In this video, Spencer Milo, Ben Harrow, and Jared Shepard discuss a recurring issue seen when working with transitioning veterans—a sense of entitlement. The military and civilian world have this in common—you must prove your worth. Jared stresses the importance using your service as a tool—and not as a crutch. Ben and Jared also warn veterans to be wary of false promises.
- One of the biggest that I deal with, with veterans transitioning, one of the biggest struggles I see, is the sense of entitlement. I cannot tell you how many veterans I have spoken to to include myself at one point, it felt like we were owed something because we rose our hand and we served this country. Piece of advice, nobody owes you anything. Seriously, nobody owes you anything. Is it nice to get some respect, yeah.
Is it nice for people to be appreciative, of course it is. But ultimately you rose your hand to give everybody else the ability to tell you that they don't care what you did. You gave them that right and that's what you fought for. So don't hold it against people if they don't think they owe you something. - I do think some veterans come out in the military thinking that there's all these doors lined up because you're kind of fed these stories about everyone wants to hire veterans which is true, a lot of people want to hire veterans.
But you still have to prove yourself just like we did in the military. You know as a Special Forces guy I came from a unit where you went through a selection to get into the unit well that means that there's a selection process, you can still be selected to leave the unit. So everyday you're being assessed and everyday you have to prove your worth and I think to go into the civilian workforce thinking that's not the case you're doing yourself a disservice. - The military is a brotherhood and a sisterhood. It's a group of people who have common understanding, have shed blood, sweat, and tears together.
And we'll never forget that. It's a part of our lives that will be defining, but it doesn't have to define us. Don't use your service as a crutch. Don't use the fact that you served as a limitation. Instead use it as a tool. Use it as something that you can leverage to move forward. - I've been around long enough to understand that none of us really joined so we could be gifted things later on in life. That was never the reason. I'm going to raise my hand and then when I get done with the military people are going to owe me stuff and that's why I'm going to do it.
That's not why any of us did it. So don't let that run what you're doing now don't let that pop into your head that you feel like you're owed things. Personally, I appreciate what you did and I say thank you for that, but that's where it ends you know. If someone comes up to you in the airport and says hey thank you for your service, rather than being annoyed by it or upset that someone did that, just say thanks. They may not know any other way other than show their appreciation by saying thank you.
Let them have that. And if someone doesn't give you the time of day because of it well move forward. That's 99% of this country. I can tell you that there's a whole lot of other people that you know aren't going to feel that way. So don't think people owe you stuff, just work for everything you get. You did it in the military you worked for everything you ever gave, everything you ever got in the military you worked for. Continue to do that in the civilian world, don't feel like you're owed something and move forward.
- A word of caution and advice for you, there are going to be times when people come up who are completely patriotic at heart and they mean all the best in the world and they're going to offer you things simply because of your service. When people start promising you jobs or opportunities that proof is in the pudding, a lot of people talk but they don't walk the walk. And I think at the end of the day they have to be able to show some sort of good faith, whether that comes in an actual contract and salary or showing you something but a lot of people out there want to use you for your military experience and don't want to properly compensate you for your military experience.
- Those offers, although I'm not telling you you shouldn't explore them, don't rely upon them. Don't make an offer like that your plan. Be prepared to go look and hunt for something on your own. Opportunities will come where somebody may help you skip a step but nobody gives you the whole path for free.
Discover how to understand your strengths and value, where your skills fit into today's job market, and how to translate your experience into a solid resume. Learn how a mentor can help you navigate the transition and open up new opportunities. With Flo's advice, you can find a new purpose and continue the journey you started in the military—bringing your talents to bear on a whole new mission in life.
- Taking initiative
- Understanding your value
- Translating your experiences
- Building your resume
- Using a mentor
- Setting realistic expectations
- Building a network
- Transitioning into a new job
- Bonus videos featuring stories of transition from veterans