Military Veterans Have Honed The Intangibles

By University Alliance

With two wars drawing to a close and the need to complete cutbacks, the United States military is now decreasing their numbers.  With the current focus on leadership in the private sector, veterans may be the panacea that the American workforce has needed.  When veterans are employed in the private sector, they have the opportunity to capitalize on the specialized training they received during their service, bringing valuable intangible assets to private companies who have a need for effective leadership in the private sector. 

Military Reduction in Force Frees up Qualified Employees

With the fact that military services have been ordered to reduce their readiness levels by at least 8%, there are now a large number of former military personnel that are available to go to work in the private sector. These veterans, who have been valued and rewarded for their effective leadership during their military training, are the products of a system that focuses on developing skills that private sector employees may not have.  In fact, many of these veterans are so steeped in cutting edge leadership skills that they could be teaching a leadership certification class on their own. 

Interestingly enough, while many veterans may have the leadership skills that American business so desperately needs, they may not see the value in their training on their own.  Culturally, our military has been focused on developing leadership for so long that the private sector is just now catching up.  The gap between the military expectations for leaders and our business models can be tightened by adding veterans to business.

Mission Ready, Ready For Work

There is no better place for developing intangible leadership skills than in the military.  The U.S. armed forces, through their training programs, have the ability to develop intangible proficiencies and talents that result in a new skill set and the development of natural aptitudes.  Due to this fact, former military workers are in high demand by employers because they bring to the table skills that are either unteachable in a work environment, or skills that are too expensive to train. 

What types of skills do veterans bring to their private sector employers?  They bring intangibles such as the creative application of supplies and solutions, a sense of fortitude and perseverance, their own initiative and self-direction, effective problem solving in high-stress environments, knowledge regarding strategic personnel management and experience with motivation, change, and adaptability.   These qualities are the epitome of agile process and make former military personnel valuable to any organization. 

Veterans Have Leadership Skills On Board

While employers can spend time and money trying to develop the leadership skills of their current workers, hiring a veteran may be a better use of time and money.  Given the fact that veterans come with an ability to recognize and implement leadership skills in any environment, hiring a veteran makes sense in this competitive market.  Veterans are not simply trained to respond to commands.  In fact, the goal of their training is to help them to recognize the talents inherently in their people and to develop those talents to enable their team to succeed.   This addresses a critical need in business today.

Conclusion

While many veterans may not believe they offer anything to the private sector workforce other than their distinguished service, this just isn't true.  Veterans possess a comprehensive skill set of leadership intangibles such as discipline, adaptability, and problem solving that simply are too expensive to teach to most private sector employees through any classroom or online management courses.  A veteran brings more than just discipline and dedication to a private sector job, they bring skills that are a key component to our military force – skills they see as a way of life.

Category: Leadership and Management