Recognized by the U.S. government every year, November marks Veterans and Military Families Month, with Veterans Day falling on Nov. 11. During this month, the country honors the brave men and women and their families who have served or are continuing to serve our nation through increased awareness and support. In the lead up to November’s annual celebrations, it’s important to provide a broader perspective on how veterans can be invaluable assets to the job force.
Oftentimes, it can be difficult for employers to recognize the key experiences and transferable skills veterans acquire during their time of military service. This creates a deep knowledge gap between veterans entering the workforce and employers searching for top talent in their industries. One industry that stands out amongst the rest in terms of hiring veterans is the contracting and construction industry.
A total of 15.5% of all U.S. veterans will enter the construction industry at some point, and about 666,400 veterans are currently working in this field. These hard-working and determined individuals can contribute in an assortment of ways to this industry, bringing their military background of unique skillsets to an American workforce in dire need of productive workers.
If you are just finishing your service and are looking to change your career with a new job, take a look at three instances your unique skills can transfer to the contracting and construction industry.
Putting the Team First
When military personnel enter into the service, the majority of whom have just reached adulthood, they quickly learn the skills to be a good follower and obtain the experience to become a great leader. Through training, education and experiences, veterans take on a variety of roles and responsibilities. In the face of ever-changing and unpredictable situations, veterans are required to make quick and smart decisions as leaders, a parallel that translates to the fast-paced work environment.
Additionally, veterans have an innate, conscientious obligation to serve others. It’s this servant leadership philosophy that allows veterans to be selfless, putting the needs of teams first and acting towards improving the organization, rather than only themselves. These skills and characteristics are becoming increasingly more desirable among prospective employees as employers are looking for the ones who will take their business and the industry as a whole to the next level.
Easily Trainable, Adaptable and Determined
Veterans continuously learn, develop and grow from day one. As situations can change rapidly and without notice, veterans master adaptability and learn to improvise as their specific roles can be affected day to day. Adaptable and capable, veterans are quick learners with little that can faze them. Not to mention that veterans are persistent and determined, sticking with a problem or solution until results are achieved. An ongoing focus on development not only proves successful for the individual, but for their team and their organization as well.
Experience Working in a Diverse Team Setting
From the moment they enter the service, military veterans are taught that genuine teamwork derives from a responsibility to one’s peers. Being an ultimate team player is not taken lightly, as members must learn to think in terms of the greater good of the team and what they can do to improve, grow and strengthen it. A blend of individual and group responsibilities allows veterans to work side-by-side successfully with teammates of all backgrounds — regardless of gender, race, religion, economic status or geographic origin. As much of the job force is done with a team in a diverse workspace, veterans with vast teamwork experience are already ahead of the curve.
The contracting and construction industries are ready to welcome veterans like you (and me!). We bring these sets of dynamic traits from the military world that can transfer directly to the business world — and contracting/construction is no exception. With proper training and opportunities, veterans can and will continue to succeed in this business. What are you waiting for? Take the plunge and apply to a construction job today!