MSL 09 Nov 2017 // 8:38PM GMT
On this Veterans Day, as we take the opportunity to reflect on the brave individuals who have served in our military and the sacrifices they have made to keep us safe and protect our interests around the globe, we should also pause to think about the unique skills veterans possess, and the opportunity we have as a nation to harness that incredible training and knowledge across industries.
The private workforce often overlooks how the skills that military vets have transfer to industry. Leadership, communications, operational rigor, decisiveness—all part of a service member’s day-to-day life—are the skills we seek in business.
Many companies have made a focused commitment to hire veterans. They recognize the skills military personnel—from enlisted to officers—possess. The Home Depot, a company we’re proud to work with, committed to hiring 55,000 veterans over five years, and reached that goal two years early. But while certain industries immediately draw the parallels between military service and their business, others don’t naturally see the connection.
And when I look at the communications industry, there’s a dearth of military veterans in our ranks.
Our industry in particular has often looked for talent too narrowly, focusing on candidates currently within the communications arena. In doing so, we can easily miss how someone from a seemingly unconnected career path could be the ideal fit for us.
When we talk about the importance of increasing diversity in communications, this includes individuals of different race, religion, ethnicity, gender and sexual orientation. It also includes diversity of background or region. Veterans bring unique life experiences to their post-military careers, experience that simply put most of us do not have. This ensures more diversity of thought in all of the work that we do. And more diverse workforces ultimately lead to better business results.
There’s an incredible opportunity before us. Hiring more veterans into the communications industry will bring enormous value to the work we do. As part of our work with our client USAA, we are striving to increase the number of military veterans within our teams. We will be taking the lessons from this experience to expand our efforts more broadly within MSL and Publicis.
What if this year, along with honoring our veterans for their service, communications leaders also commit to tapping into this great resource of talent and actively recruit more veterans into the industry? Veterans have certainly earned our gratitude, but they also deserve our consideration.
If you’re a veteran and would like to learn about careers at MSL click here.
By Keith Strubhar, Senior Vice President, MSL Washington, D.C.