When Valerie Brown sat across from David Letterman on his late night talk show, she had high hopes that her “out-of-the-box” strategy would pay off in multiple job offers. She was, after all, an eight year veteran of the U.S. Army, a Fellow with The Mission Continues, a national representative of Student Veterans of America, and an Intern for Veterans of Foreign Wars. If those credentials weren’t impressive enough, Valerie had also earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communications. So why was this assignment, finding employment, her toughest to date?
Unfortunately, this is indicative of what many of our nation’s finest are facing as they separate from the military and transition to civilian life. Faced with double-digit unemployment and a challenging economy, many veterans might be tempted to thrown in the towel. But the best strategy to get a civilian career going is get creative and get going!
Don’t undervalue good old fashioned networking. Involve your family and friends; more people helping you increases your chances of success. Social media, such as Facebook and LinkedIn, are also good places to spread the word. Additionally, Twitter and blogs are also good ways to get the word out. And be proactive: if there is a company you’d like to work for, contact them and inquire about their hiring process. Be persistent! Using only one strategy, such as answering employment ads, greatly reduces your chances of success. The key to a fruitful job hunt is diversifying and using a number of different strategies.
Valerie was referred to Military Connection by John Mikelson of the University of Iowa. We wanted to help, and felt that we could because one major area of our focus is employment. We offered to promote Valerie in our newsletters that deploy to over 800,000 emails, and put her on our homepage banner. I’m happy to tell you that Valerie received multiple job offers, and just relocated to begin her new job – MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!
We invite other Veterans to register on our web site here: https://militaryconnection.com/jobs/seek_sign_up.asp. If you have a compelling story, please email us: [email protected] and each month we will feature a Veteran seeking employment in our newsletter.