Interview Tips for Veterans

Interview Tips for Veterans

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Interview Tips for Veterans

Taylor Karl

Navigating a job interview can be stressful, even more so if you are out of practice and re-entering life as a civilian. Serving in the military is a lifestyle and transitioning back to the civilian workforce can introduce several challenges. With the help of veterans who have made that shift, we have compiled several pieces of advice so you can better prepare for your next interview.

Acronyms

The military is known for using acronyms as a chosen language. Though acronyms are used heavily in shorthand typing in civilian life acronyms have a high chance of being either misunderstood or not understood at all. Make sure to fully explain any military terms that come up in the interview and never assume that the person interviewing you is familiar with military language. We would also recommend avoiding the use of military acronyms on your resume.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Entering the civilian workforce may force you to completely change your way of thinking, speaking, and lifestyle. Practicing how to translate your skills from the military to civilian terms with a family member, mentor, or friend can be extremely beneficial. Work on your approach and how you want to answer certain questions related to your past experience. Practicing these answers can build confidence and make you feel more prepared for your interview.

Don’t Try to Be Perfect

Your next interview will not introduce a life-or-death situation. Certainly, those with military experience have lived through more pressure-packed moments than the common job interview. Don't let the pressure of the moment impact your performance. Remember that it's important to put the best version of yourself on display and to be comfortable with the idea that perfection is unattainable. Every job interview - even the unsuccessful ones - provide more experience to learn from so that you can continue to improve.

Emphasize Your Dedication to Your Work

Chances are that when you made the commitment to enroll into the military, most others at your age hadn't even thought about what college they were going to attend. You followed up that decision and sacrificed years of your life to serve our country. That level of commitment, dedication, and loyalty speaks volumes and communicating those traits during the interview will win you points. Companies want individuals who will stay and grow with them. This is your chance to show off those qualities you have gained from the military.

Takeaways

Jumping into the civilian workforce doesn't have to feel impossible. The right tools can help you navigate the waters. Be sure to practice your questions and answers so that you walk into your next interview confident and ready to perform.

Still need direction on how to translate your military skills to the civilian workplace? Check out our blog post on how you can transition to mainstream employment.

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