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Veterans' Workplace Challenges

Instructor: Artem Cheprasov

Artem has a doctor of veterinary medicine degree.

In this lesson, we go over some of the challenges that veterans face when entering the civilian workplace. These challenges can be divided roughly into ones their employers may see and those the veterans see.

Veterans' Workplace Challenges

Many corporations actively spend significant portions of their hiring budgets on recruiting veterans. However, some challenges remain, including those from an employer's perspective and those from a veteran's perspective. In this lesson, we go over some of them as they pertain to the workplace.

From the Perspective of Employers

Employers may see potential (even if they are highly stereotyped or inappropriate) challenges to hiring a veteran. They may not see a skillset that can be applied to a specific job. This could be something very broad, such as the lack of a formal degree. It could also be more specific, like the inability to understand how a military skillset can be used in a civilian role.

An employer may also not see how a veteran can fit into corporate culture. For example, a corporate culture that has decentralized management is quite different from the hierarchical nature of military order and chain of command.

Other challenges the employer might see include:

  • A risk of deployment, especially to a small business with very few employees.
  • Having to deal with an anger-prone, rigid, and overly formal employee.
  • Mental health challenges, such as PTSD.

On the last note, things like PTSD, post-traumatic stress disorder, and TBI, traumatic brain injury, are very real consequences of military service. However, their prevalence is highly exaggerated and stereotyped in civilian life. This is also true for many of the other perceived challenges. As a result, it's unfortunately the responsibility of the veteran to try and explain, if they feel it's necessary, why the challenges some civilian employers may see above are either exaggerated, unfounded, or easily remedied.

From the Perspective of Veterans

Veterans themselves face their own challenges once they enter the civilian workforce. Some of the biggest challenges include a lack of an established network with the workforce, a difficult time deciding what career to take on in civilian life, and properly translating their skillset to the workplace.

Other challenges veterans may face within the workplace itself include:

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