On this Veterans Day, I'd like to honor our veterans and share the important work that Veterans Career Xchange is doing for those that have served. Thank you to each of our veterans who have served this nation - I honor you and the many sacrifices you have made. The privileges and freedoms I enjoy are due to your sacrifices.
It has always been important to me to give back to my community. In particular, I have had a pull to give back to those who have served. I feel fortunate, as I have found an organization that is run by a veteran and whose mission is to serve veterans. Veterans Career Xchange, a non-profit organization, provides no-cost career coaching for veterans and their immediate families. Conceived and led by Mark Brenner, this agency assists former military members in preparing for and conducting a job search.
Mr. Brenner, CEO of Veterans Career Xchange and a veteran himself, formed the organization because he felt there was a gap in the existing resources that assist veterans in finding employment. He emphasizes the importance of assisting veterans in obtaining work at a living wage or, he explains, they could end up seeking government assistance or even become homeless. Through a structured approach to the job search, Mr. Brenner and his small team of coaches help veterans, on an individual basis, prepare for and get jobs in the careers they have identified.
In less than two years, the organization has helped almost 300 veterans and their families in their job searches. With a success rate of 82 percent of the coaching clients obtaining work, Mr. Brenner has a lot to be proud of. Although he has had many successes, one story stands out.
A veteran had completed her commitment to the Navy in a medical role. When she left the military, she quickly identified that medicine wasn't her chosen career. She went back to school and obtained an MBA from one of the top 10 business schools in the country. Upon graduation, she obtained a civilian job and was laid off after some time in the role. After an unsuccessful job search, she found Veterans Career Xchange and in her work with Mr. Brenner, she identified that she became very nervous in job interviews. Mr. Brenner worked with her to build her confidence, develop her interviewing skills, and prepare her for the job search ahead. She got the job she wanted, is earning a salary she's proud of, and gives back by donating to Veterans Career Xchange.
If a veteran is interested in working with Veterans Career Xchange, Mr. Brenner looks for one key element: commitment. He explains that looking for a full-time role is a full-time job, and the client must make a true commitment to the program to participate. He emphasizes the importance of networking, and includes networking in his 10 steps. He explains it's important to follow-up, but never become a pest. Of course, working with a coach helps the veteran maneuver through this process.
My appeal to each of you reading this: As Mr. Brenner says, "Give a veteran a chance." Find a way to help. I do so by providing pro bono coaching services to veterans through Veterans Career Xchange. You can help by donating, spreading the word or thanking a veteran today.
If you'd like to read more about Veterans Career Xchange and what Mark Brenner has to say this Veterans Day, check out his blog here.
Image source: Pixabay
My greatest joy is helping people make bold transitions in their professional and personal lives!