Veterans have a sense of urgency as business leaders… Getting results requires “hyper vigilance.”

by | Nov 16, 2012

Iraq veterans Alan Nudo (left) and Marco Concepcion are training as carpenters. Photo: Liz Hafalia, The Chronicle / SF

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Veterans are good for business


Michael Bleckerea

Updated 4:07 p.m., Friday, November 9, 2012

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“Employers are hesitant to hire veterans for reasons both real and perceived. Yes, many of today’s veterans have done multiple combat tours and carry trauma with them beyond the battlefield. But veterans are by no means the only population dealing with mental health issues such as post-traumatic stress disorder. The truth?
— 26 percent of veterans have been diagnosed with PTSD or other mental health conditions, according to the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences.
— 26 percent of Americans have a diagnosable mental health condition, including anxiety, mood disorder, impulse control or substance abuse disorder, according to the National Comorbidity Survey.”

Employers who hesitate to hire veterans who served in combat should take note!   I spent many years as a business leader in the information technology sector.  My own success is attributed in a major way for having “hyper vigilance” and a sense of urgency about getting results.  The laser like focus was a gift, but also a result of the symptoms of PTSD.  I channeled the energy that comes from being “on edge” all the time to motivating employees and building strong relationships with customers.

Don’t hesitate and don’t wait to hire a veteran…  The percentages are not in the employers favor since around 26% of veterans have been diagnosed with the gift of “hyper vigilance.”  Be alert and proactive in searching for the best candidates to fill positions that require a sense of urgency.
Steve Sparks
Reconciliation: A Son’s Story

About the author

Steve Sparks is a retired information technology sales and marketing executive with over 35 years of industry experience, including a Bachelors’ in Management from St. Mary’s College. His creative outlet is as a non-fiction author, writing about his roots as a post-WWII US Navy military child growing up in the 1950s-1960s.
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