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Top 8 military to civilian transferable job skills

Tomas H. Lucero
|May 22|magazine8 min read

Today, we honor the men and women who have served in the armed forces since the inception of our country. We honor them in a variety of ways, including parades, family meals, consumer discounts and so forth. One of the best and most practical ways to honor military veterans, though, is to hire them.

Military service men and women take a big risk when they leave their life in the armed forces to join the civilian workforce. They are also, though, well-prepared. Following are essential skills that military service men and women learn and hone while serving and can offer to potential employers.

8. Technical: Service men and women work in a variety of technical fields, from being emergency medical technicians to submarine console operators.  

7. Combat: Formal training in the use of arms and hand-to-hand combat, along with an understanding of authority and poise, are golden in the eyes of employers in law enforcement.

6. Determination: Service men and women are trained to think of tasks and projects in terms of “missions.” Thinking like this, conditions people to apply laser-beam focus to their work. Concentration is fundamental to performance and success.

5. Poise: Only a former service member knows what it takes to keep your head in the most dangerous of situations: a combat situation. The perspective a service member learns from this can make the difference between failure and success in a high stakes work situation.  

4. Solidarity: In the military, workers understand that the success or failure—which can mean wounds or death--of their peers depends how well they perform their own mission. Time and time again, they have been in situations where they have had to consider the big picture consequences of their behavior.  

3. Understanding of authority: The backbone to the functionality of the military is the chain of command. When service members fail to follow up on an order, the army can become paralyzed. Former military personnel the importance of doing your part, even if one’s role feels insignificant.

2. Service: Companies constantly ask themselves: what is the public good of what we do? Often times, business activities are also serving society in some way. Service is the essence of what former military men and women have done.

1. Discipline: Having lived and worked in a regimented environment over years, former soldiers have the kind of grasp on discipline that Olympic athletes have. This trait is essential to gaining mastery of tasks. Every organization needs its experts.

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