Resource Type:


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Koch Industries


State: Kansas

Zip: 67201

So, you’re ready to join the civilian ranks. Now what? Use the following tips to get prepped for this new challenge.

Despite 33 years of service to our nation, – including multiple combat and peacekeeping tours – my transition into the private sector was one of the most difficult periods in my life. As an honorable soldier, though, I conducted an after-action review to capture my lessons learned. A summary of my notes is presented in this transition guide so that you might benefit and enjoy an easier transition into your new career.

I began my transition woefully unprepared for the challenges that awaited me. I was wildly shooting resumes downrange in hopes of hitting an unseen target – a blind, Kentucky windage-style approach.
I received no feedback in return. It wasn’t until I put structure to my problem and began using military problem-solving tools that my performance and results improved. Sun Tzu, a military strategist and philosopher, became my guide:

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.”
– Sun Tzu

I realized to achieve success in my transition “war” I needed to properly prepare for combat. So, I studied the “enemy” (the recruiter), their methods of war (the application process) and myself (by defining my own career interests). Soon, I stood victorious.

“I will never leave a fallen comrade!” – Warrior Ethos

The Warrior Ethos, the principles that define my values, was the driving force behind the development
of this guide. I won my transition battle, and I knew I had to turn around to help the next transitioning military veteran. I hope these tips will help you endure the rigors of your transition and lead you to an overwhelmingly successful career in the private sector.

“Charlie Mike,”

John Buckley
Koch Outreach Strategies Manage

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