(Lex Brown, Dr. Dionne Poulton, Sean Rainey & Sam Douglas)
This episode of “The Dr. Dionne Show” features a vibrant discussion about the unique skills and values that veterans and athletes have in common that make them “low risk hires” and invaluable workplace pillars. You will hear the impressive personal stories of Lex R. Brown II, a former athlete and veteran of the U.S. Air Force and Operation Iraqi Freedom, turned entrepreneur; Sam Douglas, former standout basketball player turned corporate executive and basketball coach; and Sean Rainey, who is a boys basketball coach, former athlete and a retired police detective with the New York City Police Department. Listeners, especially hiring managers and HR representatives will learn why “bias” is not necessarily a bad thing when making the decision to hire a veteran or athlete, especially when filling a leadership position.
Job-seeking military veterans are ultra-competitive candidates. They have proven track records and in-demand skill sets. Sometimes their value gets lost in translation, but here you’ll find some of the crystal clear benefits for recruiting and hiring them.
Currently, there are many commendable initiatives advocating for the hiring of military veterans. I greatly appreciate every organization and individual concerned with the interests of our country’s transitioning service members. However, as a military veteran myself, I’d like to turn the tables and focus on how hiring military veterans is a lucrative move for companies across every industry. Here are just five of the many amazing benefits of hiring veterans:
1. CAPABLE CHANGE AGENTS
Change can be challenging and is often met with resistance But there are people out there who know how to both embrace and implement change. Those people are often veterans. They are going to ask the tough questions, intent on truly understanding the coming changes so that they can be an active and impactful contributor to the overall transformation. They will also support the change leader(s)’s vision and they will help to communicate it to other team members. They will act with patience, as they have been through many changes throughout their time spent in a military uniform.
2. PEER-TO-PEER ACCOUNTABILITY
Military veterans are excellent at keeping themselves and those around them on track. Integrity, order, and discipline all play a factor here, which are some of the greatest attributes of veterans. As a current Operations Manager with over 50 employees I am responsible for, I find that high levels of peer-to-peer accountability coincide with high levels of morale. Not only will veterans be very vocal in identifying non-compliance, they will also offer support in correcting any issues…
Career change is almost never easy, but it can be simplified in some instances. From mid 2012 to nearly the end of 2014, I was on an unrelenting career transition journey, as I transformed from active duty military service member to where I am today. Throughout that time I needed guidance, sound advice, inspiration, and some times just a good story to read. The six blogs listed below gave me all of that and more. I’m hoping they can do the same for you.
The belief at CAREEREALISM is that every job is temporary. That’s why it’s so important to stay informed and to keep learning, growing, acquiring new skills, and relationship building. CAREEREALISM produces an exclusive Recruiter Directory, publishes a daily career insights newsletter, and presents “sneak peeks” articles with the inside scoop about employers to help you find a workplace that fits you best.
Want to learn how to be considered “in demand” as a job seeker? Are you pondering an effective entry into the world of technology professionals? Well then this is the blog for you. Better yet, one of UDACITY’s Nanodegree programs may just be the solution you need to fix your income stream. Gain highly desired credentials that are built and recognized by industry leaders such as Google and General Electric. Check out UDACITY’s blog for further details.
This is a great news and culture site, primarily focused on providing a platform to amplify the voices of millennial American veterans. If you’re seeking amazing stories to motivate you, challenge your perceptions, intrigue healthy debate, or simply to lighten your mood, then Task & Purpose should become a go-to source for you.
As a fellow military veteran, Melissa Washington is an outstanding advocate for women and veterans in the labor market. In fact, she is the Founder and Director at Women Veterans Alliance. She is also the author of “Get Back to Work”, a book on real-world strategic career moves to put you ahead of your competitors.
As put simply on its website, American Dream U is committed to empowering those that serve. The site provides a ton of free resources, mentor networks, and a calendar of its signature events like VETRACON. Founder Phil Randazzo, a serial entrepreneur and investor, is a genuine proponent of active duty military members, veterans, and spouses finding their dream job and/or entrepreneur resources.
Coming out of active duty Air Force in 2012, G.I. Jobs is what I primarily consumed for inspiration and information. The stories are highly motivational, the employer profiles are deeply insightful, and the extra tools provided were critical to my eventual career change successes (i.e. the pay calculator, the interview survival kit, and the transition readiness quiz).
I look at career transition as a never-ending journey. In that mindset, I also pursue perpetual development as a professional. That’s why I’m subscribed to all six of the above mentioned blogs, and why I’m also a contributing writer to several of them. They each provide value in exchange for your time and attention.
Didn’t graduate with a 4.0 GPA? Is your degree not from a top Ivy League institution? Are you not fluent in seven different computer programming languages already? Well, I guess you’re screwed then, huh? Or at least that’s what some people are being misled to believe as they search for a new mission and career path.
This is not being written to demean our society’s brilliant scholars, or to act as if “smarts” don’t matter. But, it’s time for society to get back to respecting and honoring good old fashion merit, hard work, and resilience. In such a volatile, unrelenting, ambiguous economic climate, what asset is more vital than resilience? Last I checked, the one common thing that lead to success for the likes of Henry Ford and Andrew Carnegie was resilience.
According to the American Psychological Association (APA), resilience is defined as the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress. It is essentially “bouncing back” from difficult experiences.
Like any learned skill, resilience requires some renewing and refreshing from time to time. Maintaining great resilience can help protect us from depression, anxiety, and other mental health conditions. It can also offset physical illness and injury. That said, here are FOUR WAYS TO BUILD & MAINTAIN RESILIENCE:
- NETWORK/MAKE CONNECTIONS – first, as much as is within your control, maintain a strong support system. This is your base for survival in life, and it requires as much from you as you demand from it. Bond with family, friends and close associates on a regular basis. Make those phone calls, write those emails, go out for lunch and coffee. Whatever it takes, keep nurturing those relationships. Beyond your support system, build bridges through new connections to get where you aspire to be.
- TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF – maintain an active physical fitness routine, to care for your physical aspect. Just as important is the state of your mind and spirit, which can benefit from active prayer, meditation, yoga, or whatever form of inner-exercise you deem best for you (to me, prayer is the most powerful of all).
- KEEP THINGS IN PROPER PERSPECTIVE – always remember that life goes in cycles. This means that any negative experience you may have can and should be only temporary. During those times of adversity, count your blessings. Look at everything good around you, and appreciate the little things. This should help keep you balanced and hope filled.
- VOLUNTEER – why? Because volunteering will keep you humble and grateful, regardless of any struggles you might experience during times of transition. As the old saying goes, “do unto others as you want done unto you”. Give, and your hand is open to receive. But that’s beside the point. Helping others is great for the heart and soul.
If you’re still finding ways to persevere in life, in spite of any setbacks, then your resilience is already proven. Talk it up as one of your most valuable skills. It should definitely be listed as a keyword on your resume. Take care, be resilient, adapt and overcome.
Conquering career transition can be both brutal & rewarding. I’m writing a book to help military vets win either way. By end of summer 2015 I’m going to publish a comprehensive guide to conquering career transition, specifically tailored for military veterans. This is an independent endeavor, so your support is very welcomed and highly needed. Whether you pre-order 1 or more copies or just help promote the campaign, your efforts can help get this book into the hands/onto the tablets of tens of thousands of unemployed & under-employed transitioning military service members.
Recently I was talking to a friend and he said he had no interest in being an entrepreneur. Curious, I asked why. There was one simple reason: he didn’t like to make decisions with limited information. As an entrepreneur, so many decisions have to be made with little or no data and lots of gut instinct. For many people, especially perfectionists, making those kinds of decisions over and over is terrifying.
For me, I like to keep in mind that I’m trying to make a good decision, learn from it, and move forward. Here are a few thoughts on entrepreneurial decision making:
- Perfect information never exists, never
- Limited information is normal, and often good enough to make quality decisions
- Almost all decisions aren’t permanent (thankfully!)
- Constantly learning and adapting is key to get to the right answer
- Moving forward is better than standing still
When the next decision is required on limited information, make…
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2014 was a pivotal year. Lots of challenges presented themselves, but by the grace of The Most High we made it into 2015. I’d like to thank all who continue to support my blog site. I do my best to write meaningful and useful posts, and will continue to step my game up in 2015. As we move forward, here’s a quick look back at 5 of my most read posts in 2014:
1. WHY MEMPHIS? – https://solutionsbylex.com/2014/08/18/why-memphis/
2. WHY COFFEE SHOPS ARE BETTER THAN GOLF COURSES FOR SMALL BUSINESS DEALS – https://solutionsbylex.com/2014/08/04/why-coffee-shops-are-better-than-golf-courses-for-small-business-deals/
3. WHAT TEACHING 2ND GRADERS IN SUMMER SCHOOL TAUGHT ME ABOUT TRUE LEADERSHIP – https://solutionsbylex.com/2014/07/21/what-teaching-2nd-graders-in-summer-school-taught-me-about-true-leadership/
4. LEADERSHIP STYLE – https://solutionsbylex.com/2014/01/10/leadership-style/
5. THE INEVITABLE NUMBERS GAME IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP – https://solutionsbylex.com/2014/06/02/the-inevitable-numbers-game-in-entrepreneurship/