Wednesday, June 17, 2015

6 Actions You Must Take NOW to Ensure a Successful Post-Military Career (Part 2)

Orion Navy NCO and SNCO Recruiter Sultan Camp recently published a blog post for Every Veteran Hired that explores six actions you must take now to ensure a successful post-military career. Check out this excerpt below to see the final three reasons. Visit Every Veteran Hired for the full article.

4. Think Twice Before Claiming You’re a Subject Matter Expert

At job fairs, I tend to hear many military professionals make the claim that they’re a subject matter expert at X, Y or Z. However, I suggest you think twice before making this claim to a hiring decision-maker or recruiter.

By all means, I encourage you to make the claim if you’ve done the research to determine whether or not that specialty you’re a “subject matter expert” in is in demand in the labor market. If you haven’t, then Google that specialty plus the word “jobs” to determine if there are job postings that are asking for it. You can also use Google Adwords to determine how many times that skill has been searched in the last month.

It doesn’t do a job seeker any good being a subject matter expert on typewriters if there isn’t a demand for it in the local job market. If you have several skills you’re staking a claim to, it’s imperative that you determine which one has the greatest potential in terms of market demand, job opportunities and the years of required experience for which the employer is looking.

5. Manage Your Health Care…For the First Time

We’ve all heard about the challenges the Veterans Administration is facing with the backlog of claims that have been filed. While the process is getting a lot better, there are some things you need to do right now.

First of all, stop being so stubborn and take your butt down to medical. More importantly, get everything documented. Believe me, your claim adjudication with the VA is based on “show me that it’s service-connected rather than telling me.” At least 12 months before your last day on Active Duty, be sure to make two copies of your medical and dental records. Better yet, have them scanned and saved to a thumb-drive or similar device.

Secondly, don’t wait until the last minute to get your record reviewed by the DAV, AMVETS or American Legion to provide guidance on filing your claim with the VA. Try to get this done at least 6 months prior to starting your terminal leave. After this is done, make it an imperative to go to the VA workshop and get your package submitted as early as possible.

6. Include Your Spouse or Partner

It may sound like common sense that your spouse or partner be actively involved in your transition process. However, I see all too often candidates who can’t accept one of our employers’ job offers (that matches their geographic, skill set and salary preferences) because they haven’t spoken to their significant others about any of these parameters.

It’s a necessity that you have a frank and candid discussion with your life partner as early as possible. This may be the time when a spouse is thinking about starting their own career after being supportive for 20+ years, the children may be in high school, etc. Geographic flexibility is a major factor in employability, and each family has to realistically weigh the pros and cons instead of leaving it to chance and unrealistic expectations.

In a Nutshell

Your transition is much more than your retirement ceremony and terminal leave. It’s a lengthy, involved process that only yields the amount of time and effort you put into it before you’re piped ashore for the last time.

Click here to read more from Every Veteran Hired.

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