Saturday, 9 November 2013

Are You Shooting In Air Or Shooting On Target

Career Transition Tips # 5; The Importance of Focused Approach

In this five article series on career transition, we have already seen the importance of accepting the change from military to corporate ( click here), the overwhelming benefits of starting early in career transition ( click here) , the importance of doing self assessment ( click here ) and the value of networking ( click here) . In  this fifth and  last article, we will see  the importance of following a focused approach during career transition and the requirement of bridging the gap between the possessed skills and the required skills for a particular career to  find the right opportunity in the corporate world. Here, I would like to highlight upon a tendency or rather a practice that is generally followed across the board in military and that hinders our chances of finding the right career opportunity.  In military, The diversity and the varied nature of job allow you to qualify for a number of career options during transition; you can be  good in  administration, HR, or  security besides the technical field that many of us are mastered in. Therefore, most of us remain indecisive till the very end of our military career about which field is most suitable for us post retirement. On the contrary, in the corporate world, people have specializations in one specific field wherein they acquire skills pertaining to that field, do relevant certification courses, and acquire mastery of that specific field. Also, If a job opening is in field of HR,  the recruiters are looking for an individual who is competent in HR profile and the knowledge that one has of other domains such as security doesn’t have any weight-age or very less, if at all any, for these recruiters. In their language, for other domains, they have different people working and they are thus focused with the skill-set required for one particular domain only.

We may think that remaining flexible allows us to enter the corporate world with a number of options to choose from but the fact of the matter is sooner or later one has to make a decision as to which particular domain one wants to enter into and sooner we make the decision, better it is. Let’s understand with the help of an hypothetical example of two candidates as to why it is important to pick the right field early and thereafter apply efforts to become competitive in that field. Two years prior to retirement, Lt Col A did his detail self-assessment of skills, carried out analysis of various career opportunities available, matched his skills with various careers, seek professional help, and after adequate brain-storming over a period of time, decided that HR will turn out to be the most suitable career path for him. Thereafter, once decided, he  learned more about HR and contacted a few of his friends already in this field. He also networked with a few top professionals of the same field and realized what is necessary to fill the gap between his present skills and required skills for a competent profile in HR. He also studies the profile of a number of professionals in the field of HR and noted the common courses/certifications done by all.  Thereafter he crafted a road-map on how to be a competent job seeker in  HR profile ;a plan that included the skills required to be gained, certification courses needed to be done and knowledge required to attained. During his interaction with the senior HR professionals, he realized the importance of an MBA degree from a top b-school and hence decided to give GMAT well in advance,while in active service only. His profile on his resume and LinkedIn was also very much align with the chosen field of HR. He also joined a various HR specific groups on LinkedIn and actively participated in various discussions.  Whereas Lt Col B was  happy with the fact that he has a number of options to choose from and hence can apply for any job in the corporate world when he retires. He neither did any course or preparation for MBA nor gained  any specific knowledge pertaining to one particular field. He prepared a general resume from the available template resumes on web and uploaded that on various job portals and  his LinkedIn profile.
Out of Lt col A or Lt col B, whom do you think have better chances of a progressive career field. While candidate A adopted a very focused, tunnel approach , which is in line with the approach followed by  successful corporate professionals  in that field, candidate B adopted an extremely general approach and is ok with any opportunity that comes his way. In about 10 years time, it is highly likely that A has climbed from middle  management to top management whereas B has changed a few jobs and now feels stagnated in his profession.  It is extremely important to understand that , in today’s highly competitive world, planning for future career will do us no good until we have the necessary skills to compete for these jobs.  Until we decide which career we want to choose, it would be extremely difficult to gain skills required for that particular career.  Many  of you would be surprised to know that even b-schools are known for their specializations and hence if someone has chosen the field of consultancy, INSEAD has to figure in the chosen b-schools list, or  entrepreneurs would prefer to be in Babson. The corporate world demands that you be specific and specialized for one particular job; your familiarization with others is a secondary issue but the primary and the most important remains is your competency in one particular field.  

Even for candidate A , it is mandatory to remain current and up to date with the required competencies and therefore remain in learning mode through opportunities available in institution or through own endeavors for optimal performance in the current role and for any contingencies such as change of job. How can we afford to ignore the corporate requirement and remain convince with self-held opinion that it’s good to remain flexible till the very end and choose any field that comes our way.  For those who find it extremely difficult to choose which career path is most suitable, A better option would be to pursue an MBAdegree ( click here )from a top b-school immediately after your transition and decide there in b-school on which career path to be taken.
How did you find this five-article series, If  you liked the articles, kindly press the like button ( click here) and share with your friends for creating awareness among the military community and for empowering each one of us to confidently face the corporate world, helping in seamless transition from military to corporate.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Military Professionals - Are You Missing On Networking ?

Career Transition Tips # 4; The Power Of Networking

“Networking has turned out to be the most powerful tool for job hunting in the recent times”.

In this five 
articles series  on career transition, we have already seen the value of accepting the change of uniform from military to corporate( click here), the overwhelming benefits of starting early in  career transition( click here) , and the importance of knowing yourself ( click here). In this fourth article, we will see the advantages of networking and what best practices the retiring/retired military professionals can employ for a better career.

With the popularity of social and professionals platforms such as facebook and LinkedIn ,Networking has gained enormous importance in today’s time for finding the right job opportunity. The traditional method of meeting each other also hold the  importance though in today’s fast –paced environment , there is too little time for face-to-face socializing and networking. 
Military professionals aren't encouraged to take active participation on social platforms during their military service due to the services constrains. On the other side, Networking is an art which an individual learns gradually, spending time on these platforms and examining new techniques. Therefore, when a serving personnel is on the verge of retirement, his network is restricted to only his circle, which constitutes mostly military professionals, whereas he is stepping into a world which is full of corporate people, who are unfamiliar to him. Also, In the times of recession and gloomy economy, employers and recruiters just don’t want a bad hire and therefore they want to recruit someone whose referrals are available to them from a trustworthy contact. All this together places the military professional at a major disadvantage when it’s time for him to enter the corporate world.  A few practices can help military professionals in finding their dream job with less stress.

An account on these social platforms will mark your presence for further exploitation. A LinkedIn account is your mini-resume and hence gives a good glance of your profile. Make sure to complete your profile in all aspects as doing so increases your chances of meeting the eye of the recruiter. LinkedIn is used extensively by recruiters to find the suitable candidates for their companies. Make sure your profile has recommendations from your links or contacts.

If you have lost touch with your school or college friends who are in corporate, use facebook and LinkedIn to get in touch with them. Those friends  have been in corporate for long and can really help you not only  in understanding the corporate dynamics but also in finding a suitable job in corporate. Suppose your school days friend happens to be connected with the recruiter of the company that you would like  to work with, Your friend can act as the required link between you and the recruiter. Try to take out some time during your leave to connect with some of your friends in corporate.

The social platforms also have companies pages and following them may help you in finding the job openings in that particular company( For M2C’s company page, click here and here).

Once you've shortlisted the career that you’re interested in, you can join the domain specific groups to know the various practices,  and take part in discussion related to these groups. For example, if you’re interested in Aerospace and Defence industry, joining groups of this field will allow you to interact with professionals working in various Aerospace and Defence industries. You can even connect with them and seek their suggestion on how to make your profile stronger. Also once you actively participate in various discussions on these groups, you will start getting noticed by the industry people and you will find more and more people are viewing your profile. This way you increase your chances of your profile meeting the eye of the recruiter.

Once you’ve shortlisted 20-30 companies that you want to work with, you can use the search engine in LinkedIn  to know which all employees are from military in that company. For example you are interested in working with XYZ company  and you want to know the work culture and the environment from a ex-military professional working in that company, you may search with the company’s name and Indian army or Air force or Navy , you will get a list of military experienced professionals who have worked in the past or are working presently with the company. You can even be friend with them to get a lead for working with that company. The shared values of our past military profession allows an opportunity for us to connect with  other military professionals and help out each other.  

In this telescopic world, networking has become an essential job finding tool and a detailed understanding of the best practices in networking allows the exploitation of this tool to our advantage. Those who actively engage with other professionals face to face and also on social platforms will gain more than those who use only one of the two ways. Other related articleHow to exploit best out of networking sites
For more info, visit 

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Know The Machine Before You Start Firing

Career Transition Tips # 3; Know Thyself Before Choosing Right Career

In this five articles series, we have already explored the value of accepting the change of uniform from military to corporate( click here) and the overwhelming benefits of starting early for our career transition ( click here). In this third article, which is also written in the logical sequence of events during transition, we will understand what all we need to know about our-self  and what is the value in doing some homework on ourself  before we move onto finding the suitable career path for our second innings.

While many will contest this need of knowing our-self  with the statement that you've been living with yourself all life and no body knows you better than yourself and  therefore, you don’t require any discovery of yourself. The fact is that we don’t understand to the fullness who we are and what skills we have to offer. Many a times we would have come across so  many veterans who switch from one industry  domain to another on the pretext that a particular industry doesn't suit their requirements, however  they fail to first identify three issues i.e what do they like the most, what best they have to offer and which domain aligns the most with the first two requirements. The most suited industry for a person will have an environment and work requirement which is most align with skills and preferences of that person. Therefore, before we explore the web for the various career options, It’s mandatory that we do homework on our self. So what does this homework entails and how best we can do it? The answer to this question can possibly be found in answers  to a set of these five questions:-

Ø    Do you know your soft skills and hard or work content skills?

Ø    What you want to do for the rest of your life? Do you feel that you don’t want to join any hierarchical structure and you feel comfortable with independent work without any external interference? or Do you feel comfortable with hierarchical structure of the corporate organisations?

Ø   Do you know which work you like, and which you don’t and what are your favorite working conditions- team member/independent or isolation, field work/indoor work, geographical location such as urban/semi-urban/rural, weather condition in terms of cold/warm and so on ?

Ø    Are you a go –getter or you generally work at your own pace without time constrains?

Ø  Do you look forward to a busy, responsible and progressive career or you want a easy workplace having time for yourself and your family? Do you want to earn lots of money or you are happy with a limited amount?

Once you will sit down to write answers to these questions, you will find that each question has raised many more sub questions to be answered before you find answer to any one of the above mentioned five. If you find answer to the first question “ Do you know your soft and hard skills”, you will come across questions such as what have I done till now , what are my strengths and weaknesses, which areas I have expertise in, which all transferable skills I have and so many other  logical questions. Therefore, it’s a comprehensive exercise in itself before we know which career path is the most suitable path for us. It’s only when we have done this exercise on our personality, skills, interests and liabilities that we can move forward to finding which career option  is most suitable and which one is least. A career councelling can help you in self assessment and in finding the right career in your transition (click here)
Other related Articles
Listen to your heart in choosing your career

Saturday, 5 October 2013

Be The Early Bird In Planning Your Career From Military To Corporate

Career Transition Tips # 2- Start Early

                                                                                                                                                               We understood the importance of accepting the change from military to corporate in our previous        article( click here).  In this second article of this five series articles, we will understand the importance of starting early and what role it plays in the seamless transition to civil world. But before that, An exercise we all must do is to find out the right time to hang your boots. This will not only bring clarity to your thought process and allow you to prepare better for your second career but it will also prevent you from taking knee-jerk decisions during transition. We have adequately discussed the ways to find the right time to hang your boots. ( click here and here ).

 In military whenever we’re assigned with a mission or task, we generally execute the task in a meticulous and organized  manner, applying time, effort and skills in ensuring the success of it. However, we don’t apply the same process when it comes to planning our career post retirement from military; rather planning for career transition is given the least priority in our scheme of things. Why do you have to wait till the last day to see a career possibility outside. Why don’t you start preparing your career transition diligently when you have about two plus years to retire.  Although it looks like a very general point, however, if executed properly, it will pay you rich dividends in terms of progressive career and high salaried job opportunities. Starting early will place you in an unimaginable comfort zone much ahead of your counterparts who started late.  One analogy that has been most commonly heard across the board in military is that there is a lot of time in the transition and one must live in the present. This wrong analogy is the reason why many of us don’t get successful at the first hand in the corporate world and it increases the difficulties of the challenges faced by military leaders during career transition( click here) . Why we didn't apply the same analogy while preparing for staff college or some similar exams for which we start preparing a year plus in advance. Preparing for career transition is no different than preparing for staff college exams. Let’s see the disadvantages of not planning  your career early:-
  •           Unaware about the most suitable career at the time of transition, high probability of  choosing the wrong career path.
  •            Lack of knowledge about the industry and the current practices in corporate.
  •            Lack of corporate munitions such as professional certifications/GMAT score.
  •             Poor networking in corporate.
  •             Unaware of the right practices for job search.
  •        Difficulty in transformation from military to corporate and problems in translating skills  
  •         Extremely stressful career transition.

Having realized  that starting late is an extremely wrong decision and having found out the right time to hang your boots, The question arises in our mind is what is the right time to start your preparation.  The ideal time to start with serious preparation for your second career will vary from individual to individual as those who have been well connected with the corporate world, into reading about the industry practices, and networking with the right connections in corporate will probably require less time than those who have restricted their vision to four walls of military compartment. Ideally one must retouch with the  lost civilian connections irrespective of the years left in transition. Networking is the most important tool now a days for finding the right job and therefore it pays to network with the right set of people.  As a broad guideline, starting two years before your retirement will provide you the right start for your second career.  Again, It is important  that we keep our-self abreast with the issues of career switch, know the latest trends in market, and gain knowledge pertaining to your selected domain as much as possible and not wait for last two years.  

Starting early has overwhelming benefits and it gives adequate time to you to choose the right career path, gain knowledge and certifications about that career, prepare and give GMAT for MBA, network with the right people, and exercise the right job hunting practices. If you have time for your career transition, a career counseling can help you in finding the right career and how to employ your efforts in the right direction, resulting in a successful career transition( click here). To read the second article of this five article series, click here

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Embrace The Change Of Uniform From Military To Corporate

Career Transition Tips # 1- Accept The Change

 Did you notice that many a times you feel extremely uncomfortable thinking about transition to outside world. The felling of uncertainty,  and insecurity over powers your thoughts and many a times in such situations, rather than accepting the reality, you tend to shy away or run away from the thoughts of transition. At times, many of you who have already switched to corporate some time prior also tend to feel uncomfortable in adjusting to corporate environment. In retrospect, Have you ever thought  how well prepared are you to take on the corporate and what improvement/adjustments  you can make to be competitive and fit enough outside.  Here is the first article of the five articles series on  career transition tips which will help you in having a successful and  seamless transition to corporate.  

A career in armed forces is more than a career ;rather it’s a way of  life. You’re thickly into the military routine, day in and day out,  year by year, and  deeply engrossed in the dynamic activities of  the services. While performing your duties with extreme passion and dedication, You  sub consciously tend to develop a strong relationship or a deep association with our profession; the more the number of years of service you have, the thicker the military layer on your skin.
Thus, when it’s time to call it a day and hang your boots permanently, Many of you tend to shy away from the reality or simply avoid thinking about it, thinking that doing so the transition will not bother you and not realizing that the more you neglect it now, the more it will trouble you later. You have fallen so much in love with your military profession that you don’t feel like thinking beyond it. While it’s good to focus on your present, it is necessary to have the foresightedness especially when you are left with couple of years in service. Life has various phases in it and every phase is inevitable. Schooling, college( including NDA), first Career(forces), marriage, retirement, second career etc are all various phases of life and most of you have to undergo all while a handful  of you may skip a few of these phases. The sooner you realize this reality, the better it is for you and your career transition. Once you accept wholeheartedly that you will be retiring from forces at some time in life, you will be able to look and focus towards a career post retirement.
We all know that career transition is a well planned game plan and it needs a lot of sincerity, commitment, and time to plan and execute a seamless transition to corporate world. You know that the challenges faced by military leaders while transitioning to corporate world are  normally not faced by others( click here) . However by not accepting the fact that transition will take place or by avoiding thinking about the transition, we put ourself at a major disadvantageous position from where the recovery is extremely difficult. A person who is repeatedly avoiding the planning and preparation for the career transition is also an example of someone not willing to accept the transition or for that matter change. Why do many of us blame the corporate employers that they don’t provide us with good opportunities, however what we fail to realize is that many of us don’t prepare ourself adequately for the transition before hanging the uniform.

The first step in planning career transition is to realize that change will occur and this acceptance will allow for a focused approach towards the career switch. A good exercise to accept the reality would be to keep a slot for an hour or two daily to think, read, and discuss in relation to career transition and the options available for your next career. Keeping this slot and utilizing time for your second career preparation will not only convince your heart and mind about the occurrence of change but also gives a push to your preparation about career transition.  Remember, the most successful veterans immediately after the transition are those who have planned their transition well and the first step in planning your transition is to shake hand with the call of second career. The sooner you accept the reality, the better it is for your second innings.  
For more info on career transition, click here 

Saturday, 7 September 2013

Career Transition & MBA Timeline

 Timeline for MBA Prep & B-School Admission

An MBA degree amalgamates your military leadership skills with business acumen and transforms them into a powerful tool that guarantees success in business world( To know why MBA, click here ). During an MBA you learn to understand the business language and immerse yourself deeply into peer group learning. In a b-school you have the opportunity to learn all aspects about running a business and also gain much insight to discover which area of business is more suitable to you. Hence, the MBA degree acts as a bridge between military life and corporate world for your smooth transition.

Almost all of you military officers have been tasked to prepare some or other  plan on various occasions during your service career in which you would have placed  a lot of valuable time, and concerted efforts in doing  meticulous planning and sincere execution.  However, most of you don’t apply the same procedures when it comes to planning your career transition. Here is  a general transition timeline which you can modify to suit your personalized requirement.

Military Experience with an MBA degree makes a powerful tool that is highly marketable in the business environment. Though obtaining an MBA degree may delay picking a job by one/two yrs, the long-term proven benefits are worth the time and resources. The business knowledge with military skills is a perfect blend of leadership and decisiveness with corporate knowledge  and business acumen. To sum it up, Find a program that suit your requirement and start early while you are in active service. To know how you can achieve a good score and how to write essays resulting in admission, click here. If you want to take the highly popular GMAT online course, click here

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Employ Real Heroes, Ace Your Business

Why Hiring Military Leaders Is Good For Your Company

Every year thousands of military officers of Indian Air force , Indian Army and Indian Navy hang their uniform and join the corporate street.  These highly skilled , dynamic and vibrant officers join their already retired military counterparts who are lacs in number. They have served the nation by defending it’s integrity , sovereignty and republic and now , after retirement, it’s time for them to serve the nation’s economy with the same passion and patriotism. They have been an asset to any organisation they worked  with and those who have worked with them are well versed with this fact.  The skills that these leaders have can provide the much needed impetus to your business. Here are the 10 compelling reasons why you must hire these military leaders.

1.    Leadership       Entrusted with the opportunity to lead a team  at the young age of  22 in extremely stressful situations, Military officers are nurtured and trained  to lead troops having diverse culture, religion, economic status and regions.  Moreover, Military  officers lead by example wherein they take the initiative and the team follows, thereby inspiring and motivating the team by setting examples.  Leading such diverse people for years in trying circumstances makes an officer an exceptional leader who can be allotted challenging missions with out any supervision.

2.    Team Spirit       Knowing fully the importance of each task or mission, Military officers are not only exceptional leaders but excellent team members  too. They know that any target  can only be achieved if every member of the team gives his 100% willingly. Many a times, they inculcate team spirit among team members for the benefit of the organisation because they know that success depends upon a perfect combination  of individual and team productivity.

3.   Management Skills        Since these leaders are responsible to allocate right men/resources  to right place at right time, They are good managers.  They are trained to be self organised first and that helps them to manage  the resources well even in  crisis. Officers have the unflinching  ability to learn about new technologies, skills and concepts. Thus, they can join your team with transferable skills that are time tested in real world problems, thereby increasing  your company’s profit and growth.

4.     Decision Makers      In operational situations, Military Officers have only a few seconds or minutes to make calculated decisions in the face of enemy , decisions that can impact the  life of hundred of troops and equipment worth millions of rupees not  to mention the nation’s interest. Therefore, through out their military career, they are trained to be mentally robust and efficient decision makers, calculating all the parameters related to the situation and making efficient and rational decisions.

5.   Strong Character with Honesty, Loyalty and Integrity      Military officers are selected through a scientific method wherein their psychology is assessed by scientists(Psychologists)  especially for these three qualities . Thus only those who have high moral values are selected and these qualities are subsequently enhanced during training and grooming. These qualities are must have for all military officers as they deal with the  nation’s  interest. These rare qualities strengthen the moral fiber and add on to the working ethos of the organisation they work with. No wonders  why the top companies worldwide lay so much of emphasis on hiring military people as they have  strong character and good work ethics.

6.   Professionalism        The importance of meeting the assigned  targets and completion of time bounded tasks can’t be understand better than men in fatigues. The allotted task takes the top most priority and rest everything comes subsequently for them. There have been many examples in our history wherein officers have attained martyrdom while accomplishing the task. It shows the amount of sincerity, dedication and devotion military officers have for the task allotted.  Military officers display extreme devotion to work, a practice that not only supplement any organisation’s aim but also motivate other members to contribute.

7.     Problem Solving           Employing skills  besides operational and organisational problems, Military officers have to deal, on a regular basis, with administrative problems that are highly dynamic and complex in nature. Working 24x 7, Military officers deal with problematic situations in a very meticulous and logical  manner, applying high IQ and rational approach.

8.   Discipline and Punctuality          While discipline is a key consideration in the corporate world, it is the backbone in forces.  In Military, Discipline travels another dimension beyond punctuality wherein self-discipline is exercised by military officers not only to present themselves as role model to troops but also to excel in the respective fields without any outside guidance or checks. Display of these two qualities in a corporate work culture act as catalyst, leading  to healthy values and practices in the environment. These officers have a much higher rate of retention as they work with the motto of “Service before self” wherein the organisation is given the priority before self.

9.  Strive for Excellence      Serving in mission critical and time sensitive  environment ,  These leaders  don’t leave a task till the victory is achieved or mission is accomplished.  They work by following procedures ,and regulations and constantly improve/upgrade the system by regular  monitoring and by  taking/giving feedback. They have the un-canning ability to learn new technology and skills  for their self improvement and for the organisation’s benefit.

10.  Versatility      During their illustrious military career, Indian Military officers  serve across multiple  geographies, lead diverse troops, and accomplish task such as  bringing peace in war-hit state/ nations, liaison with civil administration , maintaining logistic and supply chain in hostile conditions, conducting relief operations and many more challenging ones. The enormous experience gained through such challenging tasks brings maturity, versatility and  ability to withstand adverse situations in a confident manner.

If your company has military officers as employees and if the company has done the internal assessment regarding the professionalism and performance of these people, we are sure that you will agree with the points mentioned above. Hiring military officers shows that a company is not only committed to take its business to greater heights and earn greater profit but  also discharges its social responsibility with patriotism and pride.
If you want to hire military leaders of Indian armed forces, write to us at
To know more about the advantages of hiring military leaders, click here

Saturday, 31 August 2013


 Right Time To Hang Your Boots; A Career Perspective -II

In our last article, We saw the various challenges faced by military officers at the time of transition; challenges at the career front and personnel front. Click here to read the article. In this article , we will see which all parameters can help these leaders in finding the right time for career switch from military to civil.

While some short service commission officers serve for minimum period of 10  years  and thereafter  call it  a day, many decide to continue till 20 years or ever further. Similarly, Though many regular officers decide to quit immediately after they reckon 20 years of pensionable service  and enter the corporate  environment,
there are many who continue even in re-employment roles in forces.  If you leave too late, in your 50s, The corporate sector may not offer you senior management positions, which you deserve. On the other hand, if you are a SS officer and you leave after  10 years, you may not get well paid opportunities until you do MBA from a top b-school, an option which is worth the Return –On-Investment( ROI). The question that “whether the decision to leave at 10 years is correct or to leave after re-employment is right” cannot be answered generally and is purely a case to case based decision, which depends entirely upon individual personality, preferences, job satisfaction, education, family and financial responsibilities, and  health issues.

 Having seen that there are many general points which are applicable to most of the officers and which require due diligence before taking the call for alternate career. Transitioning from the organized military life to corporate blues is not a decision that one can  take on a fine morning over a cup of tea. It’s one of the most important decision of one’s career and thus demands a lot of analysis, contemplation, thinking and rethinking,  planning and preparation on an individual’s part. Neither it is based on one single factor or another; rather the right time of career switch will be an ideal combination of a number of circumstances that affect your life at larger level. Let’s have a look at the factors which we need to consider while taking the decision.

Career Options
Since we are taking a call about moving from one career to another , it’s important to consider  at which juncture you are standing in your present career, what are your chances of career progression,  if a wait of a year or two in your present career will clear the hazy picture about progression in your present career,  or you find yourself at the crossroads where it’s mandatory to decide whether to stay or move.  If you have been superseded ,you know that future promotions aren’t going to be on your way anymore, and you are not drawing the job satisfaction that you used to draw earlier, It would be wiser and logical  to take the call to hang your uniform  provided there are no major issues such as those mentioned down below. An individual is the best judge of one’s capabilities and, after due deliberation, if one feels that he or she will be a misfit in business world, the better option would be to keep donning the uniform with pride. At the career level, The decision to stay or move out will be based on individual preferences, his or her career progression/growth in the present career or the lack of it, job satisfaction , and individual’s personality.

Family and Financial Responsibilities
Family issues play a major role in our decision making and when the members of the family are themselves at the crucial junctures, the decision to change career becomes even more difficult. If your spouse is at the initial settling down of  her career, or if your kids need to stay at their present location and relocation may have a major impact on their future or if your financial liabilities don’t allow you for a career change for a year or two, then you must take those circumstances in to account while analyzing the decision. If you feel that after two years you are likely to have some major commitments  on personnel  front  and you feel like taking the plunge now, go ahead and take the call. After all it’s one life and you must chase your dream if you have one in corporate or in entrepreneurship. However, if you’re fine and comfortable at both family and financial front, you've completed 20 years of pensionable service and you are willing to take on a challenging task in corporate, you must consider transition immediately rather than a few years later. Why? As I mentioned earlier, age is a major issue for veterans retiring in their 40s and 50s. If you want to reach high in corporate and on the financial aspects , the advantage of pension makes you comfortable, having no other major issues , it’s wiser to take the call early as this way you would be easily absorbed in corporate. Also, It’s pertinent to mention that  the chances of growth increases many folds with a regular MBA degree or an executive MBA from top b-school.

Career Options Outside and Your level of Preparation
There are times when one  knows that after a couple of years  he or she will not have  any choice but to find alternate career. Similarly, those who have decided to leave forces and they still have a few years to go, it is very important to understand the  challenges involved in transition from military to corporate and to see how best they can prepare for a seamless transition into civil.  Thus the right time will also depend upon the level of preparation that one has at the time of leaving forces. If you have brainstormed your next career path well and have kitted yourself with the munitions required to excel in your choice of field, There would be no stopping for you. Suppose  you have decided to do an MBA and you have option to be on extension for some more time, it would make sense to take the extension, clear GMAT, and write essays while still in active service.  Of course, one would be required to make certain arrangements but if planned properly and well executed, these arrangements will turn out to be career boosters for your good.

While there would be a number of issues for consideration such as health issues, or  disabilities, or many other, The above mentioned issues will most probably figure in most of ours life and thus takes priority over others. Even at the sake of repetition, It’s worth mentioning that evaluating the pros and cons, and exploring the options fully or even seeking career counseling will help a long way in arriving at a logical conclusion about the ideal time for transition.

Finding the right time to change career will not only remove the unwanted stress but it will also help you in planning your career post retirement in a much planned and organized manner. Soon we will present a time plan for transition which can help you in planning your transition in a much better way. How did you find the article? Do leave your comments down below to let us know  your views on the same.

Friday, 23 August 2013

A Month Of Launch Of M2C: The Journey So Far

It’s been a month since we have launched Military To Corporate-M2C and we convey our heartfelt thanks to all the military leaders, serving or retired, their families, and the gentry in civil  who have overwhelmingly supported us in the first month of this unique concept, which is conceived to mitigate the career related problems faced by Indian military leaders during career transition. Since certain serious and  glaring issue are highlighted in this article, We would request you all to read this blog till the very end, forward this to every military leader, and also leave your comments/suggestions  down below in the comments box.

You all would agree with us  that till now there was no such platform existed in our country which could show the right path to retiring military leaders and also sensitize the corporate environment about the business value of military skills. On the one hand,  Most of the retiring officers are  generally  unaware on which career to choose, how to translate military skills into business terms,  how to do job hunt, which industry to choose, how to network and so many other issue and  On the other hand, Indian corporate sector is unaware of the business advantages of hiring military veterans. Most of the HR recruiters think that our best talent lies in security field and thus we are traditionally suited for security related jobs only.

Before we discuss with you about the challenges envisaged by M2C, we want to inform you that the results that we look forward to happening in the future in our country would be similar to click here and click here.  Of-course the  social system in  U.S is different from that of ours and in our country military is remembered only when the security of the countrymen is threatened, however  that doesn't stop us from fighting for our cause, the cause of veterans’ career .

Knowing the camaraderie, espirit-de-corps, and brotherhood that we have for each other, We assume that all of us, retiring or retired, would be interested in taking this cause forward even if one is not affected personally .  Having seen the end result of this cause above, Let’s have a look at the three big challenges:-

Challenge I - Creating Awareness Among Recruiters
Though Corporate India regards, and respects the sacrifice of our military leaders, It doesn't provide adequate opportunities in terms of job. There is a gap or a lack of awareness about the skills of military leaders and  the corporate relevance of these skills. Recently we conducted a few interviews of the shortlisted candidates with a few corporate clients and the lack of awareness among the HR recruiters was self-evident during the process. Hence, A big challenge is  to sensitize the Indian Corporate Sector about the strong business advantages of hiring veterans. While M2C is doing it’s best to create awareness, however the best results will only come if each one of you join us in doing so.

Challenge II - Empowering Retiring/Retired Military Veterans
Military leaders have all the qualities to be successful in the corporate arena, however they face numerous difficulties during their career transition including how to translate skills, career dilemma as to which career to choose , and  which industry to choose( click here) . M2C has taken on this challenge to provide the right transition advice, and resources to help them in finding the best possible career path. Through our transition related articles on blog, and website, We are already empowering the military community about the transition. Soon M2C will be posting valuable tips on resume writing, Interview, career transition,  certification courses, MBA and GMAT prep, and job hunting, all free of cost, with the aim to further empower the military leaders and pitch them high in corporate environment. M2C expects the military community to generously share these links with each other especially with those who are about to retire. 

Challenge III – Generating Career Opportunities For Veterans
If we are able to create awareness among the recruiters and if our veterans are empowered with business knowledge( MBA and certification courses) and adequately kitted with arsenals required to succeed in the corporate environment, It would be much easier for M2C to find job opportunities for our veterans. Here we  seek support of all our veterans who are well established in corporate and are in senior management roles to come ahead and introduce M2C to the recruiters and management in your company. While M2C has  made it’s  presence felt among the military community; It can  reach deep into corporate only with a helping hand from your side. You may adopt any method such as giving us contact details of recruiters so that we can send presentations to them or forwarding our details or presentations such as this one  to them. This way we all together would be able to help other members of this big fraternity in their career needs.

The Road Ahead
 “The Team M2C” with the support of our strong community  is committed to the cause of our veterans and we will make sure that every veteran gets a respectable job opportunity in the times to come.  Therefore, I request all of you reading this to take out some precious time of yours and do the following actions for the benefit of all :-

Forward this article and under mentioned links to retired/retiring/serving military officers and their families in your contacts on all online/offline platforms.

Follow us on the M2C’s platforms, which are  mentioned below, and take active part including suggestions/feedback  ( They are really valuable).

Spread awareness about the “  Advantages of Hiring Veterans” and other related awareness issues posted by us  with your HR/Senior Managements. Let M2C  know the contacts of HR recruiters in your company  or you yourself forward our presentations/articles to them.

Strive to prove yourself in whichever role/position you’re in corporate world, cementing reasons for business community to hire military veterans and making solid grounds that why the next hire in your company should be a military veteran.

Whether you were/are  in Air force, Army, or Navy, Our shared values ( incl brotherhood and camaraderie)  of our military profession serve as a precursor for instantaneous acquaintance and mutual trust, leading to unconditional help for each other.  “The Team M2C” feels that the present state of our camaraderie in corporate will set course of action for future veterans. Let’s all join hands together for our very own cause and let’s prove that we are  together whether in fatigues or in corporate blues. As mentioned above, Here are the links, do share with others especially with those having defense background  for the cause of veterans.

Visit our Website

 We thank all of you for your overwhelming support in last one month and also for reading this long article. We look forward to continuous support in the days to come as together we can help our veterans in finding a respectable career post retirement.


    Right Time to Hang your boots :A Career Perspective-I

Military officers lead a well planned and organised life during their active service in defence forces. From planning a routine sortie in Air force and   discharging duty officer’s  responsibility  while the ship is on board in Navy to leading a patrol in Army, Military officers carry out meticulous planning keeping the minutest of details in mind. However, They find themselves at crossroads when it comes to decide the ideal time for them to hang their boots. If one decides to leave too early , he or She won’t be able to gain the exposure and military skills  that are relevant in the corporate world and if one retires too late, it would be difficult to invite a good career opportunity at senior management level . Exceptions can always be there, however, being exceptions, they are only a few percentage of the whole bunch ,so here we will focus on the general part of the whole issue.

Before we dig deep about the right time to retire with career perspective in mind, let us first see what all are the challenges involved in finding a job at the time of retirement:-

(a)     Finding a suitable job that matches the skills and other requirements, such as finances, education of children, and place of residence, generally remains the biggest challenge while entering in the corporate world .

(b)    Lack of awareness about which all soft skills they have, how to transfer military skills to corporate terminology,which is the right career path, whether to do an MBA or some other professional certification, how to prepare job grabbing resumes,  how to search for job opportunities and many other similar career related issues.

(c )    Fear of unknown in terms of corporate culture and whether they will be able to fit from formal military culture to less formal corporate culture.

(d)     Inability to let go the ‘rank’ syndrome; Some are unable to dust off the rigid approach.

(e)      Some more face health challenges and physical disability and thus need time to attend to their health and hence transition becomes more challenging  for them.

(f)      Lack of quality assistance from the Indian Govt and no benefits for  veterans in terms of  funding for MBA and related studies  and tax exemptions to employers if they  recruit veterans especially disabled ones. The six  months management  course being run for long is a decent platform but yet to mark their presence among the  HR recruiters. Also, Lack if interest on part of govt to include the career needs of veterans as part of CSR ( Corporate Social Responsibility).

(g)    Lack of awareness on part of HR recruiters about the military skills and their corresponding translation(relevance) in the corporate world.

(j)    Current economic situation.

(k)   Competition for job with civilian work force who have been in the corporate street longer than them.

(m)    Lack of technical education( hard skills or work content skills).

(o)    Limited funds to pursue a new venture of own.

Some other challenges are listed here, click here . While these are the various challenges faced by the military officers in their job search, there are many other personnel challenges that add to the complexity at the time of transition.Some of them are:-

(a)    Inability to visualize beyond military life; lack of vision for civil life.

(b)    Not feeling ready for transition especially among  those serving/served in combat arms as compared to those who serving/served in technical arms; a pattern attributable to lack of technical expertise of a specific field and hence lack of self-confidence.

(c)     Challenges in relating to family life and civil people or in  re-accustom  to civilian culture and social life.

(e)      Lack of administration support.

(f)       Relocation and other family related issues/Misc issues.

Having seen the numerous challenges faced by the veterans , we will see in our next article( Click here to read) as to how can the agony be reduced by choosing the right time to hang our boots. 
To know more about career transition, click here