Posted on Oct 12, 2015
COL Mikel J. Burroughs
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Veteran Reality Check #1: It is All About Profit?

It doesn’t matter what you have done in your past; employers only care about what they believe you can do for them in the future…with profit as the key metric.

So, what do you do with this knowledge and how does it help you get employed?

By Tim Dalhouse, MBA, PMP
Co-Founder of Vets2PM: We help Military Veterans become Project Managers

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/veteran-reality-check-1-its-all-profit-tim-dalhouse-mba-pmp?trk=hp-feed-article-title-like

Are you a Military Veteran attempting to transition to a civilian career? You need to get one thing straight in your mind – For civilian employers, the hiring decision is all about profit. That’s the harsh reality, and the quicker you grasp that, the quicker you will find employment.

That may sound like a broad generalization, because a hiring decision is definitely a multi-criteria decision analysis with the goal of finding the exactly correct round peg to fit in the round hole the employer needs to fill. While there are many factors that influence the employer’s decision, the fundamental underlying motivation is how much profit potential does each candidate represent to the organization. Think about it – why would an employer pay you $75,000 per year, plus benefits, if the work you do for them is not going to generate more than $75,000 per year?
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SFC Contract Administrator
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Thanks for sharing.
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LTC Stephen F.
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Edited >1 y ago
Yes COL Mikel J. Burroughs I do believe that potential employers are more focused on future potential than past performance.
Veteran should arm them selves with as much significant information about the company they are interviewing with including goals, major clients, frequent partnering organizations, etc.
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MSgt Danny Hope
MSgt Danny Hope
>1 y
Agreed Sir...but it is also important to take that last step; be prepared to discuss what you can bring to the position as it relates to the areas you mentioned.
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LTC Stephen F.
LTC Stephen F.
>1 y
MSgt Danny Hope - I concur, In the past I have found that displaying strong evidence of interest in a company by demonstrating that you have researched and conducted analysis of what you found serves as a springboard for discussions about what they think you could do for their company which is much better than you initiating that topic.
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Cpl Jeff N.
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This might be an over simplification. Many jobs are looked at as "costs of doing business", "overheads" or SG&A type costs (sales/general administrative) . These types of costs are generally measured as a percentage of gross profit/cost of goods/revenue etc. and as long as the company is generating the right ratio, generally speaking the staff jobs are relatively secure. Companies that are growing are far more comfortable places to work than those that struggle to grow or are in a declining state. You could look at staff roles as budgetary expense items. You need to manage them and keep them to certain ratios.

Jobs such as project managers are typically viewed as a cost center and not as a profit generator per see. Everything is ultimately about the profitability of the company but few positions have a direct tie to profitability. By the way, generating $75,000 in revenue will generate
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CPT Robert Louthan
CPT Robert Louthan
>1 y
I'd like to suggest a slightly different angle on the math. I think that you should calculate and use the gross margin rather than net profit. If a new employee comes in and the gross margin (sales less the direct expense like materials and direct labor) is 50%, then the incremental sales required to contribute $75k and cover the cost of the new hire is lower - $150,000. If incremental sales rise above $150k, the company starts to make a profit. This is over simplified, but the point is many companies can make a profit when sales per employee exceed $100k and they keep overhead expenses in check. Therefore, I'll be thrilled to hire an employee that make my sales increase so the gross margin exceeds the incremental cost to hire them.
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Cpl Jeff N.
Cpl Jeff N.
>1 y
CPT Robert Louthan . I agree with your approach. The reason I used net is because many companies have such varied cost structures and net profit is the acid test. I also viewed project managers as more likely a staff position and not a revenue generator (generally speaking). The industry I work in has a far higher target of sales per employee than $100k (closer to a million)but understand many companies have varied metrics.
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