We are here to help!
Whether you served 3 years or 23 years, as you prepare to transition out of the military, a mentor to provide advice and guidance will be helpful.
This podcast series was created to give you a platform to learn from mentors. By interviewing those veterans who have already traveled the transition path before you, we give you insight and information on what worked and didn't work for them, help you prepare for potential obstacles and plan for your own transition success.
Our goal is to give you actionable ideas every single week that you can use to guide your transition out of the military, no matter which direction you choose to travel.
Sharing Hard Truths with Keith Cassant
Season 3 Episode 112:
Keith Cassant planned to go into law enforcement when he retired from the US Army. When that plan fell through due to disability issues, he had to make some quick changes. He is currently on his 3rd role in 4 years. He is here to share some great lessons he learned the hard way and give some truths, that while they may be hard to hear, he thinks are important.
The Quality over Quantity Debate with Josh Mason
Season 3 Episode 111:
Josh Mason had an unexpected transition from the US Air Force with only 6 months' notice. He quickly ramped up his transition process and jumped into LinkedIn with both feet. Listen to Josh's stories of how all 4 roles he has landed came from LinkedIn connections. Josh and Lori have a debate over which is more important for your LinkedIn connections, quality or quantity.
Bouncing Back from Being Laid Off with Jonathan Fisher
Season 3 Episode 110:
After retiring from the US Army, Jonathan went right from SkillBridge to hired. Unfortunately, his start-up employer had to close its operations and Jonathan found himself back in the job search. Tune it to hear how this aviation maintainer made the jump to IT and cybersecurity and hear how he landed a new job within 6 days.
Figuring Out Who You Are with Robert "Bob" Newlin
Season 3 Episode 109:
You may remember Bob Newlin from his military transition Q&A session in Season 1 as he was preparing to retire from the Air Force while stationed overseas. Bob returns to the show to talk to us about not only his transition into working for a biopharmaceutical company, but also his journey of defining his post-military self.
Finding Your Purpose with Jordan Megonigal
Season 3 Episode 108:
Though many will write off finding your purpose as "woo woo" nonsense, Jordana Megonigal, the founder and CEO of RECON Network, brings scientific proof of the importance of living your purpose. Tune in to hear more about the power of purpose, how to find it - even if it isn't in your everyday work - and the resources you can use to find it.
The Balance of Optimism and Reality with Dr. Vaughn Eason
Season 3 Episode 107:
On the surface, when he retired from the US Navy, Vaughn had a seamless, smooth transition. Though he calls himself an "avid optimist," he shares with us on this episode the struggles and challenges he faced - and continues to face - in his post-military career.
How to Effectively Use LinkedIn as a Tool with Adam Braatz - Part 2
Season 3 Episode 106:
USAF veteran Adam Braatz, author of LinkedIn Mastery for Veterans and Transitioning Service Members is back to discuss exactly how to use your LinkedIn once you get your profile set up. We talk about who to connect with, how to create content and how to leverage LinkedIn as an effective job search tool including a strategy that you can use to leverage your LinkedIn profile in just 15-30 minutes a day.
Top to Bottom LinkedIn Creation with Adam Braatz - Part 1
Season 3 Episode 105:
Adam Braatz, the author of LinkedIn Mastery for Veterans and Transitioning Service Members, takes us through some best practices and tips for creating an effective LinkedIn profile from the top to the bottom. You will want to listen to this one sitting at your computer with your LinkedIn profile open, and you may need to listen to this episode more than once to capture all the value!
Military Transition Q&A with Cody Bowman
Season 3 Episode 104:
Tune in for another Military Transition Q&A where Cody, a full-time member of the South Dakota Air National Guard asks Lori questions about transferable skills, how to choose which certifications to pursue, how to expand your LinkedIn network and how to write your LinkedIn summary and work experience content. Cody's first transition out of active duty Air Force did not go well, he was in his own words "underprepared." Tune in to learn how you can better prepare yourself.
The Power of Humility in the Military Transition
Season 3 Episode 103:
Though he grew up in poverty and was surrounded by violence as a teen, Dr. Bernard Toney's US Army career included 3 years as the White House Medical Officer, providing care to the Vice President and their family. He talks about the keys to his career success, both in the military and since retiring and attributes much of it to having the humility to accept help.
Key Strategies for Bouncing Back from Setbacks
Season 2 Episode 43:
Sometimes life hands you the unexpected. For the last episode of Season 2, I had a plan but then had to pivot. My life was hacked last week, and my planned guest also had life hand him the unexpected, so I decided to record a solo episode. My week inspired me to touch on a subject that is universal – the dreaded bad day or in my case, days. Even the hardest days contain lessons. Here are some strategies that can help!
From Zero to Hired Using LinkedIn with Deon Myers
Season 2 Episode 42:
When Deon Myers planned his retirement from the US Army, he followed advice and started planning and researching early. However, when it came to LinkedIn, he was starting from scratch. Deon has become an expert LinkedIn networker. Tune in to hear Deon talk about how he has used LinkedIn and its network to land two great post-military jobs.
Celebrating 100 Episodes and the 2nd Anniversary of the Show
On this week’s podcast, we celebrate our 100th episode by recapping some of the most common and important military transition lessons that our guest speakers have shared over the past 99 episodes. We welcome 7 previous guests on this episode to speak on a key issue they either talked about in their episode or have since focused on as their career has progressed. Thank you for supporting the show and listening to the stories and guidance that we have shared!
Networking Your Way to a Brand New Career with Brian Arrington
Season 2 Episode 40:
When Brian Arrington retired from the US Air Force from the security forces career field, he knew he wanted a change. He jumped into LinkedIn and networking with both feet and through his network, he landed a role with Wells Fargo as a business consultant. In 2019, Brian launched Vets2Industry, a non-profit dedicated to serving service members and their families. Today, he is the Director of Military Programs and Recruiting for Military Hiring Accelerator. Tune in to hear how and why Vets2Indsutry was founded, while also learning how Brian can help you get hired.
Learning Transition is More Than Landing a Job with Dr. Destinee Prete
Season 2 Episode 39:
After serving 4 years in the US Army as an officer in the medical service corps, Dr. Destinee Prete transitioned to earn a doctorate in industrial and organizational (I/O) psychology. She has held various positions that have helped transitioning service members and veterans. She has conducted research into the transition process, specifically regarding post-9/11 women veterans. She shares some of her insights into the military transition for every veteran on the episode and talks about why it is a mistake to put too much emphasis on just landing a job.
Landing a Federal Job with Jason Heering
Season 2 Episode 38:
Jason Heering retired from the US Coast Guard from an overseas location which added a layer of difficulty to his transition. Once he discovered that he could network virtually, using organizations such as Vets2Industry, he started networking and connecting with mentors. He landed a role with the federal government and takes us through how he created his resume and negotiated his salary and benefits through this process. In addition, Jason talks about finding your "why," processing your disability and much more in the episode. Tune in for some of Jason's favorite books that he has read during the last year he has been out the military.
The Importance of Career Research with Saquonna Duncan
Season 2 Episode 37:
Saquonna Duncan served 9 years Active Duty and 12 years in the US Navy Reserve. By her own admission, she made several mistakes, the first of which was pursuing education in a career field without doing research. She shares many of the lessons she learned through her transition such as failing to negotiate salary, neglecting to plan financially and relying too heavily on education versus experience in her job search. Now, she has started her own organization to support military veterans with career counseling and educate organizations in attracting and retaining military veteran candidates.
Embracing the Transformation in the Transition with James Felts
Season 2 Episode 36:
James Felts left the US Army as an infantry officer after just 4 years and took the path of least resistance into law enforcement. When that was not the right fit, he went back to the National Guard and the Reserves and worked a series of jobs below his capabilities until he got himself on the right track. James believes it is not the transition, but the transformation that causes the biggest challenges in your career after the military. After 4 different military transitions, James is here to share his struggles and the keys to his success.
Determining Your Value and Strategically Networking with Adam Getz
Season 2 Episode 35:
Adam Getz successfully transitioned into a project management role after retiring from the US Army. Though he was told he was "overpreparing" because he started 2 years out, Adam was very proactive during his transition preparation. He used informational interviewing to not only gain mentorship, but also to learn about his salary value and translate his military skills. He shares his strategy for conducting these informational interviews and also discusses how and why he decided to invest in some paid services.
Test Driving Your New Career as a Volunteer with David Nava
Season 2 Episode 34:
After retiring from the US Navy as a flight officer, David Nava discovered Salesforce. As a veteran, he gained 14 certifications at no cost through Salesforce's military programs. He volunteered to gain experience and discover the best use of his skills and the best fit for his goals and his personality. In addition to talking about the Salesforce career path and community, Dave shares the importance of translating your transferable skills and his take on how to find career satisfaction after the military.
Career Fair and Networking Event Success Strategies with Lori Norris
Season 2 Episode 33:
This week, I will be leading you through a solo episode of career fair and networking event success strategies. Preparation before the event will give you confidence during the event and increase your chances of success after the event. Whether the event is in person or online, my tips and tricks will set you up for success. Tune in until the end of the episode when I walk you step-by-step through creating an outline for an effective conversation with a recruiter at one of these events.
Blazing a Non-traditional Transition Trail with Amber Kulesza
Season 2 Episode 32:
Amber Kulesza served 12 years in the US Air Force and Air Force Reserves. Her transition was unexpected, and she wasn’t given much time to plan. Despite these challenges, she has navigated through the transition process with the help of a robust network and leveraging certifications to upskill. After working in human resources, she took a year to travel, decompress, explore career possibilities and position herself for her next chapter. Her path has not been linear, but she has owned her journey and has some great insight and advice for others.
Don't Do Military Transition Alone with Jeremy "Monte" Montgomery
Season 2 Episode 31:
After serving 10 years active duty for the Air Force, Jeremy Montgomery, who goes by Monte, served an additional 12 years in the Air National Guard. When he retired in 2020, he used LinkedIn to grow his network and ultimately land a role with Fusion Cell as their business development manager. Although hired right away, Jeremy reflects on his transition and shares his mistakes and offers advice to ensure a smoother transition for others.
Using Your Same Military Skills in a New Industry with Sarah Ostrowski
Season 2 Episode 30:
As a US Army intelligence officer, Sarah Ostrowski thought her only options to use her intel skills was law enforcement or defense. By using her research skills, she put LinkedIn to work and found out that her skills were very valuable - even to large corporations such as the Walt Disney Company. She made lots of mistakes along the way, but listen in to hear exactly what she did right to launch her career in a new industry, protecting the magic of Disney!
Two Sides of the Military Transition Story with Nathan and Kelsey Wolf-Wallace
Season 2 Episode 29:
Husband and wife team Nathan and Kelsey share this episode to talk about their experience with the military transition. Before they were married, Nathan served in the US Army and really struggled in his transition. After completing her counseling degree, Kelsey took a role with Hire Heroes USA, where today she manages the Junior Enlisted Program. Listen in as we talk about subjects ranging from the negativity you may face when separating from how to use free resumes.
Exploring Sales as a Career with Mark Rothschild
Season 2 Episode 28:
After serving 10 years as a pilot in the US Navy, Mark Rothschild was ready for something new. Knowing his strong work ethic, his need to connect with people and desire for a career where pay was connected to effort, he decided on a career in tech sales. After completing a training program to gain a base foundation on the tech world and a framework for how to be successful in sales work, he began his sales career. Mark shares his transition story, programs he used to build his skills and insights into why veterans make successful salespeople. Even if you're not considering a sales career, you will gain value from hearing Mark's story and advice!
Clearing Up Resume Myths with Lori Norris
Season 2 Episode 27:
After teaching resume writing to transitioning military service members since 2005, writing thousands of resumes while owning her own resume business since 2004 and hosting this podcast since 2020, Lori Norris is here to clear up some resume myths and misconceptions for you in this solo episode. Have you ever wondered why employers hire, what they want to know from reading your resume, how to beat the "evil robot" of the ATS or if you need a "master resume?" If so, these questions and more will be cleared up.
Learning from Military Transition Data with Brian Niswander
Season 2 Episode 26:
Data has always been part of Brian Niswander's career, both while serving in the USAF on active duty or reserve as an intel officer or during his private sector career in consumer goods. He created Military-Transition.org to gather and analyze data from veterans regarding their transition and he shares highlights of his findings on this episode. Be sure to check out the 3 guidebooks the organization has published that you can download for free on their website!
Common Military Transition Lessons Learned with Lucas Connolly
Season 2 Episode 25:
Lucas Connolly retired after a 20-year career in the US Army as a Field Artillery Officer. After working for a Fortune 500 company, whose large paycheck came with a huge time commitment, he reevaluated his priorities and began his career supporting transitioning service members. Lucas and Lori cover some of the common transition lessons we have discussed on the show such as start early, only write focused resumes, build your network before you need it, get on LinkedIn now and transition is much more than just finding a job.
Backwards Planning Your Military Transition with Jason Shockey
Season 2 Episode 24:
After serving 20 years in the United States Marine Corps conducting cybersecurity operations, Jason Shockey successfully transitioned into a Chief Information Security Officer role with a bank. While his transition appears "easy," he put a lot of hard work, careful planning and deliberate action in to ensure his own success. His methodical approach to his own transition and his desire to help others led him to create My Cyber Path, a resource designed to guide cybersecurity career navigation. He shares some valuable insight and a very generous offer in this episode.
Making Sure Your Message is Understood with Julie Sanders
Season 2 Episode 23:
After serving in the US Army as a linguist with a high-level security clearance, Julie thought the job search would be a breeze. After discovering the only place she could find a job was retail, she was determined to gain her education and improve her marketability. She now advocates for other service members through Veterans Upward Bound and promotes networking as part of Bold Vets. Together we cover translating military skills, the value of education, networking and much more.
Military Transition Q&A with Tyler Burkholder
Season 2 Episode 22:
Tyler's service in the US Navy was not always a positive experience and he was determined to have a successful transition. He is here to ask some insightful questions about the transition such as how can veterans do a better job of supporting each other, how can we get information to active duty service members who are not on social media, what are some tools you can use to find your post-military career focus and how can you relearn your self-worth after being torn down by your leadership or those around you?
Transforming from Victim to Victor with Robert Washington
Season 2 Episode 21:
After serving in the US Navy for 9 years, Robert left the military to compete as a professional mixed martial arts fighter. After fighting professionally for several years, he went through multiple career transitions and is now working in tech for Microsoft. Robert had a very tough upbringing, but he learned to reframe his mindset and leverage his struggles into strengths to achieve career success. Robert is also a professional motivational speaker and you will find yourself inspired to take action after listening to his episode.
Taking an Active Approach to Your Transition with Joshua Atkinson
Season 2 Episode 20:
Joshua Atkinson's transition out of the Marine Corps after 11 years of service was unplanned, rushed and rocky. He has dedicated much of his career to helping other service members be better prepared than he was. Listen in to this episode to hear Josh's very strategic and tactical viewpoint on how to approach and prepare for a successful military transition. Josh is the co-founder of a certification training company, but he also has some interesting information on the value - and dangers - of pursuing certifications for your next career.
Fighting Imposter Syndrome with Hayden Barnes
Season 2 Episode 19:
When Hayden Barnes made the decision to separate from the US Army, his senior leaders told him there was no way he would be successful in the civilian workforce. Not only has Hayden achieved success, he has thrived in his new role. He is an advocate for junior enlisted servicemembers and a proven mentor who helps veterans navigate their way into a career in information technology. He joins Lori to discuss imposter syndrome, how he leveraged his infantry experience into tech and how he overcame the negativity to achieve success. This episode marks the launch of the Lessons Learned for Vets YouTube Channel which will feature weekly bonus questions from our guests. You can subscribe and watch our videos at https://tinyurl.com/llforvets22.
Dealing with the Emotional Challenges of the Military Transition with Olivia Nunn
Season 2 Episode 18:
When Olivia Nunn decided to retire from the US Army, as the host of the Army's Soldier for Life Podcast, she had access to all the resources and information she needed to land a great job. She did all the right things for her job search and landed a role very quickly. However, the emotional toll of the military transition caught her by surprise. All the changes that she was facing, both in her career and her personal life, took a toll on Olivia and she found herself struggling - almost to the point of no return. She has since become a mental health advocate and shares a portion of her struggle and the keys to her successful journey to improved mental health and happiness in this episode.
Getting Inside the Mind of the Recruiter with John Axtell
Season 2 Episode 17:
John Axtell retired from the United States Marine Corps in 2014. He was an infantryman and military police officer and though he wrapped up his career as a military recruiter he thought he was not qualified to do anything but law enforcement and security. After attending TAP with Lori Norris, he discovered that he had transferable skills and was able to land a role in talent acquisition for an airline. He now works for Wells Fargo on the Military Talent Programs Team. John has been recruiting, screening and hiring candidates in the corporate world for 8 years now and he shares some of the similarities and differences as well as some candid "insider" information from the recruiter's perspective on job search best practices.
Military Transition Q&A with Andro Infante
Season 2 Episode 16:
Andro Infante is wrapping up a 20-year US Army career and is seeking roles in talent acquisition. He asks some great questions about resumes and making it through the scan, how to assess culture and determine whether you fit better in a small or large company and the cause of high rates of veteran turnover. We also discuss strategies to effectively announce your "open to work" status on LinkedIn.
Leaning on Mentors with Richard Comitz
Season 2 Episode 15:
Rich Comitz retired as a Lieutenant Colonel from the US Army in 2019 and wrapped up his career as a Professor at the US Military Academy at West Point. After working in higher education for just over 2 years, Rich took on the role of Senior Vice President of American Corporate Partners, or ACP, at the end of 2021. Rich is here to share the struggles he went through, even as a senior officer with a PhD. Rich also talks about the power of a mentor and how ACP is matching veterans to high-quality, targeted mentors.
Flipping the Script on Transition and Finance with Scott Tucker and Jen Amos
Season 2 Episode 14:
This episode features husband and wife duo Scott Tucker and Jen Amos. Scott served 10 years in the US Army as an officer. Scott founded US VetWealth in January of 2012, offering financial services for career military families. Jen, who is a Gold Star daughter, joined the business in 2016 as the Director of Community Relations. She is also the host of the award-winning podcast, Holding Down the Fort. They discuss how they are looking at financial planning and benefits plans differently. Scott also shares his non-traditional approach to the military transition process.
Stepping Out of Your Comfort Zone with Michael Klemmer
Season 2 Episode 13:
As an officer retiring from the US Army in the midst of COVID, Michael Klemmer found the transition resources to be lacking. He took matters into his own hands and pursued other resources. He landed a SkillBridge program and then a job. However, today he is here to also talk about his new business venture, Aerial Resupply Coffee. Even if you don't want to start a business, you will enjoy Mike's words of wisdom about taking the risk of doing new things - even if it's uncomfortable.
Military Transition Q&A with Eric Crist
Season 2 Episode 12:
In the first military transition Q&A episode of Season 2, I sit down with US Army Command Career Counselor Eric Crist to discuss all things transition. He asks about common experience gaps for veterans, the timing of when to write your resume, how to leverage digital platforms in the transition and the most common transition struggles. It's a great conversation full of valuable information!
Learning You Don't Have to Be Perfect with Tom Zacher
Season 2 Episode 11:
Tom Zacher retired from the US Navy in 2019. What makes Tom so relatable is that he made many mistakes in his transition, but he has still found success in his post-military career. He teaches us that if you are determined, you are consistent, you are resourceful and you are willing to take action, the transition doesn't have to be complicated. Tune in to hear all of Tom's lessons and get an update on Charlan Rieve and her son Rowan's illness.
The Power of a Positive Mindset with Samira Searcy
Season 2 Episode 10:
Samira Searcy retired from the Army, landed a SkillBridge role and started a permanent position all before her retirement was official. Unfortunately, she also was let go of that same position within just a few months. Samira is the host of the On the Bounce Podcast, which is all about resilience. When she lost that first job, she practiced what she preaches - she picked herself up and got back in the game. The very next day, she met her current boss at a networking event, who was so impressed he created a position just for her. Not only will you learn a few things, you will walk away feeling recharged and energized.
Pulling Back the Curtain on the Hiring Process with Michael McCoy
Season 2 Episode 9:
Michael McCoy is still active duty in the Tennessee Army National Guard. He has been working in talent acquisition for more than 2 years and he is here to share insider details on job search best practices such as resume writing, how he uses the dreaded ATS, interviewing, networking and labor market research. This is a good one you might have to listen to twice and take notes!
Being Honest About Military Transition Struggles with Mark Brock
Season 2 Episode 8: Mark Brock achieved the rank of Command Sergeant Major before he retired from the US Army in 2019. Mark had a smooth transition from SkillBridge into a great job with the same company in a different department. Little did he know that the transition struggles reached far beyond just getting a job. Because he had seen so much bad advice out there, he vowed that he would wait 2 years before offering transition advice. He gets candid and shares his list of 10 lessons he learned in his transition on this show.
Taking Advantage of Veteran Benefits and Resources with Tyrone Hewitt - Part 2
Season 2 Episode 7:
Tyrone Hewitt is back in this second episode where he talks about how to choose which Veteran Service Organizations and veteran benefits to use. He talks about disability, education and employment benefits and shares some of the key resources available to you in the military transition.
Tapping into the Knowledge of the TransitioNerd with Tyrone Hewitt
Season 2 Episode 6:
After much of his US Navy career was spent in aviation maintenance, when Tyrone Hewitt retired, he knew he want to make a change. He started the planning and preparation process early and found that his initial intent to become a teacher was not the right path. Now he teaches other veterans as a transition program facilitator. He is a self-proclaimed TransitioNerd due to his dedication to researching policies, gaining in-depth information and an unwillingness to provide inaccurate information. This is Part 1 of a 2-part series with Tyrone.
Finding Out You Don't Have to FITFO with Kasie Valenti
Season 2 Episode 5: Kasie Valenti intended to make the US Army a career and retire after 20+ years. When her life and her priorities changed, she made the decision to separate after 8 years. Kasie found herself feeling shameful, guilty and very unprepared. She thought she had to FITFO - which stands for "figure it the [email protected]*K out." She is here to talk about why and how active duty service members should start preparing for life after the military, sooner than you think.
Navigating VA Home Loan Benefits with Michael Hunter
Season 2 Episode 4:
Michael Hunter served 26 years in the US Army and just retired at the end of 2021. He now works as a Military Liaison for Aligned Education Foundation, a 501(c)3 that educates and supports active duty military, veterans, families and real estate agents in the VA home loan benefit. In this episode, Mike talks about what made him completely change his career focus, He offers financial tips to prepare for your military transition as well as some guidelines for buying a home with the VA home loan benefits.
Making the Transition Look Easy with Rich Pelletier
Season 2 Episode 3: After retiring from the United States Air Force after 27 years and reaching the highest enlisted rank of Chief Master Sergeant, Rich started working as an Operations Manager at Amazon before he was officially retired. From the outside looking in, Rich's transition looked like he hit the easy button. However, Rich put in focused, strategic effort that paid dividends with 4 solid job offers. In this episode, Rich and I recreate a class we taught together at Luke AFB and we each share our top 3 transition lessons.
Bridging Knowledge Gaps Using Certifications with Misty Moreno and Jeremy Burdick
Season 2 Episode 2:
We welcome back Misty Moreno from Season 1, who is joined by Jeremy Burdick from Vets2PM to discuss their new aPHR certification. Misty takes the time to discuss all the similarities and differences between HR in the military and the private sector. Even if you are not interested in an HR career field, you will get lots of value listening to their take on whether certifications are really necessary for post-military employment. Misty will give you a fresh perspective on assessing what level you target in your first role out of the military.
Finding New Ways to Stay Connected with Benjie Manibog
Season 2 Episode 1:
After serving 15 years in the United States Marine Corps, Benjie Manibog's military career came to an abrupt halt due to his wife's illness. Though he struggled initially, once he decided to follow his purpose, he launched Thrash N' Raid, a skateboard and apparel company and serves on the leadership team for Six Feet Above, a non-profit that uses skateboarding to help veterans stay connected. Benjie may not look like the traditional Marine Raider with his blue hair, but he has great insight into leveraging your military lessons into your post-military career.
Celebrating One Year of the Lessons Learned for Vets Podcast - Part 2
Surprise! I know I said that last week was our final episode of the season, but we had so much fun recapping the highlights of the last year, that I invited Bob Newlin and Jonathan Fisher to join me to share their favorite episodes. We highlight Episode 2 with Keith Forte, Episode 8 with Ben Killoy, Episode 15 with Misty Moreno, Episode 16 and 17 with Herb Thompson and we look at another clip from Episode 19 with Adam Braatz. Jonathan and I revisit my resume episode with Alfredo Torres and we wrap up Episode 50 with Matt Scherer and Episode 52 with Don Gleason.
Celebrating One Year of the Lessons Learned for Vets Podcast - Part 1!
Episode 58: We are welcoming back our friend and, now three-time guest, Chris Dreisbach to recap his favorite episodes from the last year. We are so grateful to have you as our listener and want to thank you for tuning in to all the episodes. These recaps will wrap up our Season 1 of the show. Be on the lookout for Season 2 in early January 2022. More details to come!
Growing Stronger Through Adversity with Lakeydra Houston
Episode 57: Lakeydra Houston is currently going through her retirement from the United States Air Force. She is in the SkillBridge program and offers some program insight and advice. Lakeydra talks about her experience with sexual assault in the military and how her avoidance of that experience and other tragedies led her to attempt suicide. Today, she is committed to advocating for other victims and she talks about how she fought her way through the darkness to thriving today. If you or someone you know is struggling or having suicidal thoughts, you can reach help with the Suicide Crisis Number at 800-273-8255.
Showcasing Your Personality with Charlie Wells
Episode 56: After retiring from the US Marine Corps, Charles Wells had an easy transition. He quickly landed a good job in the private sector through networking. Within a few months, he was able to secure a position with the federal government, where he gets to continue making a difference for military service members. He attributes his "easy" transition to his mindset. Charlie is known for his humor and outgoing personality, but he has so much great advice about the military transition in this episode including his 6 steps to success, creating LinkedIn content and the importance of being authentic.
Navigating the Veteran Benefits Process with Cheryl Mason
Episode 55: Cheryl Mason is the Chairman of the Board of Veterans' Appeals. As a military spouse of a former USAF officer and the daughter of a veteran, Cheryl understands the veteran benefits process, both from a leadership perspective and a personal viewpoint. Cheryl gives input on navigating the benefits process, both as you transition and throughout your life as your needs change. She discusses the transition process as a military spouse and the importance of mental health awareness as her father and brother, both veterans, committed suicide. She shares many resources as well as the Suicide Crisis Number at 800-273-8255.
Military Transition Q&A with Jonathan Fisher
Episode 54: Jonathan Fisher is preparing to transition from a career in the US Army in aviation maintenance into the IT career field. He comes on to ask me questions about transition burnout, pursuing SkillBridge opportunities, how often and what to post on LinkedIn, how to translate transferable skills and how to take advantage of all the Veteran Service Organizations (VSOs) out there without getting overwhelmed. Jonathan also shares his news about landing two great SkillBridge offers and how he made the decision of which one to accept, even though the other one was his "dream" opportunity.
Focusing Your Job Search with Jason Willett
Episode 53: Jason Willett retired from the US Army as a Command Sergeant Major. He went from deployed overseas to retired in a very short period. That abrupt "full stop" caused some bumps in his transition, but after he focused on where he wanted to live and what he wanted to do, his networking efforts helped him land a great job. Though it was a good job, he found himself feeling unhappy and unfulfilled and he set out to discover his purpose. Jason shares his struggles and what he learned from that process as well as valuable insight into SkillBridge internships and networking.
Discovering Your Purpose with Don Gleason
Episode 52: Retired US Air Force officer Don Gleason knew exactly what he wanted to do with his career from a very young age. He had a successful military career and then a smooth transition to the private sector. However, his focus changed several years ago and he found a new purpose as a career coach and in serving veterans in transition. He walks you through his process of discovering your purpose, creating your life plan and shifting your point of view about the difficulty of your military transition.
Military Transition Q&A with Darwin Maull
Episode 51: Retiring US Army officer Darwin Maull gets the chance to ask Lori some of his important questions about the military transition. This episode touches on topics such as the most common pitfalls of the transition process, how to figure out your post-military career focus, when and how to use a "master" resume, how to learn to translate military terminology and "speak civilian," as well as tips for international job hunting and video interviews.
Leveraging LinkedIn with D. Matt Scherer
Episode 50: Matt Scherer retired from the Air Force from a career in public affairs. After completing his degree, he had a successful public relations career in the private sector. Today, Matt focuses his efforts on teaching LinkedIn profile creation and how to leverage your profile. He is the author of several books, including LinkedIn for Military: Your Interactive Transition Networking Guide. Matt and I walk you through creating your LinkedIn profile from top to bottom and then discuss how to effectively use this valuable job search tool.
Networking for Introverts with Quincy Harper
Episode 49: Quincy Harper landed and quit 4 jobs before he found the right position after he retired from the United States Air Force. Now, as a Military Recruiting Talent Lead with Accenture Federal Services, he shares some job seeker best practices and advice. We talk about how it felt, as a veteran who is naturally loyal, to quit those jobs and whether or not he regrets the path his transition took. For those of you who feel nervous about networking, be sure to tune in to hear Quincy's take on how he handles networking and seeking out mentors, even as an introvert.
Leaving the Safe Path Behind with Dr. Vincent Soto
Episode 48: Dr. Vincent Soto retired from the US Navy as a hospital corpsman. He knew his passion was teaching and training, but he chose the safe path and took a well-paying job in the healthcare industry. Though he stuck it out for 7 months, he knew from his first day that this job was not the right path for him. In this episode Vince talks about how he used networking to change career fields and he now uses his own experience to educate transitioning service members.
Asking the Right Interview Questions with Beau Higgins
Episode 47: Retired US Marine Corps officer Beau Higgins is a senior manager on Amazon’s Military Affairs team. He oversees a team of recruiters dedicated to educating, recruiting, hiring and retaining veteran talent and currently manages 30K job openings. After retiring in 2014, Beau attributes landing both of his post-military jobs to networking. As someone who has hired 1000s of veterans, Beau offers advice on job search strategies, resumes, job interviews, networking and finding the right culture fit.
Hitting the Pause Button with Lori Norris
Episode 46: With the events that have been unfolding this week in Afghanistan, I made the decision to hit the pause button on new episodes regarding transition. I want you to take this as your opportunity to remember that it is okay to take a break and hit pause on your transition efforts to take care of yourself and your family. Please take a minute to hear my message of gratitude and encouragement for all who have served - whether you directly deployed to Afghanistan or not. We will be back next week with our regular episodes!
Preparing for Post-military Culture Shock with Ryan Thuyns
Episode 45: After a USAF career that started in IT and telecommunications, Ryan Thuyns retired as a Command Chief. Ryan leaned into mentorship and accepted Lori's challenge to grow his LinkedIn network from <100 to 500+ connections in 6 weeks. In this episode, he not only shares his strategies for LinkedIn growth, he also talks about how he landed a leadership role at Amazon, 7 months before retirement! Stick around for the good stuff at the end when Ryan talks about the surprise culture shocks he has faced and wants other transitioning service members to prepare for.
Opening Your Mind to New Possibilities with Peter Cline
Episode 44: After serving 4 years in the US Army and being recognized as the 2020 NCO of the Year, Peter Cline made the decision to separate from the military and pursue his education. Along the way, he co-founded Boots to Books, a non-profit that is making a huge impact to service members in all facets of their transition - including college admission, certifications and trainings, grants and employment. Peter gives advice on starting a non-profit as well as tips on how to avoid undervaluing yourself and the importance of keeping your mind open to new career options.
Military Transition Q&A with Lisa Ceron
Episode 43: Lisa Ceron asks some great questions as she prepares for her retirement from the US Navy. We discuss mental health stigmas, being yourself in the job search and some of the "common denominators" of the military transition process. I ask her some questions about the lessons that she has learned about the transition process. Along the way, I share some coaching and insight about interview preparation, moving from "we" to "I" when discussing your accomplishments and much more.
Taking Control of Your Job Search Round 2 with Chris Dreisbach
Episode 42: You may remember USAF veteran Chris Dreisbach from Episode 25 when he shared with us the story of why he left his first post-military role within just 3 months. Chris is back to give us an update on what he's been doing, how he approached the next job search in a much more methodical way so that he had more control and tells us all about the great new role he landed. He changed his approach to interviewing and to researching his potential employer which he shares with you in this episode.
Going from Laid Off to Hired in 5 Hours with Marina Rabinek
Episode 41: US Navy veteran Marina Rabinek had a smooth transition. She started networking early, built a strong LinkedIn network, created a support tribe and participated in a SkillBridge internship that turned into a full-time role when she retired. Unfortunately, within 3 months her position was eliminated. That is when Marina's hard work and strong network paid off. Marina is a super-connector and master networker. In this episode, she shares how she went from being informed that she was laid-off to getting offered a new job in such a short time.
Simplifying Your Transition with William "Bill" Kieffer
Episode 40: Though his transition from the US Army was 20+ years ago, Bill Kieffer was unprepared for his transition. He had to quickly learn how to network, write a resume and market himself. He went on to build a successful career in human resources and is now a coach and mentor for service members and others in career transition. Bill discusses the upcoming launch of his book "Military Career Transition: Insights from the Employer Side of the Desk." He shares valuable insight, from the employers' point of view, into the job search and military transition process.
Growing and Sustaining Your Network with Clifton Clevenger
Episode 39: US Army veteran Clifton Clevenger served 10 years and has been a military spouse for 16 years. Cliff made some mistakes along the way, but he has become an expert networker. He is now dedicated to serving veterans and military spouses by providing job search support. He shares what he has learned along the way as he has had to restart his career 8 times due to military PCS moves. Listen in for Cliff's advice on networking, writing a resume, researching your potential employer and preparing for the job interview process.
Prioritizing Your Mental Health to Achieve Post-military Success with Ray Jokie
Episode 38: Ray Jokie had great success in the United States Air Force and his identity was closely tied to his USAF career. Unfortunately, when he retired, he struggled so much that he was not sure if he would make it to the next day. Thankfully, he found several sources of support and refocused on his mental health in order to pull himself out of a rough period. Now, as a talent acquisition specialist, Ray shares not only his struggles, but also his advice for connecting with recruiters, building your resume and networking to achieve success.
Networking Strategically and Knowing your Recruiters with Wayne Worthington
Episode 37: USMC veteran Wayne Worthington went from his 5-year service into the executive recruiting career field. Wayne gives us his insider's perspective on the different types of recruiters, strategies to optimize your success working with recruiters and even shares a few names of veteran-focused recruiting agencies. Additionally, Wayne has a great strategy for networking strategically and building your own transition accountability and support group.
Accepting Change and Practicing Gratitude - Even in the Face of Traumatic Events with Justin Constantine
Episode 36: Wounded Warrior and USMC veteran Justin Constantine was shot in the head by a sniper in Iraq and though he has had countless reconstructive surgeries, he has gone on to build his own business, enjoy a successful career with a workforce development company and launch a non-profit called Veteran Success Resource Group. In 2020, Justin was diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer, but listen in as he shares how his attitude toward life has helped him succeed, despite all the setbacks he has faced.
Getting Comfortable with being Uncomfortable to Find the Right Fit with Greg Fischer
Episode 35: Greg Fischer served 4 years and 3 combat tours in the US Marine Corps. When he separated from the military, he went to school, completed his degree and took a job in insurance and finance. On the surface his transition looked seamless. However, he was not happy in this role. In 2020, Greg and a business partner started Burn Pit BBQ teaching people how to barbecue and selling rubs and sauces. Listen as Greg discusses what helped him make this change and all the times he had to learn to embrace discomfort in order to move forward toward a fulfilling career.
Making the Connection between Military Skills and Your New Career with Dave Poole
Episode 34: 21-year USMC veteran Dave Poole served as a combat engineer who successfully landed a post-military role in software development. In this episode Dave takes us through how he made this big career change. Networking and mentorship through a new connection he met on LinkedIn played a key role in him landing this new role. He also participated in the Microsoft Software and Systems Academy (MSSA) SkillBridge program and shares some resources he developed to help other veterans interested in MSSA.
Improving Your Marketability and Enhancing Your Leadership Skills with the RBLP Certification
Episode 33: USMC veteran Mark Holman and US Navy veteran Marina Rabinek discuss the Resilience-Building Leader Program and the value of the Resilience-Building Leadership Professional certification. Listen in as Mark tells us how the certification program can improve your ability to communicate your value and Marina takes us through the program and how active duty service members can pay for their certification before they transition.
Bouncing Back from Getting Fired to Finding the Right Fit with the Federal Government with Cindy Dorfner
Episode 32: Cindy Dorfner retired from the USAF in 2013. She quickly landed a director-level role in the private sector and although she wasn't happy with the role herself, within 6 months she was fired from her first post-military job. Today, she holds a high-level leadership role in the federal government and has found that the environment is a better fit for her. She shares her insight on successfully applying with and working for the federal government, both as a job seeker and a hiring authority.
Honoring the Military Spouse in the Transition with Shelley-Rose Illig
Episode 31: In honor of Military Spouse Appreciation Day, we are hearing from Shelley-Rose Illig. Rose is the spouse of US Army active duty soldier and now US Army reservist. Rose is a business analyst and project coordinator with a financial institution. However, the transition out of the military was neither planned nor a smooth process for her and her husband. We discuss the challenges of the military transition from the spouse's perspective. Rose also has some great financial insight that you may not have considered yet in your planning process.
Pursuing Your Dreams After the Military with Chris McGhee
Episode 30: After retiring from the Air Force, Chris McGhee made the decision to pursue his lifelong dream of going to law school. Listen in as Chris talks about how his maturity and his military career has helped him get through the challenges of law school. In addition, Chris shares the lessons he has learned about networking, navigating the online application process and his own strategies for success in acing the job interview. Chris also highlights his podcast "20 Years Done" focused on aircraft maintenance.
Adapting to the High-tech Culture as a Veteran with Jerry Prochazka
Episode 29: A Navy veteran and a veteran of the gaming industry, Jerry Prochazka transitioned out of his military service as a nuclear engineer and is now the CEO and co-founder of Ganymede Games, a start-up game design company that is launching its first game later this year. Jerry shares insight into the different structure and communication style of the tech industry while also discussing the common factors he has seen among the veterans who achieved success in high-tech careers.
Negotiating the Salary You're Worth and Translating Your Skills with Mark Holman
Episode 28: Mark Holman retired from the US Marine Corps 10+ years ago. He shares the transition mistakes he made as well as valuable insight for job seekers that he has gained as an executive leader and hiring manager. Mark and Lori give advice about how to research your value and have the salary conversation with your future employer. Also, Mark gives a real-world example of how to translate military leadership into terms any private sector employer will understand.
Military Transition Q&A and a Bonus Success Story with Robert "Bob" Newlin
Episode 27: Bob Newlin asks some great job search and military transition strategy questions as he prepares to retire from the United States Air Force from an overseas location. In this episode we talk about value-add versus non-value-add job search tasks, who to connect with on LinkedIn and beating the ATS. As a bonus, Bob comes back for a follow up to share some exciting news and give you his "4 BE's" that contributed to his relatively new military transition success.
Finding Your Why, What and Where You're Going with Justin Pearson
Episode 26: Retired Army leader Justin Pearson has been a mentor and advocate in the military transition space since 2016. Justin has held senior leadership roles with companies such as AAFMAA and Wells Fargo. He discusses how he navigated the transition landscape before there were so many resources available, how he found his way to networking and mentorship and what he learned from his stumbles and struggles.
Finding out Your Dream Job is a Nightmare with Chris Dreisbach
Episode 25: On the surface, 21-year USAF veteran Chris Dreisbach had a seemingly perfect transition - from service to SkillBridge to multiple job offers and a great job above his salary goals. Within 3 months he was overworked and unhappy. He had the courage to leave his first post-military job that wasn't right for him. He shares what he learned along the way and highlights how this podcast helped him through it all.
Overcoming Early Trauma and Building Resiliency with Ericka Kelly
Episode 24: Ericka Kelly retired from the US Air Force Reserve where she was one of the top 3 Chief Enlisted Master Sergeants and from Federal Law Enforcement, working for the Department of Homeland Security Customs and Border Protection Agency. This episode is a bit different in that it starts with stories of Ericka's earlier life that shaped her resiliency and built who she was in the military and is today.
Writing Your Military Transition Resume Part 2 with Alfredo Torres
Episode 23: In the 2nd part of the episode with US Navy veteran Alfredo Flores, he and host Lori Norris discuss the resume. They cover subjects such as should you pay for assistance with a resume and offer tips on what a good resume should include. To wrap up, Alfredo shares his lessons learned during his career as a veteran in transition, a veteran advocate and educator.
Adapting to Overcome Military Transition Barriers with Alfredo Torres
Episode 22: After suffering what he calls a "very painful transition," US Navy veteran Alfredo Torres has today settled into his role as the Virginia Transition Assistance Program Regional Coordinator. He dedicates his time and efforts to helping other veterans avoid the obstacles he faced. In part 1 of this two-part episode, Alfredo shares his thoughts on how veterans can adapt to achieve success.
Military Transition Q&A with Derek Moore
Episode 21: USMC veteran Derek Moore asks some great questions about the transition process such as the importance of SkillBridge and mentors, the best job search websites, the pros and cons of professional resumes and Lori's top 5 transition preparation action items. Additionally, he shares how he was able to prioritize his education while serving, as he will have almost finished a doctorate degree.
Following the Non-traditional Post-military Path with Amanda Huffman
Episode 20: After serving 6 years in the Air Force, Amanda Huffman traded in her combat boots for a diaper bag and focused on being a stay-at-home mom. Along the way, she discovered a passion for sharing stories of women in the military as a blog and book author and host of a podcast. In the episode, she shares some of her most important lessons she learned along the way.
Strategies to Fight Veteran Underemployment with Adam Braatz
Episode 19: After a diverse USAF career as a member of the USAF band and as a Military Training Instructor, Adam separated from the Air Force to pursue private sector employment, working for both corporations and non-profits. He learned the importance of knowing his value and networking to avoid underemployment. He gets candid about his struggle with depression and his lessons learned.
Expanding Your Post-military Career Options by Achieving Financial Stability with Patrick Weinert
Episode 18: Retired USMC officer Patrick Weinert discusses how to remove financial success road blocks in your life and how to achieve more freedom in your post-military career. He offers his advice on how to manage your finances and provides insight into how he successfully launched a financial coaching business.
Own Your Transition Part 2 with Herb Thompson
Episode 17: In the second half of my conversation with Herb Thompson, retired US Army Green Beret and Drill Instructor, he talks about how important it is to make your transition your own experience and truly take ownership of the process. Herb shares what he would do differently if he could go back and do it all over again and he closes the episode with his biggest lessons learned.
Deploying to the U.S. & Learning to Speak Civilian with Herb Thompson
Episode 16: Retired US Army Green Beret and Drill Sergeant Herb Thompson discusses his approach to planning for his military transition. This planning process was the catalyst for him to write his book "The Transition Mission." Listen in for Part 1 of the 2-part episode, as Herb discusses how he learned to "speak civilian" and translate his skills.
Landing your Next Role by Building a LinkedIn Presence with Misty Moreno
Episode 15: Misty Moreno is a LinkedIn "success story." As she was preparing to retire from the US Air Force, she followed all the steps, created a LinkedIn profile and strategically started building an online presence. She shares her LinkedIn strategy that landed her a position and many more great insights about post-military employment.
Navigating the Federal Job Search Process with Chip Lankert of FEMA
Episode 14: USMC veteran and recruiter for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Chip joins me to discuss federal employment. From the federal resume writing process to tips on how to succeed in a federal interview, Chip gives valuable insight into this process that can be daunting for many people.
Military Transition Q&A with MaryKate Soliva
Episode 13: US Army veteran MaryKate Soliva asks me some great questions about the military transition process such as how to leverage volunteer work in your transition, how to involve your spouse in the transition and networking best practices for introverts. MaryKate also practices marketing herself to potential employers.
Don't Be Afraid to Pivot and Start Over with Jennifer Foxworthy
Episode 12: After retiring from the US Navy, Jennifer decided to follow a non-traditional path of becoming a motivational speaker and launching a non-profit. The journey has not been without obstacles and Jennifer gets real about the pivots and changes she has had to make being self-employed.
Creating Your Long-term Transition Plan with Gregory Austin
Episode 11: As an analytical engineering manager trained in Lean Six Sigma, Greg leveraged these skills to achieve post-military success as a Process Engineer after retiring from the United States Air Force. Listen as Greg teaches you his next-level transition planning strategy.
The 5 Most Common Transition Obstacles with Michael Radynski
Episode 10: After retiring from the Marine Corps, Mike quickly found a job through networking. After 4 years, Mike left that job to follow his passion and live in his dream state. Mike also discovered the 5 most common obstacles of a typical military transition while researching his Master's thesis.
Transitioning Out of the Military with PTS with Kristin Scott
Episode 9: Listen as a retired Navy Chief shares insights on the SkillBridge program. She also gets candid about how she found post-military career success while dealing with Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) and opens up about a life-changing PTS treatment to manage her symptoms.
Discovering Your Legacy with Ben Killoy
Episode 8: After separating from the USMC, Ben spent 7 years in a corporate job before discovering his purpose to serve veteran dads as a podcast host, instructor and blogger. Ben shares an important lesson about focusing on your own personal legacy.
Leveraging Free Resources with Matthew Langseth
Episode 7: After serving in the Army and National Guard, Matt landed his first role after the military through the power of networking. In this episode, Matt shares his lessons learned about LinkedIn, Vets2Industry and other resources and VSOs available for veterans.
The Power of Mentorship with John Mazza
Episode 6: As a retired USAF Command Chief, John was looking for senior leadership roles. It took longer than he expected, but he landed a great job. John discusses what caused him to change jobs several times his first few post-military years.
Military Transition Q&A with Mark Gavin
Episode 5: In this bonus episode, Mark, an Army veteran in transition, asks transition questions such as resume length, interview prep, video interviews and more. Mark also gets the opportunity to practice marketing himself to potential employers.
Figuring Out Who You Are with Rob Rens
Episode 4: After separating from the USMC, Rob spent many years in corporate America before launching his own business. Rob advocates for taking the time to figure out who YOU want to be outside of the military as a priority.
Trusting Your Instincts with Wendy Brazier
Episode 3: Wendy landed an HR role a few months after she retired from the USAF and has continued to progress into higher level roles. Not only does she share how she did it, as a hiring authority, she gives great interview and job search tips.
Finding the Right Culture Fit with Keith Forte
Episode 2: After retiring from the USAF, and changing jobs 4 times in 6 years, Along the way, Keith learned the importance of finding your purpose and the best cultural fit. Keith advocates for giving your transition the time and attention it deserves.
An Introduction to Your Podcast Team
Episode 1: A quick intro to Lori Norris, your host, and Charlan Rieve, our editor and behind-the-scenes mastermind. In this introduction to us, we will tell you about the purpose of our podcast, what you can expect and why we both got involved in the podcast project.