The term ‘influencer’ has been a hot topic on the ActiveCare blog lately. We’ve given you great tips on how to climb your company’s social and leadership ladder. We’ve talked with workplace relationship experts about how to build trust with your compadres. This week, though, we’d like to steer you toward some of the top influencers in the game – the men and women who have been asked to craft original content for LinkedIn and post their influential writings on the most visible career networking site on the internet.

What better place to start than with an informative, persuasive and emotional piece about why more companies should hire veterans? After all, Tuesday is Veterans Day and chances are you know at least one of these brave souls who have served our country valiantly.

 Cesar Nader, a United States Marine for more than twenty years, ten of which he spent as an officer, champions hiring veterans across all industries. He’s currently the Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer, of X Corp Solution, Inc., a Virginia-based management consulting firm. Nader has created a transition program that he shares on LinkedIn that aims to offer a well-rounded and holistic process to help service men- and women move from active military personnel into employed military veterans.

Some big business names are already taking notice. Starbucks’ CEO has pledged to hire 10,000 veterans and their spouses within five years. Other companies, like Amazon, General Electric and Uber, are making it their mission to help the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation reach its ‘Hiring Our Heroes’ goal of 500,000 commitments before 2014 wraps.

Cesar eloquently states three qualities that make veterans ideal hires. Without stealing all of Cesar’s thunder, here’s some excerpts from his LinkedIn article, ‘Why Great Companies Hire Veterans,’ which has already been shared more than 3,000 times!

Veterans are adaptable...The experiences that made these veterans survive combat are the very skills that provide an island of calm in a sea of uncertainty. As a company goes through financial ups and downs, manpower restructure and enterprise shaping, veterans are the gatekeepers of a team’s stability and successful survivability through those periods of realignment. Veterans focus on the mission and the welfare of the troops. This makes them natural leaders at any level…

Veterans are resilient. From the moment a young civilian is brought into the ranks as a recruit, they learn to overcome fear, uncertainty, pain, exhaustion, chaos and the ever present desire of just giving up. Through resilience, they learn that when all the chips are down, you must continue to march, continue to push yourself forward, putting one foot in front of the other. In business, resilience proves some companies are more worthy than others…

Veterans are loyal… Ask any company what is their biggest cost and they will tell you Employee salaries and compensation packages. Some companies try to reduce this liability by cutting pay or reducing the force. Great companies double down on veterans. Attrition is the enemy of Great. Reduction in competent professionals (veterans or non-veterans) can set a company back. The loyalty veterans pledge to their employers is the one trait employers cannot afford to lose.”

Hiring veterans is still considered a challenge in some circles, though. The most common critiques are:

  • skill transitioning
  • fear of rigidity
  • lack of understanding of military’s hierarchy and what constitutes a high-performing position
  • concern about leaving for deployments
  • fear of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

There is a way to collectively combat the challenges that veterans and employers both feel. This Washington Post blog post makes a clear, concise argument that both sides need to step up:

“Business leaders will need to do more to educate themselves about military culture, language and jobs. And veterans will need to learn how to better translate their skills appropriately to civilian life. But the biggest onus may be on the leadership of the Department of Defense. As the CNAS report suggests, they are the ones who can create a voluntary resume bank for veterans that can be accessed by employers, helping to resolve a complaint that a quarter of the companies had — they don’t hire more veterans because they have a hard time finding them.” 

We know there are some awesome success stories out there and we’d love to hear about them.

Veterans – how did you land your first gig after hanging up your uniform?

Employers – do you have a standout former military member who’s now a standout among your ranks?

Share your story below.

Finally, thank you to all the men and women who serve, and who have served, our country so generously. We are grateful for your sacrifice. Have a blessed, safe, and happy Veterans Day.

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