How To Apply Military Leadership Skills To Civilian Employment

The application of military leaderships skills by veterans in civilian employment can result in high performance and a solid work ethic. Military personnel are some of the best trained and most experienced members of the modern workforce, and acknowledging that their military training and career advancement can help them reach their full potential in the private sector. Soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines are able to see both sides of leadership, of leading and being led. Here are five aspects of military leadership skills that apply to civilian employment:


1. The Best Training

In the military branches, leadership qualities are formed in a progressive, sequential series. The carefully planned training, education and immersive events are far more time-consuming and expensive than similar training at a university or in industry. Military training has evolved over decades of on-site trial and research with tax-backed funding now in the trillions. No other business leadership course in the nation can match such resources.

2. High Responsibility At Low Levels

Many leaders are positioned throughout the levels of the military. No matter the size or scale of the task at hand, these leaders strive for the best results and perform at the peak of their abilities. The military sets a high standard of work and motivation even in its lowest echelons, especially in its most trying circumstances.

3. Avoidance Of Micromanagement

Much of the general population think of military leaders as ever-present task masters, barking direct orders down to the detail. However, boot camp aside, the modern military embodies the complete opposite of this rationale. Personnel are briefed to establish a clear understanding of their objectives with delegation of responsibility down the chain of command. Leaders are required to understand and acknowledge that those on the front lines can perform and adapt to situations, and must work independently when necessary.

4. Willing Vs. Complying

When joining the military, recruits take an oath of service and self-sacrifice. When serving a cause they believe in, they will serve with a willingness to do so and will not simply comply just to get the work done. They serve a cause because they believe in a cause, not just for a paycheck and benefits. Those who faced life-threatening situations and events were motivated by the cause they served and not by any reward or punishment. The degree of dedication is something seldom found elsewhere.

5. Focus

All veterans will tell you that military service requires and strengthens high levels of focus in its personnel, especially those veterans who have seen active combat. The training of focusing on the task at hand in high-stress and life-threatening situations provides veterans a high level of tolerance for dealing with deadlines and working under pressure. They are also able handle long hours and maintain focus during unexpected situations. These five strengths provide valuable insight into the efficiency, delegation, and execution of successful leadership. For those veterans who are returning from duty and looking to adapt their skills to civilian life, they can integrate effectively by realizing that they have what it takes to be leaders in the private sector.
This article was written by Social Media Outreach Coordinator Joshua John on behalf of CAREEREALISM-Approved Partner, 2tor — an education technology company that partners with institutions of higher education such as the University of Southern California which provides a Masters in Military Social Work
Photo Credit: Shutterstock

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