Posted on Jan 28, 2015
GySgt International It Pmo & Portfolio Manager
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Team, there are a lot of conversations about the transition from military to civilian life. There are two dimensions to this discussion: "Are you really sure?" and "If you are, be prepared."

"Are you really sure?"
I challenge those of you thinking of leaving the military to really think about it. It is a complete change. Grass is not necessarily greener. You are exchanging what you know for what you don't know.

It's a change in culture, values, and purpose. When you enlisted, you left the comforts of home and being a civilian under mommy and daddy's umbrella. You then went under the military umbrella. Out here, you're on your own. It's a jungle. You may think I'm exaggerating, and this is just a little over the top, but you'll probably see responses agreeing with me. There you can focus purely on mission. There are associations and groups for families. You have guaranteed 3 hots and a cot. You're told where to go and what to do.

Out here, you're expected to handle your life and deliver on the job. And no one cares that much about how you manage your personal life . . .. but they do if it reflects poorly on you; slowing your career, etc.

"If you are, be prepared"
Military leaders are confident and, quite frankly, trust you to do your job since you were motivated to enlist and, the majority, take orders. Civilian managers, however, are a lot more risk averse. They do not assume that everyone stepping in front of them will carry out their duties. So they're really tough in interviews and unless they find the "Best Candidate," they won't fill the position. Candidates can be passed over for anything. It is a very competitive world out here.

I posted this in another thread. My company is representative of other companies; you'll need to scale the numbers based on company size for the data I'm providing. My company, Cardinal Health, is a Fortune 20 company (over $100 billion revenue annually) has 32,000+ employees. We post 5000 positions annually. For those posts, we receive in the range of 1 MILLION resumes. Other companies experience the same thing. I guarantee you of those submitted resumes, probably 80-90% are "shot-gunned." Of the balance, half are poorly prepared. Suffice it that typos and general resumes hit the trashcan pretty fast. You think selection for Top Gun was tough? I'd rank getting a top-notch job in the civilian world is the same way.

All of you have what it takes. Take advantage of the retired and separated network of vets. Take advantage of any classes or events companies hold and get to know people. And take the time to really prepare yourself and your resume. And just like if you've tried dating multiple people at once, keep your story straight and make each of the companies you're talking to feel like "they're the one." Don't tell them you're "dating" other companies.

If you're interested in attending a course provided by vets and civilian HR and hiring managers who are focused and dedicated to help you transition, check out the Cardinal Health veterans site and the VPAC (Veterans Professional Advancement Course). We are in Dublin, Ohio, but also provide the course remotely. Click here: http://www.cardinalhealth.com/mps/public/!ut/p/c0/04_SB8K8xLLM9MSSzPy8xBz9CP0os3gjA3cDAwtfZ18fV2NTA09HL_dAYz8TQ4NQM_2CbEdFADfU32U!/?WCM_PORTLET=PC_7_20G008MCMLCQD0I6KL912K3005_WCM&WCM_GLOBAL_CONTEXT=/mps/wcm/connect/us/en/careers/military/militaryresourcesupport
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Responses: 2
MAJ David Vermillion
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Great comment. Yes , in the military regardless of the service you are told every movement to take. We are more or less told exactly how to act and not given much opportunity to free think. How does military service relate to civilian service, how do skills transfer, etc. The military offers security unknown to civilian life. If you choose to get out of the service, realize one thing, you are on your own.
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1SG David Lopez
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spread the word, CDCR is hiring, and Veterans get fast tracked.

http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/Career_Opportunities/index.html
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