We just finished honoring our servicemen and women, current and past, alive and deceased, last week. It is what we do annually in this country. For one day we honor the men and women who decided to stand up for this country and place themselves in harm’s way so that Americans and those who do not live in freedom may do so.
But one day is not enough. Honestly, there are not enough days in a lifetime to give them their due praise. I have yet to make a visit to Washington D.C. in which I haven’t gone to the Vietnam Memorial and say hello to some of my fallen heroes.
But this is about more. This is about what you might be able to do. If you have any employment openings in your business today or in the future, you will do yourself and others in your company a great service by hiring the men and women returning to civilian life after their service to their country.
I used to have conversations with someone close to me while at Pioneer about the character difference of those in our company who had a military service background and those who did not. This is not to say that if you have not served in the military you were not as good an employee as those who have. Not at all. But there was that little differentiator between the two groups. A different confidence and work ethic that was always one shade of color different and brighter than the rest.
What is it you will get when you decide to hire a vet for your business? Will you find someone with the exact experience for the job you are looking to fill? Possibly not if you hire a recent vet. But you might just find someone like that soldier in the infantry division who stuck his head in a dark hole in the earth one hot desert afternoon, not knowing what was on the other side. Instead of a booby trap or bullets, he found Saddam Hussein. He found him because he clearly knew what the mission was and the small part he played to achieve its success. He knew it was his task to put his head in that hole.