• Joe Vandervest

Hiring Veterans can be a smart move.

Hiring military vets usually has benefits above and beyond merely supporting those who served, gave and sacrificed. 

I was recently reminded of this by our team’s performance on a recent client project.

A recently signed client wanted to migrate their email services and their email from one provider to another.

I asked, Jeff Warsinski, one of our newer team members to take the lead on this project.  Jeff had served in the US Air Force for a number of years and had been on a number of deployments.  He took the lead and made hay.

The migration went off without a hitch. All the various moving parts worked together. The timing of the team’s actions all happened at the right time. The email moved to the new accounts quickly and accurately. Email delivery didn’t miss a beat and the follow on support to ensure all devices, phones, tablets, etc. were properly configured and working correctly.

How did his military experience play into this success?  

Let’s put it this way: he and I established and agreed on the objective,  I made him the project lead, empowered him to make it happen, and gave him access to all the resources he might need to achieve the objectives.  Then -- I got out of the way. I flew cover for him - if he needed it, he’d call me in. I stood back and let his objective oriented military training take over.  He coordinated and worked with the team in a collaborative way and orchestrated a successful migration.

This vet was a trained and schooled non-commissioned officer (NCO). Do you know how much money the military invests in helping qualified soldiers become mission oriented leaders?  I don’t know the exact number - but it’s a fortune compared to what civilian companies spend on leadership training.

With vets you generally don’t have to worry about their sense of responsibility, accountability, and willingness to execute objective oriented directions.   

Veterans too know all about the need to document, record, share information, and be concerned for team objectives.

I’ve hired a number of vets over the years. They’ve all been outstanding performers, focused, collaborative and mission oriented. 

If you stack up all the things that vets learn while they serve, when you add up all of the team training and field experience that vets accumulate, and when you take a second look at hiring vets - you may find that hiring vets, especially NCOs, is a bargain.  

You will usually get a self-motivated, disciplined, mission oriented, team player right away.

Just because a vet may or may not have experience with the exact technology or system you need to hire for, you may find that the “soft” benefits of hiring a veteran, outweigh any technical training or spin up time you need to provide them.

Hiring new employees is often a crap shoot.  Improve your probabilities, take a second look at vets who apply.