The parties have ended, the tassels have been hung with the diploma, it's the time when recent grads are eagerly beginning the newest phase in their lives: The so-called "real world." Among other things, this real world typically requires the approximately 1,744,000 bachelor's degree graduates to find a job.
In the same light, many returning veterans will also be embarking on their own job search. Though their search may have more obstacles, both college grads and veteran job seekers have a lot of similarities, especially when it comes to succeeding in the job search. Let's explore some of these:
Strong alumni network
A strong alumni network is key. In fact, many job seekers will use their alumni networks in their job search. While these networks may be different -- a college grads network may consist of former students, while a veterans network may consist of past troop members -- they're still incredibly beneficial.
Why it's an asset for both groups: A strong alumni network serves the same purpose for both groups, such as the ability to cultivate, maintain, and then leverage a network that has a common bond.
Having the right types of transferrable skills is necessary in the job search. Think of it as killing two birds with one stone. An employer will typically hire a candidate who can cover the most ground, so the more skills you have, the better.
Why it's an asset for both groups: Your transferrable skills can be applied in a variety of settings and to a variety of jobs, upping your value as a college grad or a veteran job seeker. For instance, veterans may have gained ample leadership skills during their time in the military. Conversely, a college grad may have technical writing experience. Both of these can be used in different situations, no matter what the job is.
A foundation to build a career
We all have different foundations: A college grad may have invested their time into their education, while a recent veteran may have cultivated their professional background through a cause. It's all about how you use your foundation in your job search and beyond.
Why it's an asset: Both college grads and veterans have invested a certain amount of time in themselves, which typically results in additional skills, a broader network, and a heightened knowledge of their space. This foundation allows them to be better professionals -- and helps them amount to what they truly could be.
Ability to work in varying situations
College grads and veterans certainly have the ability to work well in varying situations. For instance, a college grad may have been faced with multiple classes, internships, or jobs all at once. Veterans may have had to work in different countries, time zones, and with a variety of people.
Why it's an asset: Both instances test your ability to work well under different circumstances, no matter how hectic those may be, showing your strength as a worker, candidate, and of course, potential employee.
Desire to conquer the world
One of greatest similarities between veteran job seekers and college grads is the desire to conquer the world. Many veterans and college grads see the world as their oyster -- and rightly so. They've had enough experiences to know anything is possible if you have the right plan, skills, and motivations.
Why it's an asset: A healthy desire is a main driver to go after what you want, whether you're a returning veteran from years of duty or a freshly minted college grad with a diploma in hand.
Veteran job seekers and college grads have a lot more in common than you may have thought--and these similarities are why both great employees...and even better professionals.
What do you think? What are some other things veteran job seekers and college grads have in common?
Sudy Bharadwaj is a co-founder and the CEO of Jackalope Jobs, a platform that helps job seekers find a job via their social networks. Learn how Sudy and Jackalope Jobs obsess over job seekers by connecting with them on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter.
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