So the news from the Labor Department this morning was
characteristically glum: No jobs were added to the U.S. economy in August. None.
The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 9.1 percent, and that’s not very festive
news going into the Labor Day weekend.
Aren’t you glad you’re a military veteran?
Your service to our nation gives you a distinct advantage over your
civilian peers. It’s true. Yes, the unemployment rate for Post-9/11 veterans is
slightly higher than the civilian rate – 9.8 percent in August compared to 9.1
percent. But when you set aside all of the returning veterans who opt to
collect unemployment compensation while they take a breather from the lively ops
tempo they’ve endured, the rate is probably lower than the civilian population.
Consider this fact: The unemployment rate for ALL veterans
18 and older in August was 7.7 percent. That’s not a statistical hiccup. It’s a
consistency that almost always gets overlooked by the mainstream media in its rush to point out the jobless numbers for one select group of veterans. In
fact, the unemployment rate for all veterans has been lower than non-veterans
every year since 2000.
That means that once veterans enter the work force –
after they take a breather, after they earn a college degree, after they look unsuccessfully
for a job in Hometown USA – they excel.
Why? Is it because flag-waving companies go out of
their way to hire veterans in gratitude for their service? Is it because the
government is doing such a good job connecting veterans to the job market?
Nope. What makes you a prime target for hiring
managers at companies as varied as The Home Depot, Deloitte, BNSF Railway, GE
and URS are the intangible skills that made you a good Soldier,
Sailor, Marine, Airman, Coast Guardsman, National Guardsman or Reservist:
leadership, teamwork, discipline, adaptability and a never-quit attitude. Regardless
of the job, these qualities translate to a good Return On Investment (ROI) for companies.
So take advantage of that advantage. Get out there
and find that dream job, get hired and then excel. May you enjoy many Happy