By Debbie Gregory
Americans can’t hear or see the news these days without encountering a plea to support our nation’s Veterans. The message that Veterans are unemployed and need your help has been one of the most common. While it is true that Veterans statistically have high unemployment and would greatly benefit from the public’s assistance with finding employment, Veterans aren’t looking for a handout.
Current service members and Veterans belong to a fraternity of some of the most capable individuals in the country. These men and women have been tested and proven in training, in the gym, in the classroom, on the field, and on actual deployments in combat scenarios.
Veterans do not want the public to just hire them for jobs, simply because they used to wear a uniform. Veterans do not want employment where they can’t earn sustainable income for their families. Veterans don’t want pity, charity or menial employment. So what do Veterans want?
Veterans who spent several years maintaining their personal fitness, combat readiness and following/carrying out orders want a fair chance to earn a living that supports their families. Veterans want to be hired for these positions because they are recognized as the best candidates for the position.
Part of the fairness that Veterans want include employers’ acknowledgement of military training and service as viable work experience. Many Veterans have heard employers at interviews ask if they have any ‘real’ work experience.”
The truth is that service members, from each and every branch of service wear multiple hats. Veterans have had to fill a multitude of roles and responsibilities depending on their pay grade and military occupation. Most Veterans are accustomed to accomplishing tasks in a pre-set timeframe. Tasks from cleaning a work or living space to completing paperwork to taking an enemy position has been asked of today’s Veterans, and they are experts at mission accomplishment.
Veterans also have a leg up on their peers in delegation. While many non-Veteran employees might feel shy about tasking their subordinates and co-workers, Veterans can assign tasks with an experienced hand.
Furthermore, Veterans are highly experienced in making the most out of materials with little-to-no budget. GI know-how can be credited for a slew of innovations and inventions, and these common-sense applications should be put to use at every business.
So from now on, when you hear that Veterans are in need of your “help”, please do not apply the mental picture of a homeless person with an outstretched hand, asking for spare change. Please picture the more accurate portrayal of the capable soldier, returning home, just needing a fair shot at employment.
Veterans and employers looking to connect with each other should consider www.MilitaryConnection.com as the conduit to a mutually beneficial relationship.
Military Connection proudly serves those who serve in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Guard & Reserve, Veterans and their Families. We are the go to site for Veteran Employment and information on Veteran education. Militaryconnection.com provides Veterans with and Directory of Employers, a Job Board, information on the Post-9/11 GI Bill, and a blog that offers Veterans boundless information. Be sure to visit Militaryconnection.com, the go to site.
Military Connection: “Helping” Veterans: By Debbie Gregory