Dedicated toward helping job-seekers take charge of their job search, build confidence, and advance their careers.

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Okay, I felt compelled to respond to the ideas  introduced in this story – especially the slideshow and captions portraying veteran employment options.  Military careers can translate into much more than this story details.  Here are my thoughts:

Military transitioners can do anything they put their minds to! Their career fields don’t have to be limited. Based on my experience, the biggest challenge that military members transitioning into the civilian workforce have is simply translating and understanding the technical and inherent abilities they possess that are valuable to an employer. The best way to do this is to conduct a “skills inventory and self reflection”. I know, this sounds daunting and it may just be BUT it’s worse when you’re trying to pitch your elevator speech to an employer/recruiter and stumble over your words because you haven’t thought about who you are and what you have of value to give. It’s important to know who you are and what you’re about. You don’t get this from a single skills listing. This is one’s ‘foundation’, which is critical for career transition and professional reinvention.

Many of my clients and fellow military professionals go through the reflection period talking to a career professional who asks the right questions. I recently sat with an ‘infantry guy’ who was so frustrated with his transition process because he thought that all he was qualified to do was security-related work, when we finally pointed fingers toward project and program management, fitness instruction, outdoor recreation management, and corporate training as possible industries of interest. “Who would’ve thought?”, he said.

I recently wrote a quick article touching on this very subject as of recent. 100% inspired by my military transitioners! “Don’t Let Your Job Title Define You” – http://wp.me/p18A9U-hM

You can be all you you can be, just like the Army says. Really.

To view the article from my CareerBlog, visit http://t.co/82n8mQPV.

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Comments on: "Post-Military Careers (Don’t Have To Be Limited)" (5)

  1. I agree Christine. Most exiting military members find it difficult to even describe what’s out there for them. Their most valuable tools on the way out are the values they take with them. Integrity, discipline, and a never say die attitude. Skills can be taught; values are only forged in particular ways and serving the country is one of them…especially when those values come with a clearance.

    Thanks.

    Cheers,
    Kimani

  2. Well said, sir! Sometimes it just takes career professionals like myself to ask the right questions, then the military member arrives at their own idea of what career they chose to transition into. The inherent abilities that you mention cannot be taught in a training class, as such they are most sought out by recruiters. The best way to incorporate this in the resume is within the Profile or Executive Summary, and face-to-face during the behavioral interview process. To get here, it is crucial to do some self reflection and inventory! Know who you are before someone asks you the “live or die” question – “Why do you feel you are the best candidate for the position?”

    Best,

    Christine

  3. Excellent article Christine. So many people think of themselves as only “this” or “that”. We can be “made for” something we don’t even see. Thanks for bringing that to our attention. I hope people can look beyond what they are doing right now to what they would love to be doing. It’s a terrific way to live. Thanks again.

  4. Sharon, thank you for the feedback! One of the best “active job search techniques” incorporates professional reflection and taking a skills inventory. Most of my military folks have never had to practice the art of “the hunt” and a lot of times their transition programs target defense contractors and federal recruiters which may not be the elected career path for everyone. Confidence gains points with the employer. If a job seeker fails to demonstrate confidence in their professional skill set, the chances of obtaining employment decrease. If a military member – or any person in career transition – rocks the interview with purpose, their chances increase of course – the odds of this happening jump up tremendously when he/she has a great attitude, reflects on their professional accomplishments, and conducts a skills inventory. It really works!

  5. I found a fantastic article (pasted below) supporting this idea – an interview with a retired military officer who effectively applies his military knowledge and experience to his civilian career as a businessman and successful entrepreneur.

    Army Lessons That Apply to Small Business | Inc.com
    http://www.inc.com/articles/201107/army-lessons-that-apply-to-small-business.html

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