Veterans often struggle to find work despite the fact that many of the skills they acquire in the military are transferrable to the business world. Many veterans possess qualities and training that position them as top business leaders. Often, these individuals stand out as among the best new hires and quickly climb the ranks, particularly when they can demonstrate how they can apply their existing skills in new ways that will benefit a business. Here are some of the unique qualities that veterans possess that make them particularly well prepared to become successful business leaders:
In the military, when things do not go according to plan, lives may hang in the balance. Due to this pressure, many veterans learn how to think on their feet and to quickly adjust when a situation changes. Resilience involves maintaining strength in the face of adversity. In the military, there is often not time to dwell on failure. Instead, individuals need to learn from their mistakes and reframe an approach that is more likely to work. Veterans bring this same adaptability to the workplace and often view challenges as opportunities to learn and improve processes rather than as potential setbacks.
2. Team Builder
In the military, people place complete trust in their teammates, which means that veterans understand how to build and maintain close-knit teams. In the business world, morale is perpetually undervalued. Veterans understand how important it is to build connections and develop trust. Due to their ability to connect to the people around them in unique ways, former members of the military can often spur incredible growth in their teams and drive productivity. Teams that work together effectively tend to produce more innovative solutions. Veterans understand how to enable every team member to bring their best to the table.
In the military, people leave very little up to chance. For the reason, a meticulous amount of planning and organization goes into everything that veterans do. Veterans understand that good organizational skills not only help operations to become more efficient, but they also lead to more effective outcomes. When former service members bring this mindset to the workplace, they can often drive productivity while producing work that is of a higher quality. Strong organizational skills also help companies to ensure that they have considered the full range of possibilities and developed contingency plans so that they have much less of a chance of being caught off guard.
4. Ready to Mentor
The approach to leadership in the military is highly personalized. Military leaders provide individualized feedback to team members to help them address weaknesses and capitalize on their strengths. Since veterans are accustomed to this sort of environment, they can often become excellent mentors in business settings. Frequently, mentoring in the business world involves a couple days of training at the start of a new position and then annual feedback. Since veterans realize how important it is to become invested in each member of a team, they will naturally contribute to the professional development of their employees.
The military ingrains a sense of loyalty in each of its service members. This quality is extremely beneficial in the business world because it translates into commitment and reliability on many different levels. Veterans are loyal to the individuals they oversee and will not leave people behind. In addition, former service members demonstrate loyalty at the organizational level. Business owners can trust that veterans will always have the best interests of the organization at heart and will work diligently to achieve success. When challenges appear, veterans will not run away.
When people are in active duty, they need to communicate orders as directly and concisely as possible. Communication is extremely important in dangerous situations, as it can mean the difference between life and death. Veterans understand the importance of communication, and they have experience in issuing orders that are direct and not easily misinterpreted. This skill means that they can clearly explain expectations to their employees. Moreover, veterans take orders well and carry them out with precision. When giving direction to veterans, business owners can trust that they will listen and deliver.
Veterans are accustomed to high-pressure situations. The military trains people not only to handle stress, but to thrive under it. As a result, former service members will not fold when they face difficult situations. Employees with military training make immediate decisions based on their understanding of a situation and brace for what is to come next. This sort of confidence is not something that can easily be taught in the civilian world, but, importantly, it can be transferred to other employees. Veterans can set a perfect example of how to respond to high-stress situations in an effective manner rather than become frozen in indecision.