By Lynne Williams
So exactly what is a veteran? “A veteran – whether active duty, discharged, retired or reserve – is someone who, at one point in his/her life, wrote a blank check made payable to the United States of America, for an amount of up to, and including, his/her life.” Thank you to John O’Brien, who shared this quote in a recent article in the Concord Monitor.
I am so very thankful for all the men and women who have served or are serving our country to protect our freedom. So, on Monday, November 11th, I will be giving a shout-out on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and … of course LinkedIn.
Did you know that LinkedIn gives veterans a premium subscription FREE for one year? This is to help them connect with jobs in their post-deployment and reintegration phase and can result in the good, the bad, and the ugly.
The bad and the ugly are that many vets have taken huge pay cuts in take-home pay, lose their free military healthcare, and have no more housing allowances. They take steps backward in their careers to work in low-paying, lower-status jobs where they are unable to utilize their experience and education.
George Anders wrote about a vet who stated that “People don’t know what to do with an infantry background.” This is very true that it is sometimes difficult for vets to civilianize their core competencies. It is equally difficult for corporate America to understand that vets truly lead with a mission-driven sense of purpose, thrive in teamwork, and shine with military-honed leadership skills and they should be considered to be viable candidates, sans prior corporate experience. They will adjust.
The good news is that, according to the US Department of Labor (DOL), 3.2% of veterans are currently unemployed as of September 2019. However, that is not including all six of the measures of unemployment; only the U3.
The DOL reports the U3 monthly, but the truth is that they should really take note of the U6. Shadowstats notes that the reality of unemployment with the U6 more like 21%, which is why the Philadelphia Area Great Careers Group (PAGCG) is growing in membership, as people need more resources and support while in career transition. The good news is that we welcome vets.
The PAGCG is delighted to have partnered with the Greater Philadelphia Veterans Network (GPVN) and provided a couple cohorts of vets with career education (resumes, LinkedIn, networking, elevator pitches, etc.) through some grant funding.
Both of our organizations are grateful to Penn State Great Valley along with the PSU alumni society and My Career Transitions for providing the beautiful space and extra volunteers for our last Veterans Career Information Panel and Dinner. We could not have done it without all the support and look forward to a repeat in 2020 at the Navy Yard location.
You can learn more about the status of the job market for veterans but, it should be no surprise that not all veterans want W-2 jobs, as many take the entrepreneurial route. The GPVN runs an annual Veterans Shark Tank and I got to attend the regional qualifier recently. Also, they also run a Veteran Business Referral Network (VBRN), which I have attended as a patriot and supporter of veterans.
I am also honored to have been asked to present a LinkedIn overview to three groups of the PA National Guard next month through Higher Ed Assist. They will get to hear why LinkedIn is so important for their career, whether they want to be an employee or pursue entrepreneurship.
If you want to see some LinkedIn profiles of veterans who have translated their core competencies into civilianized keywords (unless they intend to continue in the military), check these out: Andre McCoy, Patrick Montone, Peter Browne, Kenneth D’Aurizio, and Alex Pilkington (and watch his video resume too). A couple have jobs or have just landed jobs and another is seeking a new opportunity. If you want to hire a vet, reach out to me as I might have some referrals.
I will be thanking these vets and many others on Veteran’s Day on LinkedIn, so please feel free to share your gratitude also. There are a lot of regional veterans organizations who are members of the Delaware Valley Veterans Consoritum (DVVC) so thank all of them too.
Here are my special reminders should you wish to participate in any of these:
- It’s holiday season coming up and if you are shopping online, please shop on amazon.com and choose the Philadelphia Area Great Careers Group as your charitable nonprofit. It does not change your pricing and we receive a small stipend from Amazon as a 501(c)3.
- #GivingTuesday is coming up on December 3rd and you could help a jobseeker or veteran with a scholarship for $35 annual Bronze membership or other programming or help us with any capacity building donations through our donate button, we would be blessed. We are an all-volunteer organization and that includes me too!
Don’t miss our upcoming featured events. If you are a working adult, come learn and network with us. You must be a member of the meetup before you can RSVP to any of these events or our partner events and see the location and other details.
- 11/11/19 Micro-Disruption: Simple Change for Significant Results with Greg Offner
- 11/12/19 Ace Your Interview Through Strategic Storytelling with Matt Zaun
- 11/12/19 The Art of Networking in Person and Online with Linne Williams
- 11/12/19 Creating a Signature Elevator Speech with Rita Guthrie
- 11/12/19 Website Setup in Ten Steps with Tom Knoble
- 11/13/19 The Art of Networking in Person and Online with Lynne Williams
- How to Help Introverts Succeed in the Jobsearch & Marketplace with Jane Finkle
- 11/13/19 Virtual Zoom Career Support Group Meeting with Dominique Kliger, Ph.D.
- 11/14/19 PowerThinking Resilience Building Call-In with Stanley Greene
- 11/14/19 Meet the Author of “The Position Player” with Tom McManimon
- 11/14/19 Strategic Research-based Approaches to Linkedin – Lynne Williams
Need to accelerate your job search or manage your career? Explore our kickstarter offerings.
Missed the previous LinkedIn article on LinkedIn? Click here!
Lynne Williams is the Executive Director of the Philadelphia Area Great Careers Group, a 501(c)3 nonprofit of almost 4400 members providing career education and networking.
Contact Lynne by phone at 484-393-2951, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, on social media @GreatCareersPHL and #GreatCareersPHL and connect on LinkedIn at www.linkedin.com/in/lynnewilliams Check out the website!