapidly morph into new units, ascend steep learning curves and hold themselves responsible for immediate performance objectives is spot on; it is unique hallmark of successful non-commissioned and commissioned officers. The reality is that most civilian corporations do not comprehend this aspect. We can argue all we want that we are capable of doing the job and learning very quickly, and in many cases could do so, but most civilian hiring officials place a higher premium on experience in their fields. This is an industry-neutral discriminator that veterans have to overcome and learn how to market themselves to compete with their new class of peers in the civilian world.

    From my own recent experience, I’ve had many a conversation with Big-4 consulting firms and other Fortune 500 companies and illustrated how I ran billion-dollar programs at the Army level. Impressed were they? Usually, yes… but then the question: “So… what kind of corporate experience do you have outside the military?” Answer: none. It is much like the author’s point about the military not recruiting Generals and Sergeants Major off the street; it takes time to grow and groom them as their industry experience is what makes them invaluable. Adjusting to this reality, accepting a willingness to start from scratch and getting the foot in the door leads to a better opportunity to prove your value and demonstrate what made you successful in the military.

    at #
  66. Interesting article, loads of good information however there are a few things that are left out for the transitioning service member.

    Who to ask to help filling out this award winning resume and how much to expect to pay for the service? Most employment agencies are was mentioned before, don’t have a clue to what some of the buzz words we use in the military mean in the civilian sector. Nor can they translate everything one does in the military into a skill which civilian employers value.

    How to taylor your resume to fit the job you are applying for and to include the right keywords to make your resume standout from the others? We are told this by mutitudes of experts and yet not many can define what keywords are needed for each job. It would be nice to know the process of how the computer algorithims sort applicants by the bases of the particular keywords and where one can find all of the specific ones to include in their resume.

    How long can one reasonably expect to be searching for a job until you are hired? The average job search can take more than a year and transitioning military members need to be aware to have how many months of savings that they need to have in the bank.

    at #
  67. One of the toughest things for a senior officer to do is to walk into a new job and not try to immediately start “making things better.” That’s been our mentality (and expectations by most of our former bosses) for 30 year or more. Well, that mentality will get you fired … probably not even hired. Particularly “sinful” is the transitioning officer/leader who believes his or her “road to success” is better than what their new bosses are telling them to follow. I spoke with one executive who had hired a GO, only to let him go 6 weeks later because the gent wouldn’t follow the processes and procedures that the company dictated/expected from its senior managers. The GO knew better … he was smarter, more confident, and very authoritative in his approach, despite a couple of discussion with his bosses about adhering to company policies. He was fired. Pay attention … do what you’re asked/told to do. Once you have established yourself and have garnered some respect and admiration for your work, then bring up those issues you feel could be made better. Until then, keep your head down and the shoulder to the grindstone … kind of like you did as a new 2Lt.

    at #
  68. Many important points were shared here; this is great advice. I left the USAF nearly 40 years ago and transitioned back to civilian life. I had been a communications officer. I spent the time and money to get some career advice and to polish my resume, which spoke to my accomplishments in a way that world resonate in civilian business. Everyone I met or interviewed with was impressed. The problem I encountered was on of leveling. As a First Lieutenant and Captain, I had managed a team of 45 maintenance technicians in Europe and had a $12 million equipment account. I then moved to a headquarters position and gave management guidance to communications units throughout Europe. Few civilian hiring executives believed I would be willing to start at the bottom., which was exacerbated by a recessionary hiring market (1975). I could have use some advice from people who had made a similar transition but did not know anyone. Without the Internet, information was not as readily available. I briefly returned to commercial radio news reporting, which I had done before entering the USAF but found may way into executive recruiting and later retained search. I now do mentoring and coaching and am an adjunct professor. My military years are one of the defining periods of my life; I would not trade it for anything. I wish that people like Mr. Camp had been available to me then.

    at #
  69. Also remember you are no longer in an ARE (Acronym Rich Enviornment). Try to limit your use of acronyms to those the interviewer is using.

    at #
  70. Sultan,
    Thank you for your article. It has many great common sense suggestions and reminders for all job seekers. However, I found the title misleading (and unsettling) as your information is not exclusive to Military. Additionally, I believe your article should be proofread, again. 😉 (But, hey, everyone makes little writing mistakes.). And I am hoping your article was written in the spirit of helping transitioning Military Veterans by trying to give them an edge with your suggestions and or reminders. 🙂

    at #
  71. Thank you for recognizing military service. However, I think the title of your essay should be changed. As soon as I read the title, I decided right away that I never want to work for your company. Why? Because you stated 9 reasons you won’t hire me.

    As I started reading this I thought this might be somewhat beneficial to read. I quickly lost interest as I read on.

    Although you are a veteran yourself, you seem like it’s a chore to even consider a veteran for a position, and some of your points are the the exact things that discourage veterans from seeking work after one or two years of unemployment. We are willing and desperate for work, but you’ve already said at the top of your essay, “Not only will I not hire you, but here are nine reasons why.”

    What I would really like to see is an article written with this title: “Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Will Hire You.”

    at #
  72. Enjoyed the article and the recommendations.

    at #
  73. After 30 years of active duty service and attending TAP ( Now GPS) class twice, I think was prepared to transit to a civilian job. Most of the points in this article were used and extremely helpful. I did see that all didn’t have to come into play, because everyone’s job search and circumstance varies. I was able to interveiw with several companies, while on terminal leave, and chose the one that was a better fit for me. One interview was strictly for practice and gaining interviewing experience, really had no interest in the position they hiring for. I say gather all the info you can and use what’s going to to help you in your job search for the job you really want.

    at #
  74. Nice article. Most all very true. I was very lucky when I retired after 29 + years. Had a good friend in civilian world who wanted me to work for his organization. Transitioned within one week after retirement. Did not go on vacation like I wanted. But was glad it worked for me. My recommendation to all who are retiring or just retired is hook up with a Veteran friend who is already working the civilian world , they are some of the best help you can receive and get a good job. Veterans help veterans. !! One important thing I found out was – as soon as you retire – you are just another civilian !! No salutes, No standing up for you, and no- Yes Sirs. Quite a different world, and it takes time to make the adjustment. I found out that one of the big differences in civilian world is the US Military Retirement Check that goes from the US Treasury to your checking account. Civilian are very aware of how much you earn, and kind of gage you in this fashion. All in all there are many jobs for Veterans in the civilian world, just look for them and forget you were in the military when you land one. You need to start fresh. Good Luck !! Thank You For Your Honorable Service!!

    at #
  75. Good advice for active folks with no civilian experience.

    Would like to see an article, (and I have yet to see one, ever) about findings and the complexities of searching for employment while a member of the National Guard or Reserves. With all the deployments, it seems either getting out or trying to reassure employers you wont get deployed (probably) is the way to go, but Id like to hear other folks experiences.

    at #
  76. The article is a very well rounded start for the post military career. I see a lot of caviling (sniping) at many of the suggestions offered. Just remember, there is no perfect solution that fits everyone. The take-away from the article is that you have to prepare just like it was a mission you were undertaking.

    I served from 1969 to 1995 in the Air Force as both enlisted and officer. I had a lot of great jobs and met a ton of outstanding people. When I started interviewing, no one I interviewed with had served one day in any branch. My first interview had 7 people on one side of the table and I was the lone soul on the other. A MOAA seminar I attended a week before my interview mentioned this type of interview was occurring more often. And, bang! there I was. Had I not heard it mentioned, I might have rolled over and died. But I hung in and got a job offer that started a whole new career for me in private education. Andin the 18 years of retirement, I moved a bunch (sound familiar?), 6 times in the first 10 years. I have found a home and have been in my current position for the past 8 years.

    The bottom line in searching for a job is that you have to find all the resources available to you from veteran’s associations, to vets you personal know, to the internet to get information on employers to prepare your “assault.” You must spend time crafting your resume and cover letter. That means finding someone, hopefully more, sharper and smarter than yourself who is outside the military. You will never catch all the stuff that needs to be fixed. They might.

    I have read thousands and I can tell you that one quick glance is sometimes all you get. If something stands out, it may get read in more detail. None of us have the time to read every word. Formatting counts; pretty is better than ugly. But, it’s still the words that get read. But ugliness ensures it will reach the garbage faster.

    You must dress appropriately. Make sure your clothes fit and that they are clean. Don’t lean on my desk. It’s not a bed. And yes, people have done that.

    I have a personal dislike of posting resumes on-line. You can search the boards and then get the information you need to send a resume directly. If there is a name in the ad, use it! I trash every resume that is not sent to my attention because I figure they are too dumb to work for me. If they can’t follow the instruction that says send to: they can’t follow directions.

    Finding a job is a full time job. Take it seriously. It is best accomplished in your time before you separate from active duty if you can. I was very fortunate that I was hired and had almost 70 days in the bank plus transition time. I left active duty on Friday and started driving to my new job Saturday. Starting a new job was like a vacation. It was absolutely fabulous to be so absorbed again in something completely new. My wife used to call me at night and let me know it was time to stop having fun. And to this day, it continues to be the same good time. I wish you all well.

    at #
  77. Really good information. I am a retired National Guard Senior NCO that has been on deployments since 2001. I have decided to transition into a logistical industry management position from a customer service employment history that ended in 2001. I have been working with several Veteran services for employment and seem to be missing the mark and am not sure why. This article has given me additional avenues to pursue. I would appreciate any further insights that would assist me in my pursuit of a new career.
    Thanks again for the insight Mr. Camp

    at #
  78. Outstanding article. I love the 9 reasons. I just wrote a new blog post and referred my readers back to your article. I am planning on dedicating an episode of the Lead Like a Marine Podcast to your valuable information. I will most definitely refer my listeners back to your article. Keep up the great work!

    at #
  79. Mr. Camp, overall, great article!!!! However, I don’t agree with the segment on social networking sites. I have had a lot of issues with social networking sites. My first social site I had was on Facebook. Someone got a hold of my email address and started sending spam emails with it. Also, I don’t want someone, that doesn’t like me, to see that I have a social site page and start sending me hateful emails as I have had that happen before. I’m concerned that if an employer sees that on any social networking site, that employer will get the wrong opinion of me. Personally, I think if employers are turning to social network sites to determine if they want to hire someone is enough to send chills down my spine. The question, coming to my mind, is “DO THEY REALLY WANT TO CONSIDER ME FOR THE POSITION OR THEY TRYING TO DIG INTO MY PERSONAL BUSINESS?” Sorry to have to make this negative comment about social networking sites, but it’s a reality that some people don’t want to face. Finally, I think that with Facebook facing a possible class-action lawsuit against them that employers would want to quit searching social networking sites for now.

    at #
    • Thanks for the candid feedback David! Here’s an article that provides some insight on that very thing. The job market is really transforming in terms of the transparency of potential candidates. Let me know what you think. http://bit.ly/1fgzeuw

    • David, the landscape of social and professional media has changed and/or evolved from what you’ve just described. Recruiters aren’t using your personal social site to make hiring decisions, but they may use it to contact you, or market TO you, just like any other advertisement.
      As far as “hateful emails/messages” that you’ve mentioned, all modern social/pro media sites have options that allow you to control what is public on your page (see Sultan’s link). Nobody should be able to see anything that you don’t want them to see. We live in a very public, over-sharing society, but that doesn’t mean that we all have to be over-sharers. Social and professional media are a GREAT way to keep in touch, socialize and share valuable information, and in most cases today, they are how someone got connected to their next career… it doesn’t have to be a negative experience if we have the right tools.

      at #
  80. I’m a USMA grad and entered industry at the beginning of the formal movement to recruit, present and engage JMOs. I’ve hired many transitioning service members from junior enlisted to senior NCO to JMO to senior officers. My success rate is less than 30% because they have failed in industry.
    Good points made in the article. I can agree and endorse all with a few to add and some to embellish.
    Start over -yes. That’s what happens in business when you change industries or even corporate cultures. The focus should not be on proving yourself, but on LEARNING the industry, technology and company culture. It’s all about doing the job, pleasing your boss and getting along with everyone. This belief that you expose your superior talents and managerial skills to industry so they can suddenly discover your amazing talents is not the case. It also fosters the belief that industry is filled with nincompoops and bozos who desperately need the managerial bazinga of the veteran.
    Identify your career path in the first company you join out of the military – ridiculous. How about find a job that does not restrict future opportunities, master it and perform well. Few if any in business today stays in the same company or even industry. So charting a decades long pathway from the first company based upon on their perceived personnel policies is just a dumb waste of time. Everyone is the custodian of their own career path. The military might have a clear path to promotion defined, published and practiced, but industry does not.
    Finally, while the nation owes a debt to veterans and we in the older generation are psychologically disposed to avoid repeating the way our contemporaries were treated post Vietnam, if you think we owe you a path to success – get over yourself. If entitlement creeps into the equation you’ll be on the path to failure.

    at #
  81. I need this article. Time to do some changing and work. I have one question my military training was very job specific. When I left the military I went to school for management, administration and concentrated on human resources. I accepted a GS-5 position in pharmacy because that was my army job in hopes I would be able to cross over based on education. I now have a masters in administration concentration human resources but I get notifications when I apply for positions for GS-5 HR positions that I do not meet the education requirements, or experience so end up not eligible. Yet GS-6 positions I get referred to hiring official (then the job gets canceled of course) Where am I going wrong.

    at #
  82. Interesting article, even if I disagree with the points. I’m a vet that was discharged some time ago who just completed a VA training program to acquire new job skills.

    1. You Can’t (or Won’t) Accept That You’re Starting Over
    I’m not a strategic nuclear missile technician looking for a job in the private sector as a strategic nuclear missile technician. I’m an ex-GI whose time in service moved me up through the ranks, and I’m a veteran who has completed training courses in current IT subjects. I should still start over in an entry level job with just any employer and not apply for IT positions directly? Really?

    As a second issue, do you have any idea how many recruiters and employers fail to equate rank with supervisory experience? All of them, without exception.

    2. You Believe You’re Unique (Just Like Every Other Transitioning Person That Day)
    I don’t have something special or unique that distinguishes me from other applicants? I don’t have qualifications that make me stand out from the crowd? What was the purpose of my education? Why am I applying for the job?

    3. Your Resume Is Longer Than the CEO of Our Company’s (or Shorter Than a Recent College Graduate’s)
    The first three pages of my resume cover the last 18 years of my work history. The next four pages of it are broken off with a page break as additional information based on recruiters’ questions during initial phone interviews. The first three pages have been reviewed by countless recruiters who pronounce those three pages fit for dissemination because they are easily read in less than 60 seconds; the important stuff is read in 15 seconds from the first page.

    4. You Didn’t Proofread Your Resume
    My resume has been proofread at each and every editing change. More importantly, it’s better prepared than most job postings, because it’s logically organized and makes sense.

    5. You Don’t Have a LinkedIn Profile (Or, Even Worse, It’s Not Complete)
    My LinkedIn Profile goes back 20 years, and covers all periods of employment in my occupational field. One more page on the resume, and it, too, would go back 20 years.

    6. You Think Social Media Is For Kids or Sharing War Stories
    All social media is formal and professional? Really?

    7. You Didn’t Prepare For The Interview
    I usually spend a good half hour researching the company online before an interview, and I can describe the business better than any recruiter and as well as any current company employee. I’m on time for the interview, and I’m dressed well. I have a copy of my resume, even when you don’t. I clear off two hours for the interview, even though the average appears to be 20 minutes. My interview answers ar equick, clear, concise, and complete – less than 60 seconds per answer.

    8. You Wrote a Thank You Note (But Only to Say Thank You)
    I have something to add that wasn’t presented (or solicited) in the interview? How about I showed up well dressed and early, I gave quick, complete, concise, and clear answers to all your interview questions, had a copy of my resume when you didn’t, and the interview still took 20 minutes. The thank you letter should add details or perspectives you didn’t think worth soliciting in the interview? Really?

    9. You Don’t Know What You Want to Do
    I spent hours poring over online job postings to find your job posting. I spent 15 minutes duplicating information onto your web site from my resume because your web site feeds an applicant tracking system. I spent 10 minutes on a “initial phone screen” with your HR department. I spent a half hour researching your company to become familiar with the service it provides, and I know it better than my interviewer. I carved out two hours out of my day of job hunting at your convenience to attend the interview, I showed up on time and dressed well (business professional is now quite easy to pull together). I lost a half hour because the interviewer was late, and was out of there 20 minutes later because my answers were quick, clear, concise, and complete, I still expressed gratitude to the interviewer at the opportunity to interview. I now have an unproductive hour free because your interviewer wrote down my answers to his/her scripted questions, promised those answers would be reviewed by the hiring manager, and informed me that the hiring process would run at least a week before any decision would be formulated. I went home, hunted down an address to someone (you didn’t offer me a card with your e-mail address) and still composed and dispatched a thank you e-mail over the opportunity to interview.

    I think I’ve demonstrated that I want to work for your company. Care to try me?

    at #
  83. Do you mind if I quote a few of your articles as long as I provide credit and sources back to your website?

    My blog site is in the very same niche as yours and my visitors would truly benefit from some of the
    information you present here. Please let me know if this ok with you.
    Regards!

  84. While most of your reasons are wholly valid and some are partially valid, overall they are a good prep.

    That being said, there is one specific item I take issue with is your “jack of all trades” comment. Being incredibly pragmatic I’m firmly convinced experience makes us who we are. It also increases the number of tools available to us when attempting to solve other problems. While I agree listing certain collaterals or volunteer work amount to fluff, the decision on what to add should be determined by the meat of what was accomplished and what experience was gained. It is entirely possible that a PCS takes one into a completely new job skill — again, more experience — and the trick is the ability to tie what appear disparate experiences together.
    Assuming one is listing an accomplishment or experience that differs from their previous tour one should be able to explain what they learned, how the experience ties with other tours and most importantly, what it means (i.e. how it benefits) the prospective employer.
    Military folks are constantly required to improvise, adapt, and overcome. Our experiences have made us the “jack of all trades” in ways that overshadow the competition. Use the advantage you’ve earned properly and shine in ways your competition cannot.
    Mr. Camp clearly stated ” I’m not looking for a “jack of all trades”; if I were, the job posting would have said so.” I’d maintain that most HR departments and those hiring really are looking for the jack of all trades — it’s the applicant’s responsibility to show them the greater benefit to hiring them because of the vast and varied experience.

    Final note, while it should be obvious I’ll say it anyway, you’d better be able to show how your jack of all trades experience translates into exceptionalism benefiting thejob you’re applying and interviewing for. Shouldn’t be a major issue though — IMPROVISE, ADAPT, & OVERCOME!

    HOOYAH!

    at #
  85. Sultan, great article! As both a corporate VP and a 36-year Navy veteran, I agree with ~90% of your substance here. It is true, transitioning military folks do have certain expectations about the value they bring to the “outside” but what I have found is that most of the time those expectations default on the LOW side. By and large, military people can do anything, PERIOD. Put them somewhere, and they will 1) read the manuals, instructions, guidance, reviews, etc.; 2) talk and listen to those who have been doing it for a long time; 3) map the existing processes, identifying gaps and undue risks; 4) adapt, improve processes, and take charge. They will do all of this, because THAT is what military people do. They move around from job to job every few years, and they make decisions…something I have found sorely lacking in the civilian side of my own diverse military active/reserve/bank brokerage career. Military people are “trigger pullers” figuratively speaking. They create choices (courses of action–COA), determine risks and costs, decide what is best, recommend that COA, and execute when approved by higher authority. Then they monitor progress, adjust en route, and meanwhile look at new ways to improve other processes or better–create new processes altogether. Currently, the leader of the FREE WORLD had not the leadership nor experience to run a 7-Eleven store, so in the end…lots we say about the hiring process is bologna when it comes to a class of people (i.e., successful career military) who have BOTH and who can do anything and everything, if/when hired and turned loose!

    at #
  86. “Matt,
    The most effective way for someone who is transitioning to learn about the private sector is to start hanging out with people that are in the private sector well before you leave the service. Also attend industry trade shows, take civilian training courses. If you plan ahead and make the transition in your career and most importantly in your life and acquaintances. It will make landing that corporate job a lot easier and you will not have to rely on anyone to learn about your culture and accept where you are coming from.”

    As a Veteran and CEO of my own Start-Up, I think Matt hit the nail on the head above. I served my country and was assigned to my organization as a Budget Tech. I completed 10 years on active duty and became a Defense Contractor doing the same exact job I was doing while in the uniform. I spent the next 12 years of Ctr. time preparing myself on how to create and run my own company. I look at my entire military and dod career as time spent moonlighting in a career that prepared me to become who I wanted to be for the rest of my life.

    Due to the nature of my company I’m asked to speak and work with Active Military and Retirees on a regular basis. I have a current employee that consults for a company that has a contract with the Dept of Labor and we talk about these issues frequently.

    Thoughts….
    1. Stop writing those books for resumes – Nobody cares you spent 30 years in the WAR. Summarize it Please

    2. Officers – Your Commission ends when you retire or separate. Stop feeling entitled! We appreciate your service but actually there are more qualified candidates for the position.

    3. Loosen up – So many veterans have that SOLDIER personality. It often doesn’t come across well in civilian interviews with the non- serving folks asking the questions.

    4. My personal opinion – Have a passion for something? Try and start your own business when you leave the military. Suggest that you start working on it about a year before you punch out. If you haven’t don’t? Don’t be discouraged just use that determination and know- how that the military taught and use your military network.

    Finally – As I stated I’m running my own start-up and we are experiencing growth. If your interested in Tech, Sales, Marketing, or Advertising? Feel free to reach out to me or send me your resume. My info can be located at http://www.govsavings.com

    V/R

  87. – Congrats on Your Military Service – Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You
    http://t.co/WYHtgdxnzE
    – Read the Comments, too …

  88. I agree with this article whole heartedly! After retiring from the Navy as an Independent Duty Submarine Corpsman with both an MBA and an MPA, I bounced around on some great Jobs; Hospital Administrator (CEO) small rural hospital, stock broker, medical recruiter and mortgage broker but they weren’t me! I finally found my fitted career – running a radiation calibration lab and working emergency management! Pays not great but I have a mission. Timelines, I teach radiation and help people in emergencies! I wake IP every day looking forward to the challenge instead of dreading it! I did my homework before I retired but listened to the wrong advice and lied to myself! It took awhile to find the civilian side of me!

    at #
  89. Great article and although you made some good points, I disagree on starting from the bottom. I have been a Human Resources specialist for two years and I am pursuing a degree in Human Resources management, so I am confident I have most of the skills and abilities that an entry level worker does not have. It all comes down to effectively communicating your expectations and understanding what the employer is expecting from you. The employee must also be passionate about what he/she will be doing rather than just looking at the pay and benefits. Money does not equal happiness, especially if one is doing a profession one hates so it is imperative to have interest in the position one is applying for and have all the qualifications.

  90. Sultan,
    Great article and spot on with your observations and advice. I am now approaching two years since my retirement after 26 years in the Navy, and your words could not ring more true. I have relationships with numerous current and former members of the military. The one constant I see in those that have made successful transitions is the ability to humble oneself to best prepare for life on the “outside.” Taking yourself down a notch or two makes every one of your suggestions look like a shining roadmap to future success. One must understand that their military career is an incredibly important life contribution to the service of their country, but it is still just a chapter of life in which experiences, relationships, and opportunities come at you faster than normal civilian life. Capitalizing on those experiences and capturing them in a well-written resume and interview preparation goes a long way in improving your odds of landing that first job outside the military. Approaching the entire process with confident humility makes you work harder and take nothing for granted. Thanks for a great article.

    at #
  91. Excellent article Mr. Camp! I have sifted through many of the comments made about this article and it is so unfortunate that so many are so thin skinned. All 9 points are right on target and the first argument is the best. If I had a penny for every time I had a senior officer trying to enter the civilian workforce insist based on their experience they should start at the top I would be fully retired by now. Mr. Camp’s statement is “generally” correct. Doesn’t mean everyone will start at the bottom but VERY VERY FEW will start at the top. My first job out of the Marine Corps was as a District Manager for a large retailer. Trust me, it happened by accident and only because I was fortunate enough to be interviewed by the right individual at the right time. Those transitioning individuals that belong at higher levels will get there fairly quick if they simply give it time. Those that think that corporate America owes them something and that they should start out at the “C” level will never get there. We know who they are as we met them in the military. Read and believe all 9 points of Mr. Camp’s article and then prepare yourself accordingly and you will have a much higher chance to succeed. Semper Fi

    at #
  92. Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You http://t.co/8rLGPdWVa2 via @CareerAttract

  93. Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You http://t.co/u7EpHfWihq via @CareerAttract

  94. Personally, I think you are vague and full of crap. Everyone has a different situation and have to adjust their goals based on current pending issues. My goal is to make money and I don’t care how I earn it. I see lots of wealthy people who made good money in the military. I went in with my education (MS/BS) and other skills in Lean Management. Quite frankly I made the easiest money while serving as an Officer. It is politics and at the end of the day, I had more liquid cash than people with flashy titles and their “house” or as they like to say “I am homeowner”. Please!

    at #
  95. This is a great article for common sense thinking but falls short on a few points.

    Retired military personnel transitioning to a commercial entity to learn something new will take advantage of any opportunity presented to them (if they desire it). However, your point on social media misses lots in translation…perhaps your business model does require social media to make money…we get that, but on the other side of this social media is a distraction to personnel’s performance. I think my staff plays on social media 4 hours out of their 8 hour day…yes (my fault), but in numerous government positions we have over inflated our mission requirements (not my fault–it’s what I’m given) which generates downtime that turns into unproductive time even if you have tons of training opportunities on standby to keep them busy. With everyone having smartphones…you can’t help but be distracted by them–I’m all for banning them in the workplace–unless they are company phones strictly for business use.

    As for the #2 comment of being over confident, perhaps you have had a perception from a few military personnel that we are too over confident…this may have some truth. Just to disagree a little, lets throw out some examples of why we have confidence:
    Things you don’t have to tell a senior/seasoned military person…
    1) How to operate a computer
    2) What is a due date–never have to handhold us through a task–we figure it out on our own with little assistance–or know how to ask the right people for assistance vice coddling in our cubicles like a typical graduate student waiting for you to come along to ask how’s it going?
    3) Dress, customs/courtesy around your clients, appearance & respect…ideals you don’t get from college grads…they understand the basics, but again while talking with you have their cell phone on during interview receiving text…you’ll get these goof-ups on young transition military, but senior people–VERY unlikely!
    3a) Yes…likely, we have led more people than your CEO, but we respect you are the boss and is why if sign us on your team, we’ll take you further than another
    3b) So yes, I would air on the side of a little confidence as long as I respected your position and you respected mine as a seasoned professional…but in this block you sound like you have an inferiority complex when we’re comparing resumes. We don’t!

    The military has given us a lot and if chosen to be part of your team, we don’t want to be disrespected with salaries or expectations from you provided a young 20 something. We want to challenged, be integral in your system/team on the 1st day, we deliver, and I can’t say that about younger professionals/college grads…and yes we have experience in this as well; we get young professionals/college kids (civilians & military)–all may not go to Stanford or Harvard, but come with growing pains
    This is why I’ve made this statement and disagree with your comment of over confidence–there is a reason we come across this way–ITS NOT DISRESPECT we EARNED IT.

    at #
    • In addition to your commenst – and I agree by the way – I wonder how many Steve Jobs or Bill Gates have not been hired because someone thought that that a spelling error or a misplaced comma was earth shattering?

      I can not imagine even one person who has NEVER made an error. Even if that paper was proof read by multiple people – it does happen!

      Catch my intentional spelling error?

      Did it REALLY make a difference in how you read this?

      But what the heck – toss that resume in the garbage – after all the low life that sent it in obviously did not care enough to proof read it and have several others do the same thing.

      Or did he?

      The arrogance of HR – makes me think of them as human resistance and not human resources.

      at #
  96. Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You, Sultan Camp explains why transitioners sometimes struggle when making the leap from milit google

    at #
  97. This article is a bunch of shit. Why don’t you go and serve your country and know what it feels like to be in that type of situation. You fucking people have no idea what we go through for your freedoms that you enjoy everyday.

    at #
    • I’m pretty sure the person who wrote this is a military vet. It says it at the bottom. I do agree, however, that it can be quite frustrating as a veteran job-seeker; sometimes it feels like your experience means nothing at all…

      at #
      • I think your attitude is why some vets dont make it. I once had the same attitude. Remember, its a transition, meaning change. You cant stay in the same zone because the rest of the world is marching on. You cannot think somebody who was never in the military is going to understand your service or do back flips for you. I rarely even mention my service anymore, its not what Im selling. It something I use to help me through tough times, but it s not paying me now. Skills and networking are. You have have to make your own way. Its called hustling and its what everybody is doing.

        at #
        • All well and good, if you have other things going for you. I joined the Army right at 18 and served in combat arms until I got out. So it’s pretty hard to not mention my military service. As for networking, most of the people I knew have moved on or are currently in the military. When I go to job fairs, I just feel more isolated than ever because I have NOTHING in common with any of the other people there, unless there are other 11 or 19 series veterans. It’s easy to say attitude is the issue, and I am sure that it is, but it’s rather hard to breach the close-knit, ultra-wary world of combat arms.

          at #
      • It is very frustrating, I retired in 2011, 32 years of service. I had to go to college for a degree since that is what the civilian work place is asking for, now I am at the age where I will not get hired for any type of career, maybe security. Besides the degree, I had a medical issue towards the end of college which required surgery. Now my limitations are drastically reduced. What is left for those of us disabled, have gotten older looking for work or getting prepared for the civilian work force?

        at #
        • Andrew, the corporate workplace does not like folks over 50, unless you know cyber security or other high tech specialty. Also, live in Norfolk and here in Virginia, Vets get hired, usually at the low end of the pay scale, because employers like the employee that does not need health insurance or a pension. Still, work is important to most of us and under-employment is miserable. I would suggest teaming up with another person (who does respect vets) and trying something entrepreneurial. A good friend of mine left Microsoft after 20 years because she could not stand the corporate BS another minute. She opened a doggie spa and daycare business because she identified a need and opportunity–she’s making a fortune and calling the shots–plus she loves dogs and their crazy owners. She knew nothing about this business when she started–but she did have a hunk of change from her departure from Microsoft. The entrepreneurial route has risk and you have to start small–but it’s the ultimate win–the money and the control of you own business.

          at #
          • I will have to disagree with you. I’m 52 and I got hired on just before I turned 50 because of my skills and experience with a major defense contractor and the navy for 20 years. You shouldn’t go telling people that they are too old for a job. If they are qualified, they will get it.
            I would personally hire a vet with years of experience over a college graduate that has none in a heartbeat.

            at #
          • Pete. age is a factor. Age can be overcome with great experience and a demonstration of being on your game and up to date. My husband has lost a job at age 55 and again at age 63 and he’s back at work! but it wasn’t easy and many of the jobs he interviewed for were filled by younger guys with less stellar resumes. Take my opinion as one source of input. There is no absolute in this game.

            at #
          • Agreed. Age will be a factor depending on HOW you spent those military years . Did you acquire skills? Did you take advantage of tuition assistance and finish your degree? I know many 50 somethings who were technicians – computers, intelligence, nukes – and are very much sought after well into their 50s. All those combat arms, alpha males who just wanted to drink, bully and be obnoxious are checking ID cards at the military posts if that.

            at #
        • Andrew, I would have to look at your resume. My first suggestion is something in the medical industrial complex. With 32 years of experience, assuming you enlisted at 18 or 19, your are in your mid 50’s and you have at least 10 years left in you to work, longer if you really end up liking your new career. One issue Vets need to get over is ‘your job significance depends on the number of people you supervise.” That is a very military model and not helpful to finding new employment.

          at #
    • I retired three+ years ago, and I think these statements can help some people get focused, if they don’t apply to you so be it. Looks like he should have added another reason vets don’t get hired, and that reason is, as your post implies, some don’t have an open mind and think everyone should be obligated to feel sorry for them and give them handouts; a perspective that personally embarrasses me. You also might want to clean up your vocabulary.

      at #
      • Absolutely agree. Veterans not victims is my creed. I served my country for 26 years but I did it by choice and I got well paid for it. Therefore, when I left the service ‘owed’ me nothing. Honor your service but live your life!

        at #
    • You misread the point of this article completely. He’s not hacking on veterans, he’s offering concrete advice on how veterans can improve their chances at a successful transition. He’s right. Veterans often mistake their own experience and accomplishments as being a trump card for civilian job prospects. He’s pointing out that while a military background can be an asset, it’s not free pass since you’re entering a new field, and you must manage your expectations. It’s good advice that will probably help a lot of vets transition more successfully into the private sector.

      at #
      • Maybe after WW2 Vet service and experience matched more closely the culture of 50’s organizations–but today, to the horror of many Vets, the corporate culture is pandering to the entitled generation which is comprised of ‘let others do the heavy lifting” …. Vets need to be ready for this element of many corporate cultures today. Caterpillar for example, contrary to what the CEO wrote in his book, is poorly run by ‘college graduates” who don’t really know what they are doing, to the chagrin of the shop floor employees, many highly skilled in the use of sophisticated automated equipment…. I ask, is that more or less like the military. At some point, there are upper echelon Pentagon guys who don’t know what they are doing. At what point are supervisors in touch with the guys on the line? How far up the chain beyond platoon leaders and squad leaders does the military leadership lose touch with the guys doing the work?

        at #
        • The military officer/enlisted model is a seriously flawed one. Officers will tell you that it’s reflective of the civilian blue collar worker/white collar exec model, but it isn’t. In the army’s case (at least where combat arms are concerned) the officers aren’t doing the hands-off executive work, they’re very much on the factory floor, involved directly in a hands-on way with the actual work being done. And that’s a problem. If you think of the factory scenario, you have the exec upstairs making strategic decisions and the guy on the factory floor who’s in charge is a veteran with years of experience doing the things he’s supervising others in doing. Well in the the military model, it’s the 20 year old college grad with no experience who’s on the factory floor supervising the hands on work.

          Besides that, an infantry platoon isn’t comparable to a factory floor. It’s more comparable to a professional sports team. The activities they do are in every way similar to playing a team sport (in fact, team sports are really just simulations of warfare). It takes the same sorts of physical training, demands team play and requires a group of people to physically act as one large body in order achieve its goals. It is a team sport – the ultimate team sport.

          Now, does the 20 year old college grad get to just waltz onto the field and assume the position of team captain just because he has a degree in English literature, having never played the sport a day in his life – taking over command of 30 veterans, some of whom have been playing this sport since before he was born? No, of course not. That makes no sense. His degree in English lit has no currency there, nor should it. The guy with the most experience and/or the most talent in the sport is in charge because his years of experience have qualified him.

          This is how an infantry platoon should operate. But instead, you get the 20 year old college grad taking charge because his degree in English lit has somehow entitled him to command.

          And why is it like that, instead of being like a sports team? Well it’s a holdover from the class system. Back in the olden days, when the class system was much more pronounced, the serfs/commoners would become the soldiers, and the nobility would buy their commissions (becoming officers) using their wealth and family name – often with little or no training, and in a lot of cases, the rank that a nobleman held was reflective of the amount of wealth he possessed. And it hasn’t changed a heck of lot since then. Being a “white collar” type person – that being someone with a degree – still entitles people to a higher station. That’s the reason why we have officers – it’s a holdover form that class system. Class-based privilege essentially.

          Now does an army need people with degrees? Absolutely, but only in the same capacities that a professional sports team does – financial officers, business strategists etc. Now the financial officer for the NY Giants may be more educated and probably comes from a better background than the quarterback, but his degree certainly doesn’t give him rank above the quarterback. Indeed, he’s lower in rank than the guy who’s spent years in the mission element, and who he’s there to support administratively (since that’s all his degree is good for when it comes to football).

          The same should be true of the military. Having a degree shouldn’t give you any status or privilege on the field in the mission element. It should be like a sports team where the guy who’s good at it is in charge, not some 20 year old college grad who’s never played the game a day in his life but he has a degree in English Lit. Of course it’ll never change, because it’s the officers who make those decisions and good luck convincing anyone to surrender their unearned privilege and entitlement….

          at #
          • Ham, my post above was describing EAXCTLY the flaw of the officer enlisted model. I”m not sure when this model predominated–likely after WW2 when college degrees became plentiful. The example of Caterpillar is exactly this flawed model you describe–college grads who know nothing about the production using sophisticated technology, evaluating and in many cases simply ‘changing” for change sake, a production process that is working well. I agree, the sports team model seems more accurate–injuries and all. You’r a little off, few college grads today have a decent degree like English Lit (which is actually requires a high degree of literacy.) And today, the college grad coming out of ROTC or a service academy often has a business, engineering or other technical degree–a rigorous degree. My son actually quit a Marine ROTC program when he realized the “model” would put him in charge of a platoon … when he in fact had no experience in the field. Some people in college have common sense. My other son, an engineering major, chooses aviation because the technical background is more suited to the job, he loves vehicles and is quick to learn anything requiring amazing phyisical and mental coordination. Plus, he loves the helicopter community (no so much the jets). Although he did play football four years, earn a wall full of awards for performance and teamwork, he does not assume to lead others with more expeirence. Again, common sense and a dose of humility. Andm btw, most college kids are 22 or 23 when they graduate from college. Ham, you sound very bitter like my brother who worked for Caterpillar on the shop floor for 20 years and was fired a year after he had a near fatal heart attack–for ‘forgetting” a step in a new job assignment after he returned from disability leave. The sadness in his case is that he is very smart and could have gone far in college –but never seemed to shake off his working-class 60’s anti-college attitude. I’ve watched this over the years and it just got sadder and sadder. He served in Vietnam and never was give the respect he earned. The fact that he had epilepsy but served in the Army anyway, seems evidence of the military’s callousness at the time (1970) and I don’t see much change. The important thing is for you the individual to realize life’s not fair in the civilian world either. A college degree, while not a guarantee, will help you out of the American society college–non-college social system. I have a bachelors and master’s degree and have the utmost respect–sincerely–for the sacrifices all of our vets have made. I know of many many college degreed people who are not smart and tend to be slackers–and have been given opportunities non-degreed peeople have not been given. Today, the number of low level degrees is ridiculous–a waste of money. Just be sure you have the facts and don’t exagerrate, the reality is bad enough and speaks for itself–you don’t need to embellish.

            at #
        • There was also the fact that post World War II it was rather difficult not to hire veterans. Such a large percentage of the population had served and come home (some returning to their old jobs) that companies were vet friendly by simple merit of the fact that veterans composed a healthy percentage of the work force.
          It is different now, when only a handful of people serve in uniform. Out of that handful (I want to say I saw 10% of American adults), only a barely 10% of the military serves in actual combat arms jobs. Which means that actual grunts make up a tiny percentage of the American population. I am not saying that this as an excuse, but it is important to remember the differences between post World War II and modern times.
          I have worked very hard to clean up my resume, present myself well and still cannot find a decent job in my area. Sure, I got offered a job at the local Circle K, but $9.50 an hour doesn’t even come close to paying my bills. I don’t expect a free handout, but given my resume, the fact that I am less than a year off from my degree and applying for fairly low level management jobs (assistant manager type positions), I’d like to at least get a chance.

          at #
          • Andrew, as a labor economist trained career development coach, I agree with your analysis that after WW2 it was hard ‘not” to hire a Vet, even though the war economy would slow down, there were houses to be built and washers, dryers and autos to be bought by newlyweds. I believe a large part of the Vet problem today is simple, those who served sacrificed those college years, so now they come home and compete with men (and women) who have finished college–sometimes ‘any” college will do. This is hugely unfair, but a reality. My son, finished two years of college then married his Ensign wife and he is stuck in a low paid job as the college hires advance around him. I’ m not saying you will have a huge surge of job offers when you complete your degree, but the degree matters. I would gladly help you with your resume and offer suggestions. I currently advise military spouses on education, careers and scholarships. I have almost 30 years of coaching experience, mostly in the private sector.

            at #
          • I’d very much appreciate any help. I think that some of it might be where I live too. I’m in a rural part of the country and leaving for ten years has put me well outside the good old boy network.

            at #
      • Good comment.

        at #
    • first, John Smith, Mr Camp’s his bio says he IS a veteran. Second, you make a generalized statement about young people, which is both inaccurate and widely untrue. While the media often paints them as unaware, self-entitled and oung folks today are a lot more aware and involved in politic, social issues and yes, the military, My nephew is a Navy CB, who aimed at his enlistment when he made Eagle Scout. Try telling him he doesn’t know anything. Third, you had better pray that you’re wrong, because, soon enough, they will be in control of our country, like it or not.

      at #
    • “You fucking people have no idea what we go through for your freedoms that you enjoy everyday.” “You fucking people…” Stop, let that phrase sink in for a moment. I am a vet of 16 years in the Army and this guy is spot on. Truthfully, vets have a more difficult time getting hired through me than most pure civilians. Why? Because sergeant doesn’t impress me. I know that an E8 is a manager and not a worker bee for quite some time. And senior NCOs are often illiterate. Many people get promoted because they stuck around and scored high on PT tests throughout their career. Sure we have been through hell, but you know how many people passed around that Army correspondence answers CD to get their military education promotion points maxed out? What we all need to realize is that we volunteered to serve our country and the people that didn’t volunteer don’t owe us shit. Our sense of entitlement is all in our heads and when you get out and get turned down for every job under the sun it is a stomping that freaking hurts. Now, upgrade your education for real, pay your dues in the entry level positions, and get some certifications on your belt and start competing with the people that didn’t volunteer and have been in this environment for the 20 years you were in the military. You know what you call those pussies?? Boss is what you call them. Yeah, suck it up and play the game. This article is spot on.

      at #
    • Mr. John Smith…please seek the assistance you need. You obviously have some unresolved issues.

      at #
    • Seems to me this article was perfect for you. Unpolished language, check. Self-entitled, check. Self-aggrandizing, check. Military enlistment, hun, at least in the U.S. of A., is voluntary. So, please stop feeling victimized because you ‘feel’ you went through “so much” for our “freedoms”. What kind of wimpy babble is that? Do you think you went through a lot in the military? Wait until you transition and join the corporate ranks – if you get to even do that – where they really expect production and appraisals will not be the blanket statements your rater jotted on your OERs.

      at #
  98. ah, the lovely asshole hiring manager on a power trip genre. Tragic to see it directed at *veterans*, of all people.

    at #
    • You misread him completely.

      at #
  99. Great article. I don’t know about the rest of you, but after 22 years in the military, I have no idea what to expect after retirement. Articles like thus are a grea way to find out about pitfalls of the job search process without the pain of first hand experience. Thank you Mr. Camp, and thanks for your service.

    at #
  100. Sultan,

    This article was hit the nail on the head. When you transition, unless you worked in finance, construction, etc. With a directly transferable skill set, that can be applied the very next day. You are starting over. It was a little hard for me to swallow early this year, but I know with 3 yes exp. It double because of my military exp. Just eat a little humble pie and it will pay off in the end with the right company and the right attitude. You should also use your network. Others left before you and they should be willing to reach out a helping hand. An employee referral is a valuable tool in finding your next job.

    at #
  101. I agree that these 9 reasons apply to some but not all. Having made the transition myself, it was up the list of most challenging things I’ve done. I think that some service members are unprepared simply because they don’t know how to prepare. There is no FM on going into the civilian business world. While the Army has ACAP and many other programs to help, it’s very easy for someone to really have no idea what they want to do and more importantly, how to go about it. Most companies I interviewed with on terminal leave could care less about teaching me about their business, they wanted somebody that already had leadership experience, since that is what really takes time to develop.

    at #
    • Here is the nuts and bolts of it, my father was 36 charlie ( army signal corps) s/ sgt in vietnam , after his military service 16 months in nam and 3 yrs army national guard, his was hired by the bell company as a apprentice lineman, only after convincing his employer he new his stuff, he has said many times people (civies) at the end of vietnam had a very bad additude towards the military, ( hippies) who dodged the draft were in charge as managers and loathed service members, and that has not changed in 50 years, in my opinion its worse, plus the military does not help matters when it paints its members as ptsd patients and mental disorders.

      • I have a brother in law that served in desert storm ( 3rd marines) after his service he tried for the same job in the civilian sector and was told ” no college, no job”, so he went to college, then was told his service time didnt matter, but his degree did, he has said, if he knew that, he wouldnt have wasted 4 years in the marines, and would have just went to college, he told my son who enlisted in the army unless you are a lifer, or in a real special field like spec ops, or nuclear engineer, or medical, military means nothing today to employers.

  102. After serving in the Air Force for 21 years and have 3 associates degrees, a bachelors degree, currently working on my MBA at Rutgers University and have 17 years of managing people and programs…..why should I start at the bottom? The problem appears to be with HR departments and hiring managers with the mentality that management in the military and in the civilian sector are two different things. I have managed more people than most senior executives in the civilian sector…..because I am not wearing the uniform any longer does not make my management and leadership skills rendered ineffective. I have been retired for a year now and have been on numerous interviews….I believe I am not being hired because the hiring managers (the people I will be working for) are intimidated by the experience level I bring and they feel threatened. I have considered dumbing down my resume and not speaking about my accomplishments during interviews because I have not been hired. I prepare and interview very well, but I am not being hired and that is the only thing I can think as to why. Hiring managers either are afraid of hiring an experienced manager who brings something to the table or they do not realize how valuable military people can be and minimize the experience they bring stating the civilian sector is different than the military. After reading your article, I find it very demeaning and you come across as an arrogant jerk. After dealing with many people in civilian jobs to include the federal government and how lazy many of them are….I scratch my head and ask myself how they ever got hired……and I have the feeling you are one of those……you probably were worthless when you served and were more of problem for your supervisor and you bitched and complained about everything that happened and got out at the first chance you had….you got a job because your buddy or frat brother got you in. I would like to see your numbers as a recruiter…..I bet they are not that great because if you talk to people like this as motivation….I do not see you doing that well. I was a very successful recruiter for 11 years for the Air Force and finished my career as a senior leader in recruiting service. If you have any kind of integrity you will respond to my comment, if not, my assumptions were correct……worthless, arrogant, jerk. I would never work for you……not even if you paid me a million dollars.

    at #
    • It would seem to me sir, that this article was written specifically to help people just like you. Yet, you attack the author pretty personally, questioning his service, and his ability to do his current job. Perhaps if you’d stop patting yourself on the back for how amazing your service was and focused on numbers one and two, you would land a good job that allowed you to prove your experience is relevant and gain the promotion to upper management you so obviously crave. The idea that you are such an amazing candidate that you intimidate all hiring manners, and that’s why you don’t have a job, is profoundly arrogant. And by the way, from somebody who has managed in the military, and now private sector, I can assure you they are quite different. Good luck to you though.

      at #
      • Last I checked through all of the management training, experience, and formal education in Management and Human Resource Management I have….. there were not two different sets of principles taught, one for military and one for the civilian sector. Management principles taught in academics apply to both sectors. Taking the role of a leader and/or a manager requires the same skill set and the application of the same management principles no matter what set of clothes you put on in the morning…..what you are saying is that a senior leader in the military who managed a 140 person shop of mechanics or 68 recruiters daily in a traditional business environment is not capable of taking on a management position in the civilian sector and that is not true. Yes, every organization is different that is obvious, but the management of people is not. No matter what job a person takes on, there is going to be a learning curve even if the person is making a lateral move to another company holding the same position because every company conducts daily business different….that does not mean that a person needs to start at the bottom as if he or she was 20 years old and has never held a job, that is insulting and for you, as a veteran, to discount 20+ years of work is just sad. That is why the unemployment rate of veterans is where it is because of mentalities just like yours and others. Yes, there are veterans who do nothing to prepare themselves for the transition. They do not further their education and do nothing to better themselves while they are in the military. However, there are many that do and spent the last 10 years of their military career raising families while they were completing their education..sacrificing all of their spare time to ensure they are taking the right steps to be successful….then they walk into the civilian sector and all of a sudden all the work they did is a waste because the civilian sector has a mentality that our skills “are ok” but they don’t match what we are looking for……….military members have always been viewed as second class citizens why should I have expected that to change over my years of service…it is the mentality that our skills are different in the civilian sector that prevents people from getting jobs. No acknowledgement is given for military experience by hiring managers. Being a veteran yourself I would think you would like to see other vets make the transition….and I find myself going back to my original thought I have dealt with many young people during their first and second term of service who all they did is complain about how much they hated the military and they were getting out as soon as they could, but then they did not have a problem taking advantage of all of those education benefits after they separated those people are the hiring managers now (yes, you are in this category). It is ok, that is why I served so people can burn the flag and the freedom to speak poorly about military members. I will get a management position shortly in human resource management and I will ensure that qualified vets get a fair shot and weed out the people in the organization who feel that vets do not have the required skills….of course you and I know that when I let them go it would need to be linked to job performance and I see some very poor performance by people who claim they are better qualified than the vets applying to those same positions. To see you, as a vet, talking down to a former military member that has served from the time I was 21 years old and I am now 43….its just sad…..I am the guy who spent the last 11 years of my career preparing for my retirement date. I don’t want to be a CEO of a company, I just want a normal job and be valued for the experience I bring to the organization and I should not be reduced to working at Arby’s (which is where I worked before I went into the military) after I have taken the proper steps to get my education and have 21 years of work experience to go with it. I’m not saying I am the most qualified candidate on the face of the earth, but I am just as qualified as any other candidate applying for the same jobs I am applying for…. I’m done wasting my time with you………you did not even deserve my time with this comment, but I just could not resist.

        at #
        • Danny, you haven’t a clue what you are talking about. First you personally insult the author, then whine about how great you are and attribute this obvious greatness to why you aren’t being hired. Someone who has BTDT comes along and offers you some advice and you then attack HIM and his service, once again claiming yours is to be exalted. And I think you were an air force recruiter and shop mechanic, from what I could understand in your poorly written, rambling screed. If that is the case, you where barely in the military, I don’t care how many years you served or how many wingnuts where on your sleeve.
          You then moved on to the fictional “management position in human resources” you seem to imagine is waiting for you, and how you will not only hire veterans, but also weed out non-veterans that don’t think like you do. Here’s a question for you: what role in “HR management” are you expecting? Are you going to be a recruiter, perhaps, to help facilitate the hiring of real veterans? Or a generalist, where you might have a hand in conducting exit interviews of employees, but will certainly have no ability to “weed out” employees who don’t think like you do. You claim all this education, including being an MBA candidate at Rutgers, but haven’t the slightest clue how a simple business function like a human resources department functions. I think we all know why you are unemployed. Good luck at McDonald’s.

          at #
          • This is awesome

            at #
          • Sorry about the marine thing above……..its just, whenever I heard condecending statement in the military, they were from poor marines. I respect the corp. I just hate your shit bags more than any other branches. We all have em, I just hated yours more. Nothing personal intended towards you.

            at #
          • Hey……we found his frat brothers. Lol. So a navel commander, pilot for 15 years, should start at the bottom with a boss who just got his aa in aviation a year ago? Or should he maybe be a lead flight instructor? Should a SEAL be able to latteral transfer to a team leader for a local swat team or should he start at the bottom being led by a 2 year vet of that team? A sergeant major of an admin battalion should start at the bottom as an assistant, or would his skill be better used as the office manager? When a gangbanger puts two in your chest you are obviously the people who would want a emt with 10 years experience over the combatmedic with 10 years experience and 5 deployments. Stupid choice in my book but thats murphys law. Never argue with an idiot. People watching might not know the difference.

            at #
          • Almost everyone but you has a 1 up 🙁 ahhh. How cute, he thinks he has a valuable opinion. Did mommy tell you that while you were takin out your pent up rage on your former commander? Lol. Just like a cop…you started out as a bullied teen. Poor thing. No wonder why you defend your corp. Jobs. You probably have nothing to be proud of in your military career. I knew mercenaries like you…..joined for college, picked something cozy, fought through your piss ant 3 years and ran back to your civilian life with your tail between your legs talkin about how you did your part. When in reality, your part was to create a mess. A mess that someone with TRUE military bearing had to clean up. He lasted 21 and is now transitioning, you lasted what, 3-5, and ran to your desk so you can sit on your corp. high horse and talk down to the guys who didnt give you the easy ride to your degree. Sorry you had to work in the military, but no…..your job cant be that hard. After all you didnt last doing a real difficult job. It is like a mcdonalds cook w 21 years experience talking down to military cook with 21 years experience. Cause you ran home after 3 years and worked at mcdonalds first, lol, of course its the more difficult job. And shot in the dark???? MARINE???? Lol

            at #
    • How self-righteous of you. This article is definitely for people just like you. FYI: Corporate America owes you nothing but a “Thank you for your service.” What have you ever done to make a company money? That’s the bottom line in the Corporate world–making money. Having transitioned myself and managed people in both the military and civilian sectors, I can tell you they are two very different things. In the military people love to call themselves “Directors”, “Project Managers”, and “Program Managers”, but those are a completely different caliber of job in the civilian world. For example, a civilian Director would be the equivalent to a Brigade Commander in the Army. In a civilian company if someone makes a bad decision and costs the company tons of money, people will lose their jobs and the company could fail. In the military, the taxpayers will usually end of footing the bill. Don’t automatically assume that because you have 21+ years of military experience and have managed people that automatically positions you for a management career in corporate America. That just isn’t the case. Realizing this is one of the first steps in a successful transition. Believe me. I’ve been there. If you don’t want to, that’s fine as well. Totally up to you.

      at #
      • dude spot on, READ THIS AND TAKE HEED, ITS THE REAL

        at #
      • Well said!! See I am a veteran myself that served 15 years in the Army and I had to learn the hard way as well. Leaders in the military manage groups of people (soldiers) who had been indoctrinated and had been mentally conditioned that anyone with higher rank is the boss and that they should always obey and comply with regulations. However, at the other end with civilians this work different. You no longer can get loud and recommend UCMJ action if they don’t obey. You are pretty much powerless unless you have learned the companies culture and have enough academic credentials (MS degree preferred or MBA) but as me and you know the average leader in the armed forces do not go to school to obtain their education. Therefore once they get out from being an E-7 or E-8 now they go back down to the bottom of the chain and that is a hard bullet to swallow.

        Ron at #
    • management in the military and the private sector are 2 different things unless your a civilian gov type. Sorry I cant remember learning the PMBOK in Military leadership school, but then again I wasnt an officer. I agree that the author missed the mark, but for a different reason. The private sector is about making money, the public sector is about spending it. Its that simple and that requires different approaches. I once inflated my resume, as instructed by a civilian GS 9 or whatever it was during my transistion assitance will all kinds of crap about how I had saved the gov so much money with some action I had done. In reality I knew nothing of how easy I had it. My housing and utilities were covered, and the building utilities labor etc were covered during my military career. None of that is covered in the civilian world, those are liablities. What these career counslers or whatever they are called need to tell people is that its pretty simple. you need to be able to offer something the organization or company can use, be an asset. Learn PM, hard back office skills front office skills, retail etc. Thats what makes it all go around.

      at #
    • I appreciate what you have to bring to the table. While I think the author had some concrete advice (and it was a tough pill to swallow), I understand why someone, at some point, wouldn’t want to negotiate and sell themselves short. For instance, I’m an Air Force vet myself who has an AA, a BS, and an MBA. During the recession of 2009, I did mock interviews and was told that even though I did very well, mentioning I had a child could cause me not to be hired (supposedly because the hiring manager would think I was more prone to taking time off). At first I accepted this advice, but then I thought about it and came to the conclusion that I’m tired of trying to censor my own life just so I don’t offend someone. I’m a parent, and it’s not a crime, and I don’t particularly want to hide it. I decided that if an agency didn’t want to hire me BECAUSE I was a parent (even though most people are), they were a poor cultural fit for me, and I didn’t want to work there anyway.
      I think that’s what you are trying to say, that an agency that would make you dumb down your resume and not appreciate tangible skills would be a poor cultural fit, and maybe they are. I’d recommend to keep looking at what’s out there, particularly on a niche professional site like usajobs.gov. You’ll find something. Good luck.

      at #
    • Yes guest, they are intimidated by you, but not for all the reason’s you list. I coach Veterans and help them find positions that are not always posted and I would hesitate to spend too much time with you. I feel you need a full time coach to help you through your issues so your vast experience can be best utilized. I have worked in corporate outplacement for ten years and for you Mr. Guest, I would require at least a year long program of full time outplacement services. God bless you.

      at #
    • Mr. Camp is not being a Jerk. I’ve been through the ringer with my career change because I too have been resistant to the fact that my credentials are worth nothing until I prove myself in a Company’s Culture. Sometimes I feel like my undergraduate degree has amounted to just another line on my resume.

      at #
    • right on!

      at #
    • I wholeheartedly agree with your sentiment. While I think that the original intention of the author who wrote this article was in the spirit of trying to help veterans, it does come across as demeaning and arrogant. In my experience doing years of outreach and working with the surrounding community as an ambassador of the Navy, I find that many people have negative perceptions about military personnel based simply on movie stereotypes and lack of education.

      at #
  103. I found this to be a great article. I am currently in the US Navy, and I understand the hardships that military members go through. Companies today are looking for more than to fill a position, they want employees that are going to contribute to their future advancement. The civilian sector is under no obligation to hire veterans, and in fact I don’t believe they should unless that veteran can prove to be asset. This article enables veterans to properly prepare themselves for a job based on their skills and knowledge, not simply because they wore a uniform. A veteran who truly deserves a job should not accept a handout position, and an employer should expect a veteran to be able to work just as hard for a job position as a non-veteran. Also, veterans have no excuse for not bettering themselves while they are on active duty. There are so many resources that are available for free such as certification programs, college, resume preparation. The veterans that complain are the ones who were lazy while on active duty to take advantage of the resources available. Employers know what resources veterans have, and they should and do expect veterans to take advantage of those resource before applying for a job.

    at #
  104. Great article, highly relevant and informative feedback. Thank you for offering your POV. If the reader’s goal is to push his/her pride and baggage aside, and use an open mind to help themselves to a good start in the next phase of their professional life, then they should be grateful. I appreciate the frank delivery…. I can’t imagine that there are any senior military officers out there who start the next phase of their professional life still “wearing shoulder boards”.

    at #
  105. I really enjoyed reading the article and the information was very useful. Thanks for sharing!

  106. Obviously this post shares some hard answers that some of us don’t want to believe is truly reality. However, one of the commentators asks “what have we done for Corporate America, how have we affected their bottom line?” This is most easily summed up by looking at ISIS. If we, the 1% of America who have served on the frontline weren’t willing to sacrifice our time, talent, and lives for keeping our way of life for free, so Corporate America can continue to function, worry free, no religious police shutting down your doors, no enslavement of our children and women, etc.. So next time someone asks what has your military service impacted, you can say, “I have kept America, America.”

    at #
  107. Former green beret thinks we all want sympathy. Lol. Fuckin silent proffesional my ass. Do you just troll job sites talkin shit under that screen name hoping some NG privates gonna jump through you monitor and suck your asshole?? Or wait….your chris kyle- matt bassonete material. Silent but loud, proffesional but disgracfull to your team…….you could wear a fucking solid gold beret with diamonds like the elton john blowing bitch you are, but to claim some just want hand outs. Man, I dont know how you made it in the army shit talking your commrades like that. Its disgracfull…..worse than chris kyles lies in his books, or the two glory hounds from seal team six bragging about shooting bin ladin. Its not silent (which your shitty opinion should be) or proffesional. You should have joined the russian military. They would like your brutal anti team mentality.

    at #
  108. I agree and witness this all the time with veterans. While in the military we are not required to write a resume to get a job, you get a set of orders and move on and then told what your job is while at that unit. Yes, I have seen most of these things played out except for the thank you letter, which I don’t doubt happens, I don’t get to see the letter/e-mail.
    The one I would like to address is the “You don’t know what you want to do” that is huge. Again in the military you don’t have to worry about that one, you are given plenty to do. What would your advise be for veterans that are in that predicament?

    at #
  109. #10 Less than 1% of our country has served. You won’t be hired because they resent your service.

    at #
  110. “5. You Don’t Have a LinkedIn Profile (Or, Even Worse, It’s Not Complete)”
    “6. You Think Social Media Is For Kids or Sharing War Stories”

    Many veterans will never have a social media account because most of them a security conscious a wish to not post there clearance work on the internet for obvious reasons… This is a stupid reason NOT to hire someone if you ask me.

    at #
  111. It was disheartening to read many the negative feedback from vets disagreeing with the main points of articles pointing out resume and interview tips. I sense the Career and Alumni Programs from each Service is falling short of preparing vets for the transition from “boots to wing tip shoes”. The transition of coming from a directionally charged structured organization is difficult and confusing where one followed a strict social structure and obedience to orders is the rule or pay a stiff penalty for straying. This is a far cry from joining an organization where the social culture evokes non-disciplinary behaviors and rewards performance for innovation and creativity. To quote Welch, on how he turned around GE by upgrading his talent, “too many war horses that aren’t good enough at second level, that kill our values with their old school thinking.” Veterans need to embrace this mind set that what worked in the military is the anti-thesis in Corporate America.

    at #
  112. The point is simple. Companies have jobs we as vets want.

    I (a male vet) was speaking with a fellow vet the other day and she said that she was looking for a place to develop a career and not just a job. I like that. She is right we had careers that spanded a vast array of “jobs”.

    I have been through each phase of the comments I have just read. I believe the simple answer is you have to keep knocking at the door. It is FRUSTRATING, but you have to and it is hard. Berating companies or companies berating vets is not RIGHT on either part!

    There are so many issues that keep companies from hiring vets and so many issues vets have with the way companies hire vs what they say they want to do to help vets. I think for most vets a company’s culture reflects its people. If the people of a company say they want to hire vets and then put every obsticale in the way of hiring vets that is one thing, and if the guidance to vets is changing every 10 seconds and companies don’t place some of the burden on themselves to ask veterans themselves why they are not coming to their companies to seek employment or stop to really listen; OR, worse, don’t recognize the vets skills either implicitely or explicitely, then both the vet and the company share responsibility, not BLAME, in working to create a strong bridge to cross the chasm.

    I have seen more companies using the NEC/MOS process to try to match jobs, But, these are very limiting. I have 3 NECs from the Navy (8432, 8404 and 0000). But, they do not tell the story of my experience in total only what I am trained to do. I spent 4 years managing a Surgical Support Team as a (0000/8404) including serving as the team’s training and administrative manager. I reported to a nurse and physician responsible for assuring that the team (12 junior Corpsman, myself, the nurse and the Dr.) were 100% ready to deploy in as little as 12 – 48hrs any where in to globe to support a Surgical Team in response of humanitarian or combat medical conditions. At the time I was a (0000/8404 HM). Similar roles involved being a supervisor that assured medical records QA, program management for over 26 difference occupationa health and safety programs, leadership of groups from as small as 12 to as many as 350+ people? I have also taught, A&P (Anatomy & Physiology for a community college) in support of associate programs regarding nusing assistants, 2 year nurses, and other healthcare roles. I also have experience in EMRs first pioneered by the military in systems likes SAMS or CHCS.

    So, what would I need to do to work as a EMR or General Health Records Program Manager. I completely understand the IC-9 system and am familiar with the increased expansion of the ICD10 system. And have a Bachelors in Enviromental Health.

    Again, it about building a sold bridge that does not force the vets to swim in a mote of sharks (been their – done that!); rather, a bridge that offers recognition for skills, experience and other intangible assets. It takes courage, vets have, and courage companies need to have, to provide a way for all to see opportunity for both going forward.

    Don’t get me wrong, I could rant, but I’d rather offer solutions. I have always been a problem solver and frankly I like solving problems when empowered to do so, but leaders with the courage to empower me and the wisdom to guide me have to say they are looking for such relationships. I have to admit, this is rare, but perhaps someone will say who is that manager, COO, CEO, etc.needs a multicultural, multidimensional, critical and creative thinking problem solver who has a long view for sustainable success and who is not affraid to try and fail and try again and succeed under the right leader.

    There is so much work we need to get done, it is time we consider the words of Mahatma Ghandi – “My imperfections and failures are as much a blessing from God as my successes and my talents and I lay them both at his feet”. For the Senior Managers, CEOs, COOs, CIOs, CTOs and others go have some coffee with vets. Get out of your suits and off the golf course and have real (not tweeted or FB conversations) with these real people. If that takes all day, OK! We are not perfect people, only people who want to do the best we can in an environment that cares. Vets don’t want sympathy, rather they want opportunity.

    Everyone please quick talking and do something. Hire, train and care honestly for a vet! They want a hand up – NOT a hand out!!!

    at #
    • Well I’m a combat veteran of the Marine corps of five years seeking a job at this point of my life. Right now I’m sitting here drinking a beer reading all this garbage talk towards the guy. You know you can just tell the minor enlisted vs the senior enlisted vets on this page by the attitude.
      This an actually just inspired me. I can admit that at least six of the nine things he said we do wrong, I do. I can’t speak for the Navy, Air Force, or the Army, but in the USMC we take corrections as a gift. So I raise my beer to you Sir! Not everyday an employer reaches out to us and gives us tips. I apologize for the actions of my fellow vets. So you gotta job for me? Lol

      at #
      • Another thing a lot of people hadn’t mentioned….had they thought of applying for veteran-centric places, such as the Veterans Administration, DoD, Dept. of the Army, etc? These places are all over usajobs.gov, and about as close to the military structure as you can get (without actually being in it). I’d think that would make the transition a little easier than going straight to the corporate world, unless someone just has their heart set on that.

        at #
    • You missed the mark completely. “vets dont want sympathy, they want an opportunity” “hire, train and care honestly for a vet” Yeah right, you show you know nothing about biz. Why should anybody hire a vet just because they are a vet? Ok, Im for hiring a vet, but once she/he comes on board, now what? You got to think about the biz owner. When they hire somebody, its a risk. Your there to make them money, nothing more or less. Your status as a vet or MBA grad isnt relevant. Its what you can do. So theres where you missed the mark. Flip that script. What can you do for the organization? You got letters of reference, showing how hard you worked? do you have the certs they want? If he ask you a question about your craft, can you answer it? do you have the stamina to put in long hours of commitment and sacrifice? Have you paid your dues, like working in a call center, retail, service truck or do you have a skill like ebiz, networks, web design, front office type skills they can use? I mean with kids nowdays who are whiz at this stuff, you best be on your game. So what if they say no. Thats where your military training comes in, you adapt and overcome. Basically what Ive seen is they want somebody with guts and will get the job done, so they make money. aka your an ASSET. All this about train me or hire me. Why? what you have to offer that they cant find on any corner. What they want is that you paid your dues in the sector your applying for. I mean, military training does help, really it does, but civi world is quite different than gov world. This is where I had to change up my mindset, and its the same all over the world. get the experience and skills and love work, youll get hired.

      at #
  113. Thank you Sultan. This was an extremely insightful article. I
    would like to also thank you for your service which seems to be an important
    factor that some other veterans leaving their comments seem to be missing. I’ve
    recently just left the Army after nine years and I have to say that I am
    the epitome of number 1 and 2. After nine years of frankly working my
    ass off and rising through the ranks, having accomplished and earned so much in
    that time, I find it hard to accept the fact that I am back in the 9th grade
    and it’s my first day of high school all over again; I am nobody. It’s even
    harder to accept this fact when throughout my entire military career I was
    constantly told that, “I am a 1%er,” “I have gained valuable leadership skills
    that would be a great asset in any industry.” Of course in retrospect these words
    were simply a retention tool, used to get us all motivated and willing to do
    another six years. I should know, I was a Career Counselor my last three years.
    Obviously, I took them the wrong way because I then found myself in ACAP
    classes and looking on websites that support Veteran employment, all of them telling
    me that “I [as a Veteran] am a cut above the rest.” That, “I
    have an advantage to the average civilian in the workforce.” Is it any
    wonder then that we are groomed to have an exceptionalist mentality? I AM
    Unique, but not in a good way as the connotations of the abovementioned people
    would leave me to believe. The truth is that I am unique because I am a
    liability.

    at #
  114. As a current active duty Navy sailor with nine years in, there are certain things that I agree and disagree with about this article.
    First and foremost, a majority of this information is actually good information. One should definitely know how to properly prepare a resume, and properly interview for a position. With that being said, and with some of the comments I have seen on here, I can guarantee you, that if you vets walk into a civilian interview with a “my shit don’t stink” attitude because you have been in for 20+ years, you won’t be hired. Think about it this way, you get an 18 year E-7 walking into your command after a PCS (leader or not), and he decides to turn the place upside down immediately, and preach to everyone how awesome he is. Are you going to respect him? Or are you going to want to boot him right out the front door?
    Point being.. a little bit of humility goes a long way.
    On the flipside, pertaining directly to this article, I can also understand where some of these comments come from. This gentleman does, in fact, come off as a little arrogant himself. Also, please remember, that this is only ONE perspective, out of the hundreds of thousands of companies in the country. I definitely wouldn’t put all my eggs in one basket with this point of view, and you shouldn’t either.
    For example, as this man may use social networking on the regular to recruit, it is unrealistic (at least at this point in social media development), to believe that “most” companies out there will primarily use social networking to recruit. As great of a resource it is, and can be for the business world, not all companies use it. Keep it as an option, but again, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. I seriously doubt your job outlooks will be significantly affected by your use (or lack of use) of social networking. But hey, when I get around to retiring, that could all be different, so I guess I should keep my options open as well.
    Folks, plain and simple. I am a 9 year Hospital Corpsman in the US Navy. I am looking at doing my 20, and moving on to a new career, as I will most likely not be interested in the medical field any longer. So I will have to ultimately plan to start a new career. For a person like myself who has been through numerous civilian interviews and jobs prior to the military, I can tell you that your attitude, and your ability to be humble are going to make ALL the difference in the world.
    Keep an open mind. And remember, us service members are definitely not entitled to anything more than we already have. I would prefer to be known as a hard worker, rather than a veteran that just had everything handed to him anyways. I actually think I would be doing my Navy a disservice if I went out to the civilian sector, with Navy Retired under my name, and walk around like my shit doesn’t stink. I would rather be known as that hardworking prior Navy sailor, rather then that lazy retiree that doesn’t contribute to the company and sits around and tells war stories all day.

    at #
    • dude your talking the same jive that everybody says, “Im doing this in the military but I wont do it when I get out.” Your going to do whatever hustle you have to do to make it. And in many cases the hiring manager looks at your resume and if you worked in medical then thats where you go. Then you go to school at night or you try out a new career, from the bottom, you swallow your pride and you transition. If your still active duty, you dont even know what your going to do.

      at #
    • and all that about “humbe” and “open mind” yeah thats all easy to say but youll see how it is. What you and other vets need to do is learn how to HUSTLE. I mean work, get the spirit, and love work, I mean like horrilbly long hours and travel and sacrifice. Thats what its about. Its not about somebody giving you something for nothing, some free training or school. Its about work/reward. I seen guys who would not been good military types but they could work like you wouldnt believe, they had the spirit. Ive also seen reitrees who were absolutely worthless, I mean the biggest douches youd ever meet, and where did they land their job? As a gov civilian. You got to transition, to the free market and think like that.

      at #
  115. This is best article you have share with us about career.. I got an interesting information from here.. Thanks for this awesome sharing..

    at #
  116. I think he missed a very real and often overlooked point: The military is public or gov sector, most of the civilian world is private sector. Yes, many organizations are set up like the military in some ways with their management style, but the business world rewards effort, politics promotions etc are not that emphasized, at least in my experience. If the private sector biz operated like the gov, I can guarantee you there would be no biz sector or economy. The public sector or a military sector simply operate in 2 entirely different ways. I must admit, in some units I served with, waste was just how things were done. We didnt care if we trashed something because we didnt have to, we got paid by taxes and appropriated funds. Things dont work that way in most companies, theyll go bankrupt. They are constantly striving to beat competition, exploit new opportunities, etc. Its a tough exisitance, and the military simply isnt that kind of organization. The military (depends on branch) does offer an edge or perseverance that many young civilians dont have. But I think that is somewhat overated. Many civilians work much harder than I ever did in the US military. Civilian world isnt a 9 to 5 job, do my duty and Im good. For example If you want to be a Chef, thats some tough hours and if you want to make it big, you got to travel and make your own way. Its not like somebody will pay everything for you. You got many others who made their way out in some crappy enviroment and they wont have any sympathy for you. Then you got service side industry with its marketing, sales, service, call center management and all that. There is no sales in the military, unless your doing some car wash for charity. I mean this isnt deep stuff here. I really think allot of transistional assistance gov civilians miss the mark. The class I attended back in the day did absolutely nothing for me, it was a joke led by some career civilian gov type employee. If your going to work for the gov or a contractor, or even in the trades, then yes it can help, but for a real biz, sorry that aint how it works. This isnt to slam on the military, but its to help vets and retirees transition. Anyway, many GI bills pay like room and board now I guess and stuff like books and perks we never got back in the day, so there really isnt any excuse for vets who get that benefit to be complaining. You can get out and get that free education and get your MBA and intern. Dont expect to get a shoulder to whine on from a civilian; many had it much harder and are paying off student loans. Its a hustle, and I like it but it aint no easy ride.

    at #
  117. This article is kind of a mash up between advice for senior and junior folks looking to transition. While a few points of advice are worthwhile like the thank you letter, and preparing for an interview, the rest, for me, totally missed the mark. Here’s the thing, there is nothing wrong with refusing to start at the bottom of an organization when you have the education and experience to back it up. I transitioned from the Army roughly two years ago with a Bachelors, masters and 12 yrs of transferrable experience. I was senior enlisted, previously held a technical job in the military, and starting at the bottom just wasn’t an option. My first job out of the military was an Assistant Director. To tell someone with the education and skills that they should accept entry level and aren’t unique is ridiculous. Your sole purpose is to sell yourself, your skills, and your personality as to why you are a good fit for the organization. You NEED to stand out in order to get hired. Some job boards work, some don’t. It’s the same for civilians. The great thing about prior military is that we’re used to starting over, we move around a lot and get thrown into uncomfortable situations only to learn how to be comfortable super fast. Resilience in itself is a selling point that you need to make known to your future employer. What I’ve found more than anything is with education and the sheer amount of experience one receives in the military versus our civilian counterparts, is that we’re often OVER qualified for positions. Don’t settle. Seek out positions that accurately match your experience. My opinion is most civilian organizations have a hard time understanding the similarities between the military and major fortune companies.

    at #
  118. You and me both. I sure hope they can invent a way someday to stop making claims decisions that last >4 years or some other ridiculous shit like that (but that’s a conversation for another thread).

    at #
  119. This is an awesome writeup. Being an active duty soldier with a Juris Doctorate, My biggest fear in life is still that of being unemployed or overqualified. I can attest that some of these issues are true. My resume is probably longer than the CEO’s and i need to fix that.

    at #
  120. At World IT Solutions we support our Veterans! Interested in a career in IT ? – Connect with our recruiters and Visit our website at http://www.worlditsolutions.com to learn more!

  121. Do what I did. Spend 15 years in the Army, see everything there is to see, get out and finish your degree (with good grades of course), go to graduate school, work a few internships, and walla! Mil experience (particularly leadership and management skills, check!), education (check!), and real life experience (double check!). I’ve found that more than anything having reputable experience interning whether paid or unpaid is vastly valuable, and apparently under utilized.

    at #
  122. I wish I would have read this article about a month ago. I currently transitioning from the Army and although I have a set of transferable skills, I am definitely lacking in the resume writing area. I had the very long chronological resume. Since I began actively interviewing, I have learned that I need several different resumes and ones that are more detailed and technical. I bombed my first interview because I was not prepared for what they were going to ask me. Since that interview, I have been writing down what I am going to say and practicing practicing practicing. One company has already said they are ready to give me an offer the other one I should hear back from on Friday or Monday. In the mean time, I have prepared my thank you letter. I have also excepted the fact that I to lower my expectations because as the article said we military folk do have a hard time starting over. Awesome article sending it to everyone I know that is transitioning.

    at #
  123. In my opinion a well written and informative article. However, this is dealing with tactics, if you want to succeed in civilian life after your military career you need to adopt a far more strategic approach. How do I know? Because I failed miserably!

    I left the British Air Force as a senior officer (wing commander) in 2007 and thought I would smash it in civilian life. How wrong I was! Many off the comments on this thread resonate with my experience.

    It wasn’t until 5 years later in 2012 that I realized that if I wanted to succeed in civilian life I had to be A CIVILIAN!! I had rear view mirror syndrome real bad. Everything about the Air Force was great and civilian life was s**t!

    Sorry but that does not serve you. Honor your service but live your life. You joined of your own free will and got well paid for your service. Your country owes you respect for your service but nothing more.

    If you truly want to transition to civilian life ( and many don’t) then you must change your mindset and your self image first. Details come later. I learned that the hard way before I turned my life around.

    If you are interested in the story of my transition check out http://armedforexcellence.com

    at #
  124. Don’t think just because you served your country that you are owed a job when you leave the military. You volunteered and got paid cry baby.

    at #
  125. You asked for a Chaplain? Here i am! 😉

    at #
  126. I had some issues with vernacular when I first transitioned and had to get my duties and such civilianized. Indeed, I had to say I’ll take anything as I had a wife and two children. They did not have Social Media in 78 and 82 when I mustered out and graduated college.

    I was hired by one man only because he knew me as he considered Vets to be inflexible. If you would see my LinkedIIn profile, I have been anything but inflexbible because I took whatever I could get to raise that family.

    Now, I am seeking something I want, but many consider me too old and yet I am as active, if not more, as when I was 35. Just keep looking and listen to some of the author’s suggestions. They are reasonable.

    at #
  127. All logical points. If you disagree, imagine you are the hiring manager, your job is on the line to find the most qualified person to help the organization to get the job done. From that perspective, do you still think you came off as the most qualified candidate that was interviewed? Less likely if you broke one of the 9 rules and someone else did not. He may want to hire you, but feels blocked by how you presented yourself.

    at #
  128. Part of the problem is the military has some very odd ways of doing things, partly by necessity and partly because they don’t want to change. We have skills when we exit but often we haven’t kept up with our civilian counterparts in keeping up with how things are done “on the other side”. Consequently when we exit, we have skills but they are from 5 years ago. Companies hire for tomorrow.
    Another issue is why should any company hire you, a 38 year old exiting/retiring military member when they can hire a 22 year old, straight outta college kid. He’ll settle for less, not knowing any better. His work history is Acme Pizza in college but I’m the guy who has led men and has 20 years of solid work history.

    at #
  129. I read this article for two reasons; to see if Mr Camp knew what he was talking about (he does) and to see if he mentioned everything (he doesn’t). So here’s my two cents… There are four areas that job seekers must learn about and be experts in, resume writing and tweaking, networking, interview skills and salary negotiation. Most veterans in their base/post transition programs get, at most, resume writing and maybe some interview tips. Not enough! In my opinion the most important of all those is NETWORKING. It is a term most of you will grow to hate until you learn how to do it. The major reason you may not get hired is that you are an unknown quantity. Hiring authorities of management positions do not hire unknown quantities (very often). How do you get to be a known quantity? NETWORKING!! Unfortunately transitioning military do what they have always done. They put in their 110% until the day they go on terminal leave, then they say, “Now where’s my high paying civilian job?” Big mistake, 6 months to a year prior to getting out you should’ve started networking. There are many avenues for networking, chambers, business groups, your church, kids sports teams, community service, scouting etc. Most successful business people give back to their community by serving on various non-profits or other volunteer positions, you meet important people doing this.

    NETWORKING is nothing more than the cocktail party scenario of meeting people. Do not fall for the “Speed Networking” groups, there is no such thing a speed networking. NETWORKING is relationship building, you don’t do this at Mach one. Make the person you are meeting the focus and learn about them. Exchange cards and meet them later for coffee, see if you can help them. Eventually they will ask if they can help you, now let them know you are in transition. I used to say I was an operations management consultant doing research on the Tampa Bay market. You’ve told them you’re unemployed without laying any guilt on them. When you meet them for coffee ask if they know who you should be talking to, to get info on ops mgmt positions. You must NETWORK all the time. The time you spend on job boards is wasted time, you are applying for jobs that rarely exist and you are giving your email address to people who will spam you to death.

    NETWORKING, NETWORKING, NETWORKING is key, learn it, do it, make tons of friends, get hired.

    Bill Moline is a former Vietnam helicopter pilot and retired USAF LtCol fighter pilot. After 23 years of service he worked in various positions, the most important of which was with the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. After leaving the chamber he worked for about ten years as a career advisor and was certified as a Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) and Global Career Development Facilitator (GCDF).

    at #
  130. This article really says, most Vets don’t get the job for the same reasons most civilians don’t get the job. The major difference is point one, starting over–and ‘maybe” on the starting over! No great revelations here.

    at #
    • Sage comments. you know a lot. A lot of these guys need to understand that they need to LISTEN to people who will help them. It IS a change. An old friend once summed me up pretty well -hadn’t been out of USN two years yet-“He hasn’t lost his collar brass yet.” He sympathized-had been in the Army and a retired NYPD cop: “Took me about two years to lose my shield.” He was a good friend, and someone I actually took guidance from, as it was empathetic and well meant. There are many pitfalls in the civilian world that do not exist in the military. While many won’t agree, and there are plenty who don’t-most people STILL have to follow the rules-at least some of them sometimes! Civilians? They make their own rules! I worked for the same guy for ten years-then for three females in a year and a half(!!?)-sad to say, the first was the poorest excuse for a human being I ever met, the second was a nice lady, but had no business supervising ME-I was better qual’ed than everyone in the office but the director-and the atmosphere for males there was just TOXIC-third woman-capable and smart and nasty-this was 2007-she used to brag “I came from Wall Street”. A few months later, that was like saying “I worked in a house of ill repute.) Then I worked for another guy for 4 1/2 years, then another YOUNG woman for a year-who LISTENED to me and another older worker-and appreciated our quiet advice. (Still friends) Then I had Melanie. How do you get a job that pays $125K without even an associate’s degree? Answer: be nice looking and charming and DISARMING, and be a real killer. (I’ll hold back any comments about “unnatural acts”.) She beat me with a buckle for a year while my mother was dying, and gave me the WORST evaluation I have ever received. However, I didn’t take that crap when I was in the Navy, and I don’t take it now. I rebutted it, and gave a copy to my COO, and the following workday, I was transferred to another dept where I now have the BEST boss I ever had!! (She was lived. She can drop dead, BTW.) Best thing-she started in on her other generalist, and finally the head shed realized it wasn’t us, and she was told to find something else. Behaved VERY unprofessionally at the end, and was walked out by the lady she was trying to fire!!My point-it’s a jungle out here-but if you do your work and try to be professional at all times, and learn from people who have been there, things should go okay. Epilogue-Melanie went to another firm where MY COUSIN is a Sr VP and Dep General Counsel. I notified her immediately. You never know who others know!!

      at #
  131. OK, the single biggest difference I find between vet job seekers and civilian is their concept of the resume. The resume should include mostly what you can do for the employer based on experience and little about the command structure in which you performed your duties. Military resume’s start out longer because of the command structure issue above and the emphasis on “credentials” in the military and for documenting every nuance of the job–instead of documenting results. But, a similar issue exists for my engineering job seekers and worse. Then there are the academicians who list a bazillion publications but don’t catch on that they also need to emphasize their grant acquisition track record–who would of thunk. Again, there are a few unique issues to the Vet job search, but most reasons you didn’t get hired are the same for civilians and vets.

    at #
  132. This is a good article and right on. Many of us who served for decades never had to write a resume or practice for a job interview. The transition points, when I went through did not help me a bit. I am from Illinois and went to Fort Knox. Colleges have some type of employment assistance and most jobs are part time. Fromm what I went through, many organizations do not recognize military experience or training. It does seem like military experience means nothing, especially when job seekers express it.

    at #
  133. I went on an interview last week for an entry level IT help desk position. I performed 6 out of 9 items on Mr. Camp’s list. I sent in a thank you note, but I didn’t ask for the job. Today I’m going to run to the nearest college and have an English professor look at my resume. I’m going to open up a Twitter account. I’m one of those to who don’t like the whole social media thing, but my friend gets all the latest news before I do. I even didn’t want a LinkedIn account, since I got it I’ve received more prospects and met some cool people already. This is a great article I’m going to read it over, over. Soldier for life.

    at #
  134. It’s funny that the comments went from a critique of the article to a critique of John Smith’s (really?) comment. Yes.. frustrations abound. For any individual looking for work… not finding it is perhaps the most infuriating thing you can experience. You can only take so much ‘advice’ and ‘here’s how I did it’ stories before you blow a gasket. This job search isn’t like anything many vets have experienced. You can beat the enemy, max the rifle range, call in a precision air strike, run an HR department or manage a warehouse and get awarded, promoted, slapped on the back and see feel accomplishment. But if you feel you are doing everything right in your job search… the right resume, clothes, handshake, studied the company profile, had a stellar interview, wrote the ‘thank you’ card… and still nothing to show for it is absolutely the most teeth grinding, smoke from the ears, belittling feeling you can have. I get it John. But the one thing you have that your civilian competition may not have going for them is perseverance…and a network of like minded people who want you to succeed. Networking has replaced newspapers, PC based job searching and job fairs as single most important thing you can do to find a job. Have a cup of coffee, relax the nerves, then take an objective look at your search and how you are going about it. What can we do to help?

    at #
  135. Number (1) doesn’t have to be true. If you’re a strong communicator – do your absolute best to translate your experience for them. Employers are as ignorant of your experiences as you are of their culture. Them, yourself and your fellow veterans a service in doing so.

    at #
  136. Number (1) doesn’t have to be true. If you’re a strong communicator – do your absolute best to translate your experience for them. Employers are as ignorant of your experiences as you are of their culture. You will do them, yourself and your fellow veterans a service in doing so.

    at #
  137. A military veteran takes the time to write about things that will assist military veterans with their transition, and he is accused of narcissism, ignorance, and being judgmental.
    The people that have this condescending and entitled attitude are exactly the type that will not (and should not) succeed when they transition to civilian life.

    at #
    • Disagree. How is it possible to blame the business for not hiring a veteran? There are plenty of young, willing, and educated people out there that will do twice the work for half the pay. Plus, they are trainable – retired military are set in their ways. Why would the private sector adapt for us? The military doesn’t adapt for them.

      at #
  138. Regarding the ‘starting over” issue. My perspective comes from 20 years of civilian corporate outplacement consulting where large bureaucracies like Ameritech, COM ED (energy) and Motorola lay off thousands of employees and my firm helped them get back to work. For managers level employees, learning to think outside a ‘chain of command” mindset, that of a large organization can also be a winning strategy. Consider being an ‘individual contributor” in a technical environment such as health care or consulting. If you aren’t winning at the management promotion from within of the large organization –trying to be hired into ‘lateral” positions, try ‘starting over” with an associates degree in an allied health field. This will take out of the box thinking and perhaps some individual career coaching, including taking the Myers Briggs Type Two assessment which helps you understand your ‘flex” areas of growth.

    at #
  139. I am painfully aware of the realities associated with this article, regarding my fellow Veterans and military retirees. Although I have 3 degrees (AA, BS, and MBA) and two post-graduate certification in Lean Six Sigma, I have NOT been able to find employment based on my education.
    I went to countless interviews (with a professional resume, listing my supervisory, instructional, and management experiences from the US Army) looking professional and certainly employable. Unfortunately, I heard the same response every time: “Well, Mr. Longstreet, you’ve certainly done a lot for our country and for the Army. Now, we’d like to hear about your civilian (“real-world”) management and supervisory experience.”
    Since I have little civilian supervisory/management experience to speak of, the myriad of military duties and responsibilities that I performed flawlessly mean nothing to civilian corporations, companies, CEOs, and HR personnel with unspoken “social” priorities that trump Veterans with Honorable Discharges. THAT is the reality facing 99% of all military retirees and Veterans.
    If the tens of thousands of military retirees (like me) can manage millions of dollars worth of equipment for the military while keeping thousands of Soldiers safe in all global combat and training environments and if those same individuals have MBAs with Lean Six Sigma certifications (like me), it is the businesses that fail to exploit the potential of former military personnel infinitely more than it is our personal failures.

    at #
    • Would have to disagree with that. “Managing millions of dollars worth of military equipment…” I mean thats all good but lets be realistic here. I did the same (almost) but if that piece of gear got trashed, then it got sent to a depot or DRMO for disposal. I was just like a custodian of sorts; it was tax payers money and it was like “oh well”. we were spoliled. Our quarters, utilities, transportation food, all paid for. All I did was manage some program by the gov. Take a civilain PM, in charge of a multimillion dollar project. If the project fails, he answers to the stakeholders and he wont be a PM for much longer. That kind of risk isnt to be tolerated. My advice to vets it to get certified in your trade, or mulitple certs in mutiple trades. PMI, CCNA, Developer, web design, SEO etc. Always have a skillset ready. Also, start a small biz, even on ebay or craigs. Get on the net, look at what others are doing, like recon out the market. Work in a trade or biz, copy what they do, modify it. MBA, grad school blah blah. They are everywhere. You dont find that innovative person on every corner because we arent taught to hustle. We been brainwashed to depend. Write up a biz plan, your enterprise statement, take it to a biz consultant, run it by investors, check out how to make word press website, start an LLC. Invest in yourself.nobody taught me any of this and I learned it late in the game. All these people talking about MBA, retired military etc. Where is the biz ? Start small and work on a plan. They should teach us this in transistion from the military, instead many go work as prison guards or cops, truck driver, defense contractor. Nothing wrong with that, but where is the enterprise skills? so dude, can you cook? make that unique reciepe and hustle it as a vendor if its allowed by your jurisdiction. You too good for that? I thought I was too. You see vets doing boot camps and selling their hustle to fat civilians. Your back on the block now, competing with immigrants, guys out of the joint, vets, MBAs, all types. Aint no time for excuses. This is what they should teach in transistion class. If the gov had any sense they would buy up vacant land in depressed areas and turn them into free trade zones; corporations could get tax free access for a year if they hired a vet or other disadvantaged person. Disadvanted people get tax free access for a year, and a biz loan to boot if their biz plan passed the legit test. They in turn would have to complete training paid in part by the corp and gov (all carrot/stick approach at every level) would be a gun free zone also. (got off track a bit) But thats how I see it, we got to start thinking free commerce and enterprise and promote that. Vets have the motivation and desire (I think anybody has) they just need that spark and motivation it could happen

      at #
    • Would have to disagree with that. “Managing millions of dollars worth of military equipment…” I mean thats all good but lets be realistic here. I did the same (almost) but if that piece of gear got trashed, then it got sent to a depot or DRMO for disposal. I was just like a custodian of sorts; it was tax payers money and it was like “oh well”. we were spoliled. Our quarters, utilities, transportation food, all paid for. All I did was manage some program by the gov. Take a civilain PM, in charge of a multimillion dollar project. If the project fails, he answers to the stakeholders and he wont be a PM for much longer. That kind of risk isnt to be tolerated. My advice to vets it to get certified in your trade, or mulitple certs in mutiple trades. PMI, CCNA, Developer, web design, SEO etc. Always have a skillset ready. Also, start a small biz, even on ebay or craigs. Get on the net, look at what others are doing, like recon out the market. Work in a trade or biz, copy what they do, modify it. MBA, grad school blah blah. They are everywhere. You dont find that innovative person on every corner because we arent taught to hustle. We been brainwashed to depend. Write up a biz plan, your enterprise statement, take it to a biz consultant, run it by investors, check out how to make word press website, start an LLC. Invest in yourself.nobody taught me any of this and I learned it late in the game. All these people talking about MBA, retired military etc. Where is the biz ? Start small and work on a plan. They should teach us this in transistion from the military, instead many go work as prison guards or cops, truck driver, defense contractor. Nothing wrong with that, but where is the enterprise skills? so dude, can you cook? make that unique reciepe and hustle it as a vendor if its allowed by your jurisdiction. You too good for that? I thought I was too. You see vets doing boot camps and selling their hustle to fat civilians. Your back on the block now, competing with immigrants, guys out of the joint, vets, MBAs, all types. Aint no time for excuses. This is what they should teach in transistion class. If the gov had any sense they would buy up vacant land in depressed areas and turn them into free trade zones; corporations could get tax free access for a year if they hired a vet or other disadvantaged person. Disadvanted people get tax free access for a year, and a biz loan to boot if their biz plan passed the legit test. They in turn would have to complete training paid in part by the corp and gov (all carrot/stick approach at every level) would be a gun free zone also. (got off track a bit) But thats how I see it, we got to start thinking free commerce and enterprise and promote that. Vets have the motivation and desire (I think anybody has) they just need that spark and motivation it could happen

      at #
  140. I just wanted to say thanks to Sultan Camp.
    After reading this it has helped me see the job seeking part of my current transition is nothing to take lightly and I will have to put in some hard work to make sure that the day I am no longer in the Air Force that I have secured a job already.

    at #
  141. I think the article CAN be helpful, if you’re willing to listen and make adjustments. it takes a while to transition, and several people have pointed out that military service is no longer a universal thing. True. Some people -especially those with a family member in service -will be helpful. Others, not so much. I try to help vets if they are applying at my workplace-put in a good word for them. A couple others tried to help me along the way. Having a good resume-if you’re less than 30, it should probably only be one page., taking the jargon out, avoiding errors, making a good impression-looking decent, thank you note or at least a thank you email-all good advice. Linked In-very important-I’m ALWAYS searching-the nature of the workplace these days-things can be pretty unstable if you aren’t a government worker. HR people DO check it. Facebook-take the dumb stuff out.(drunken pics, etc.) Some HR Directors check that, too. Twitter is mostly younger people, but still a good tool. I know the search and the transition can be frustrating. I got laid off a few years ago, and fought like a tiger to get rehired. had to take something else before another job in my field came along-took a year. I made sure I applied for a position EVERY DAY. There IS age discrimination, but if you have a decent education OR background in your field-not everyone has to have an MBA, present THAT as your key point. I think a lot of companies really do want to help vets-and you probably don’t want to work for one that doesn’t at least respect your service. I get the frustration of some of the bloggers here. We could have done a lot better if we hadn’t gone in, or especially if we hadn’t stayed. But that was our choice, and most of us would probably do the same thing again. And we have something they can’t buy, and never will have. Help other vets if you can. Good luck.

    at #
  142. Do you enjoy distorting the workforce with your arrogant bigotry?

    at #
  143. “only hire veterans, but also weed out non-veterans” <-there are EEO laws against that and you'll be fired if caught.
    I'm a vet also I served my 4 years in the Navy and I currently doing my Master in Human Resource also, but I understand you have to start from the bottom like a coordinator or assistant, unless some big fortune 500 firm decide to pick me up for a rotational program. What you learn in the military helps like integrity and commitment, but it not going to help you know the specifics of HR or know the business and that why you going to have to start from the bottom to learn just like an airman did

    at #
  144. I FAIL TO SEE HOW THIS BEGINS TO APPLY TO THE MILITARY AND NOT EVERYONE IN GENERAL? How in the h.e. double hockey sticks would someone in the food industry know how to transition to a job in the TV & Film industry. Just sounds like a Nancy that couldn’t cut it in the military and decided to write a stupid article that is just shooting darts at service members!

    at #
  145. Dear Sultan Camp, I enjoyed your article and very grateful you are able to share your advice. While I would agree with most of your logic and advice, I am also grateful I will never be hired by you or have you work under my charge. Respectfully, CWO3(Ret), USN

    at #
  146. this article has merit. it’s true

    at #
  147. Although I agree with a lot of what is being said in this article, I’m a little confused as to why this just pertains to retired military members. This seems like quality reasons for why anyone wouldn’t get hired, not JUST people who have served our country. I appreciate the tips and and I have to say, I learned a few things for the future when I start looking for jobs after college. However, I think this article shouldn’t be targeted towards this specific audience.

    at #
  148. Ok I hear you and agree with some of your ideas but should a perfect interview, resume that has all the right words and the right thank you note and all that cheesy crap be a true indicator of how valuable or worthless one can be to an organization? I’m a retired Army Warrant Officer with plenty technical background and experience in the Army, but also in management and working with people. I think civilian organizations have the same kind of people, different mentality perhaps. After all, lots of military personnel came out of the civilian sector. I came in straight out of High School and got my education and an immense amount of skills from the Army. I’m not even half the best the military can offer the civilian sector. Instead of putting us back on the shelf like expired milk why not invest a little time and effort in an endoctrination program for veterans in your organization. Believe me it will pay dividends. Thank God I don’t have the financial need for a job, especially in the civilian sector, because this mentality, which sounds like fear of veterans taking the jobs of those on the inside is the reason so many veterans are unemployed and even homeless.

    at #
  149. I see the merit in this advice. I am five years from retirement and I am taking my transition seriously. I got out of the military eight years ago and came back in a year later. This man is correct. Civilian employers do not care about your military service unless you want to be a security guard or continue being a trigger puller (mercenary). It is the cold hard truth. Many Service members feel they are owed a debt of gratitude by those that have not served. You are not. I am not trying to offend anyone. I have four years in the old combat zone in line Infantry platoons and Scout Recon Platoons, all in leadership positions. That experience does not add value to a civilian company. Because of my experiences with transitioning, I learned a valuable lesson. When I do get out this time I will be armed with a bachelor degree and realistic expectations. Do your research and know the field you want to transition to years before you get out. Follow this guys advice and consider your time in the military as non-existant if you are not a JMO. My many friends that have transititioned out didn’t start getting civilian experience and education until they got out. It took them years to get on track and most do not make 80K a year like we do. You do have an advantage. 30k-50k a year worth of retirement and disability. That means you have some breathing room financially. Most veterans will not like hearing what I’m saying but it’s the truth. Don’t be a victim. Suck it up and plan and have many contingencies. Be prepared to take a job that is “beneath you” and remember you have been through worse. At least you won’t be deficating in a hole and you will get to sleep more than three hours a night.

    at #
  150. I think this article depends heavily on where you spent your time in the military. The comment about social media was a bit juvenile to me. You may not be aware that many leaving the service do not use at social media intentionally. Social media is a great way for service members to be targeted. This concept is moving into bussiness. Many in the corporate world are making note of this. If you tell me everything your doing on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram it allows me to target you personally or as a company. Recently I briefed a Fortune 10 on this same concept. We even showed how the social media of their employees compromised security at remote locations. Overall this article makes good points for anyone transitioning to a new field. If your good at what you do people will see it.

    at #
  151. Your article really is a slap in the face however it is accurate in the steps that the veteran can do to improve his or her chances for a positive experience. They need to know that the civilian sector does not see them as valuable until they have proven themselves again in the civilian sector. They also know that most veterans will not stay in the first 6-7 jobs that they initially hire on with because they are always to anxious to find the next big challenge to sink their teeth into. It is how we advance in the military and we get stuck in that mindset that we have to move up to improve. I do think that you could have a larger response if you had changed the title to “Now here are 9 reasons you need to truly Understand before applying for any position”

    Mel at #
    • Thanks Mel. The reality is, transitioning is tough and the challenges are steep. The articles goal is to tell-it-like-it-is, instead of sugar coating it. The message is resonating, since it’s been read close to 500K times with 19K+ social media shares.

      at #
  152. What a vary refreshing and upfront article. In reflection, this article is quite informative and gives a good impression of how easy it is to see yourself from the other side. I enjoyed it and will certainly consider every aspect when applying/interviewing for another opportunity.

    at #
Trackbacks/Pingbacks
  1. Congratulations on Your Military Service | Hero Home Source – Mike Deehr -

    […] Retrieved from:  Career Attraction […]

  2. The Next Big Thing: Honesty « Veteran Transition Diary -

    […] the other hand, the article “Congratulations on Your Military Service- Now Here Are Nine Reasons Why I Won’t Hire Yo… , by Sultan Camp absolutely exploded in the veteran specific LinkedIn groups.  I’ve been […]

  3. Making the move: How a Marine made the military to civilan transition in public affairs « Aubia Communications Aubia Communications -

    […] transition from generalist to… well, whatever it is he or she wants to do. That’s the problem: once the uniform comes off, we’re no longer wearing as many professional “hats.” An employer seeking to hire a new media […]

  4. Thank You For Your Military Service — Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You | Modern Veterans of America -

    […] Business Insider in Careers by Sultan Camp, Career […]

  5. Quora -

    What should we do better as a society to support America’s veterans?

    Ive thought about this over the past few days… As a veteran, I feel I need to sell the skills Ive gained in the military while sortve downplaying the whole “military” thing. As a hirer I see a lot of resumes for mid-career jobs that scream “hire m…

  6. Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You | Every Veteran HiredEvery Veteran Hired -

    […] This post originally appeared on Career Attraction. […]

  7. “Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You” | FewProudFuture -

    […] http://www.careerattraction.com/congratulations-on-your-military-service-now-here-are-9-reasons-why-&#8230; […]

  8. Four Things to Do Before You Retire From the Military - Defense News -

    […] for accuracy and clarity. Sultan Camp, an Orion International military recruiter, also recommends taking your resume to your local university’s English department to have it reviewed for proper grammar. Once your […]

  9. Why military to civilian transitioners don't get hired | Jack W. BeasleyJack W. Beasley -

    […] his article, Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You, Sultan Camp explains why transitioners sometimes struggle when making the leap from military to […]

  10. Why Veterans Aren’t Getting Hired | JibberJobber Blog -

    […] Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You […]

  11. yyjworks.com » Tough Talk from a Military Recruiter (Part 1 of 3) -

    […] Sultan Camp‘s article titled “Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You” on the Career Attraction blog is targeted toward those in the military who are transitioning […]

  12. yyjworks.com » Tough Talk from a Military Recruiter (Part 2 of 3) -

    […] is part 2 of a review of Sultan Camp‘s article titled “Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You” on the Career Attraction blog . Although his piece is aimed at those transitioning from […]

  13. yyjworks.com » Tough Talk from a Military Recruiter (part 3 of 3) -

    […] is part 3 of a review of Sultan Camp’s article titled “Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You” on the Career Attraction blog . Although his piece is aimed at those transitioning from […]

  14. Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You | Career Attraction | Talent Community -

    […] Read the source article at careerattraction.com […]

  15. Congratulations on Your Military Service… Now Here Are 9 Reasons Why I Won’t Hire You – Job Market News -

    […] Source link […]

Leave a Reply

filme porno
filme porno
filme porno
filme online
muzica noua
filme porno
uniforme medicale