Posted on Aug 20, 2014
SSG Pete Fleming
I came across this article on LinkedIn... It is a topic that has been covered in one form or fashion on here and and many other outlets. Keep in mind it was written by a Veteran geared towards non-Vets... But an interesting read and a idea that needs to be expanded on.

For those that just want the basics I copied and pasted the article... for those that want to see the actual article and the other topics covered by the author here is the link... [login to see] [login to see] 0-are-vets-just-another-diversity-group?trk=hb_ntf_MEGAPHONE_ARTICLE_POST

If you are a recruiter without any military experience, how do you think about veterans? Are we a group of folks with specialized skills and experiences that make us better-suited for certain jobs? Or are we another category that has a quota attached to it?

Veterans who are looking for opportunities (which should be all of us) need to seriously consider these questions.

There is no good reason for a recruiter without personal military experience to proactively seek out veterans as candidates. Simply put, he or she has no way of confidently assessing the people coming out of the military.

Recruiters are awash in confusing messages. There are arguments and counter-arguments to every point about hiring veterans.

We are comfortable in dynamic environments but we do not take initiative.
We are hard-working but require and lead with harsh discipline.
We can work well in teams but are authoritative and stifle dissent.
We tolerate risk and demonstrate leadership but could explode because of PTSD.

And on and on. You can come up with your own, I'm sure.

How would I respond to any of this if I was a recruiter? Which statements are true and which are false? How do I start to integrate military experience - especially if it's poorly written on a disjointed resume - into my overall picture of how this person would fit into a job?

Without any more context or a way to reach out to someone I trusted who can help make sense of the situation, it makes sense to avoid the whole issue.

That may work in the short-term, but this problem hurts us all, especially in industries and companies that do not have much familiarity with veterans (e.g. Silicon Valley).

Veterans are less likely to be considered for jobs for which they are qualified, so they stay unemployed, underemployed, or simply misemployed.
Recruiters are missing out on a wide array of candidates who could perform very well in the jobs they are trying to fill.
Companies do not get to take advantage of the truly unusual qualities that often accompany a successfully-transitioned veteran, hurting their profitability and potential for future growth.

We can certainly work to fix this problem. Recruiters can benefit from a Military 101 type education from their HR departments. Veterans can get better at translating their resumes. Mentors and other helping hands can arrange for "warm introductions" that let the veteran get in front of someone for an interview.

How would you fix the problem? What else is out there that can empower both vets and recruiters?
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Responses: 1
SFC Mark Merino
I believe that will totally depend on the individual. With no experience to rely on, all they can act on are their preconceived opinions based on everything from war movies, the news channels they chose to watch, what they have heard in casual conversation, etc.
SSG Pete Fleming
SSG Pete Fleming
7 y
SFC Mark Merino... That is so true in everything... people make assumptions without being informed or looking at things case by case... just as I hated mass punishment in the military, I hate the stigma that people place on us... Yet one must admit that some of the stereotypes are based on truth... We do tend to be more rigid, we end to hold ourselves up with a sense of pride, and the list goes on... But people focus on the neg without seeing the pos
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