“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” John F. Kennedy
Since the attacks of Sept 11, 2011 almost 3 million American men and women have answered our nation’s call to arms to defeat what came to be known as Al Qaeda and those associated with it. Now after over ten years of war almost 1.4 million who deployed overseas have returned to our communities.
But more than 850,000 veterans of all generations remain unemployed. The jobless rate for vets sits at about 12.1 % vs.8.7% for the non-veteran population. Over the next 5 years over 1 million more veterans are projected to leave the military.
How our nation treats its returning veterans says a lot about our gratitude for their service and the respect we have for the skills they have acquired.
The majority of skills that veterans have acquired are directly transferrable to the civilian sector. However many veterans fail to market themselves effectively. Oftentimes the terminology may be a bit different, and translating military acronyms that describe a soldiers experience is a struggle for some. But whether you are a machinist, information technology specialist, MRAP driver, or financial management technician- these skills do translate to the civilian sector.
Companies that hire vets have a competitive advantage.
The challenging economy and repressed job market presents an opportunity for employers to hire veterans who are well trained, disciplined, team players who know how to work under stressful conditions. The American Jobs Act also includes significant tax credits for businesses that hire veterans, particularly those that have service connected disabilities. Organizations like IAVA empower veterans and business to bridge the gap from military service to successful civilian employment.
This Veteran’s Day pause to honor and thank a veteran for their service.
Then hire a veteran.
Carey Lohrenz is the author of the Wall Street Journal Best Seller “Fearless Leadership: High-Performance Lessons from the Flight Deck.”, a motivational speaker and leadership expert.
Carey has flown missions worldwide as a combat-mission-ready United States Navy F-14 Tomcat pilot. Her extensive experience operating in one of the world’s most challenging environments, an aircraft carrier, and her unique position as one of the first female combat pilots make her the perfect opening or closing inspirational keynote speaker for your corporate meeting or conference.
Carey graduated from the University of Wisconsin where she was a varsity rower, also training at the Pre-Olympic level. After graduation, she attended the Navy’s Aviation Officer Candidate School before starting flight training and her naval career. She is the mother of four kids, and is currently working on her Master’s in Business Administration in Strategic Leadership.