Right now it’s cool to be a veteran, at least in some ways. Organizations are spending a lot of time and money to cast their nets far and wide to find veteran talent. Not only are they doing this, but in many ways they do it very publicly, especially around Veterans Day.
One thing we can’t lose sight of, however, is that they are searching for Veteran Talent….two words there….Veteran AND Talent. At some point we as a group will not be the “in thing”, and once that happens many of those organizations will revert back to just looking for talent. The other focus is to find said talent quickly and efficiently. After all, it’s really about the bottom the line.
The military will continue to be a great place for young people in America to master the skills that organizations need, but we will never have a monopoly on producing that kind of person. Civilian colleges and trade schools exist for the explicit purpose of making individuals employable. Not so with the military, future employability is just a by-product with us. The recruiter may have told you will be able to master the skills that companies are looking for, and while that is in fact the case, it’s not the whole story. The truth is, the military really provides you with great opportunities. Some people take advantage of them better than others.
Remember- It’s not about being a veteran, it’s about making the case to a potential employer that you have a talent that they can use. When this “Veteran Hiring Craze” dies down, it will be even more critical that veterans reach out and initiate those conversations with people in the civilian sector. I hope those currently serving understand this and are preparing themselves appropriately.