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Top 20 Tips for Transitioning Military Veterans

Top 20 Tips for Transitioning Military Veterans

Transitioning from military service to the private sector can be a challenging process. The private sector operates differently than the military, so it's important to understand the expectations and culture of the company you're interested in. To help military veterans make a successful transition, here are twenty tips to consider:

  1. Understand the civilian workplace culture: The civilian workforce operates differently than the military, so it's important to understand the expectations and culture of the company you're interested in.

  2. Highlight your transferable skills: Identify how your military experience translates into the private sector and highlight those skills in your resume and cover letter.

  3. Focus on your strengths: Don't shy away from discussing your military experience and how it has prepared you for a career in the private sector.

  4. Network with other veterans: Connect with other veterans who have successfully made the transition to the private sector.

  5. Consider pursuing further education: Further education and training can help bridge the gap between military experience and the civilian job market.

  6. Seek out mentorship: Look for mentors who can provide guidance and support throughout your transition to civilian life.

  7. Prepare for the transition: Begin planning and preparing for your transition well in advance of your separation date.

  8. Seek out veteran-friendly employers: Many employers have initiatives to hire veterans, so research companies that are known to be veteran-friendly.

  9. Be open to different career paths: Consider alternative career paths that align with your skills and interests.

  10. Attend job fairs and networking events: Attend job fairs and other networking events to meet potential employers and learn about different industries. Read our Job Fair Tips - Before, During, and After to set yourself up for success!

  11. Tailor your resume to the job: Customize your resume to the job you are applying for, emphasizing your relevant skills and experiences. See our article 18 Things to Leave Off Your Resume to help you out!

  12. Practice your interviewing skills: Practice interviewing techniques, including mock interviews and role-playing exercises.

  13. Build a professional network: Use social media to build a professional network and connect with potential employers.

  14. Leverage your military benefits: Take advantage of military benefits, such as the GI Bill, to pursue education and training.

  15. Seek out career counseling: Consider working with a career counselor or job placement service to help you identify and pursue career opportunities.

  16. Be prepared to negotiate: Negotiate salary and benefits with potential employers, and be prepared to compromise. If you don't know where o start, our Mastering Salary Negotiation article will help build your confidence! 

  17. Build a strong personal brand: Build a strong personal brand by creating a professional website, LinkedIn profile, and other social media profiles.

  18. Stay positive and resilient: The job search process can be challenging, but it's important to stay positive and resilient throughout the process.

  19. Keep your security clearance current: If you have a security clearance, keep it current to increase your employability. If you don't currently have one check our Guide to Obtaining a Security Clearance or 10 Tips for Obtaining a Clearance

  20. Follow up with potential employers: Follow up with potential employers after interviews to express your continued interest in the position and to thank them for their time.