Military service equips individuals with valuable training, experience and skills. And while some service members know exactly what they want to do in civilian life, most have an incomplete understanding of the full range of appealing jobs and careers into which they could transition. So it’s worth spending some time exploring your options.
Naturally, some thoughtful reflection on your military service, other work experiences, training, skills, strengths, interests, favorite (and least favorite) jobs, ambitions and lifestyle preferences will lead you to solid ideas about the types of jobs and careers you would like to pursue after leaving the military. You should also be open to new opportunities that are different from your current job.
Some career-focused conversations can also help you identify the most desirable civilian careers. For example, contacting former commanding officers or military colleagues who have already left the service can lead to especially insightful conversations about civilian job options and the opportunities that might suit you best.
One of the most common mistakes that departing military members make is to accept a limited view of their job and career options. Skills acquired while serving in one role in the military may equip you for a wide variety of jobs in the civilian world.
For example, a member of a military motor pool doesn’t have to limit their job search or career planning to automotive or transportation companies. Their mechanical skills may make them great matches for jobs at manufacturers, heavy equipment companies, construction companies, shipping/distribution companies and other businesses focused on machinery.
Similarly, any individual who has been involved in the boundless logistics of the U.S. armed forces could be well suited to careers in Maryland’s large and flourishing cargo and distribution sector. Think of the activities of the Port of Baltimore, Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport or the growing number of distribution centers – such as Amazon, UnderArmour and Rite Aid – along the I-95 corridor.
Search widely for career options. There are more suitable and desirable opportunities than you think.
Assorted services and websites can enhance this process with tools that assess your interests, skills and work values in order to propose potentially suitable and desirable careers.