A Political Analogy for Veteran Job Seekers

As we enter the final phase of the presidential election, there can be no question about the fact that the primary season must have disappointed many Americans. As the season progressed, well over a dozen candidates dropped out of the running, forcing many voters to make choices that felt like hard compromises.

Employers often face similar situations when making hiring decisions. They frequently evaluate resumes and interview job candidates – and frequently that no one single candidate possesses all the experience and characteristics called for in the job descriptions. Now it’s time for those employers that need to “get on with the show” to compromise and consider what characteristics and skills they need the most.

But what may be a hard compromise for an employer can be good news for a transitioning or veteran job candidate. You may not “check all the boxes” for the employer. But, because you have a great attitude and perseverance, as well as many intangible skills, you will get a shot.

Each year the armed forces of the United States provide a steady flow of high quality applicants that are ready for a wide variety of jobs in the civilian world. In all likelihood, you have taken advantage of opportunities for learning and engagement provided throughout your military service. You have learned to lead others and help them advance – and you’ve had the benefit of mentors to guide you.

Additionally, the core values that are instilled in service members will continue to serve you well. As one Air Force technical sergeant who successfully transitioned from an aircraft technician to a technician for BMW said, “The people skills I acquired in the military help me now, because I can work well with other employees – and customers – to ensure vehicles are repaired correctly. An attitude, certain characteristics, and a way of life were bundled by the Air Force and embedded in me. Those values gave me a standard for working with colleagues and customers when it came to being a BMW technician.”

So, do not hold back. Finish out 2016 with vigor and determination. Execute your job search plan as best you know how, and an employer may very well “vote” for you. You are America’s best, and our nation needs your skills and attributes in many different ways!