Veterans can be a valuable asset to your company. Due to the team-oriented military work culture, veterans are more likely than the average civilian to work well on a team. Hiring a veteran is a great way to thank them for their service. However, the military work culture is different from the private sector. Veterans may need some help adjusting to civilian work culture. Here is how your company can support your veteran employees.
You can support veterans by promoting a workplace environment that has aspects similar to their old job. This will give them a sense of familiarity. One way you can do this is by encouraging teamwork. The military has a strong focus on teamwork, even having done extensive scientific research for over 60 years on the subject. The teamwork will benefit your company as well, as it leads to more effective work, a positive workplace environment, accountability, and a learning environment. A learning environment is especially helpful for veterans who may not know how the private sector operates yet. This is because they can learn how things operate from their coworkers.
Lay Out a Plan for Growth
The private sector and the military differ in terms of career advancement. In the military, career progression is more clearly laid out so that the personnel know what to expect in order to move up the career path. The private sector is less predictable, and veterans may feel confused about what they need to do to grow their careers. Giving veteran employees clear objectives to reach for career advancement will help them know how to perform a better job and move up the ladder.
Participation in an Affinity Group
Veterans may feel more comfortable having a group where they can relate to their coworkers. Nobody will understand their needs better than people who have had similar experiences. New hires will be able to learn how to readjust to the private sector from their veteran coworkers. It will make veterans feel as though they belong to the company if there are others like themselves, too. This feeling of belonging has been found to increase job performance, lower turnover risk, and reduce sick days.