American firms spend billions on corporate training annually and $720 million on employee engagement. Hiring staff with strong skills in leadership and teamwork gives managers a head start when building teams, as many Indiana companies know. Indianapolis has many resources for vets and companies to connect, and one Indianapolis-area firm is crossing the state border to recruit even more.
“When companies hire veterans they are building their teams with strategic thinkers, highly disciplined in teamwork,” says David Lengyel of Venture Up Team Building in Indianapolis. “A veteran has been screened, trained and tested by the most powerful organization on the planet. When business teams make mistakes it can be costly, but when military teams fail it can be fatal,” he says. “Teamwork is serious business in the military. A veteran’s leadership and team skills are embedded for life.”
The U.S. Military also promotes veterans as well trained for corporate life. After a successful run in the military, veterans represent an ideal work ethich; they are hard-working, motivated and ethical. The U.S. Military details 10 good reasons to hire a vet:
- Accelerated learning curve: Veterans learn easily, saving time and increasing productivity.
- Leadership: Military staff exhibit many leadership styles. They lead by example, and through direction, delegation, motivation, and inspiration.
- Teamwork: A sense of team work in the engrained in everyday military life. Veterans are team players with an inherent responsibility to their fellow colleagues.
- Diversity and inclusion in action: Unlike many many corporate environments, the military reflects a wide range of diversity — people sharing differences in race, gender, sexuality, geographic origin, ethnic background, religion, economic status, as well as mental, physical, and attitudinal capabilities.
- Efficient performance under pressure: Deadlines and timing are serious business in the military, as they continually work with limited resources and tight time schedules. They work under stress and persevere until the job is done right.
- Respect for procedures: Veterans know how policies and procedures drive the success of an organization. They are accountable and know their place within an organizational framework.
- Technology and globalization: Worldly experience enables veterans to be familiar with and adaptable to international and technical trends in business and industry. A global outlook and technological savvy can bring welcome diversity to work teams where employees lack international or travel experience.
- Integrity: An honorable discharge reflects a track record of integrity, sincerity, and trustworthiness. Many veterans have also passed the rigors for security clearances.
- Conscious of health and safety standards: Veterans are trained in health and safety protocols for themselves and the welfare of others. They represent a healthy, fit and drug-free workforce, factors that translate to protecting employees, property, and materials from health or safety hazards.
- Triumph over adversity: Veterans frequently triumph over great adversity. Many have faced critical situations demanding endurance, stamina, and flexibility, and many, such as Wounded Warriors, thrive through strength and determination in overcoming disabilities.
Since 1983, Venture Up has delivered team programs for many government and military groups, including the Army Rangers, Navy Seals, groups of high ranking military and government leaders, the Secret Service and FBI. When working with private corporations, Lengyel finds many managers also have military training. “While MBA degrees are common in upper management, high ranking military status is another strong indicator of leadership skills,” Lengyel says. An MBA is a waste of money, according to billionaire Mark Cuban, a business graduate of Indiana University. He believes you can fill in your knowledge gaps with online courses and field experience.
Subaru Indiana Automotive is scouting veterans in Fort Campbell, KY for its assembly team north of Indianapolis. More than 10,000 vets work for GE, and one in 14 GE employees is a veteran. GE’s vision is to be the “employer of choice for veterans, reservists, and guardsmen,” via the GE Veterans Network, a far-reaching program involving communities nationwide and veterans’ support groups.
Aside from the Network, GE’s Transition Assistance Program delivers mentoring to vets in cooperation with the local Hiring our Heroes initiative, offered by local Chambers of Commerce. Seminars are designed to help military communicate and utilize their military skills to benefit the corporate world.
GE’s Military Employment Programs offer elite military officers two years of training in foundational leadership, including on-the-job and classroom training. GE has won many service awards, ranking consistently as a GI Jobs Top 100 Military-friendly Employer, Military Times’ Best for Vets Employer, and CivilianJobs.com’s Most Valuable Employer.
Jessica Genereaux is a business writer and independent marketing consultant. Connect with her on Linked-in.