November is Veterans and Military Families Month. And all this month, WorkingNation is taking a look at issues veterans face when looking for work after they have transitioned out of the military.

In this episode, we talk with Jim Lorraine, president and CEO of America’s Warrior Partnership (AWP), and Joshua Wilson, who manages AWP’s corporate relationships. Both are veterans and know firsthand some of the challenges servicemen and women face as they try to navigate the civilian job market.

Lorraine says one of the biggest issues veterans face is trying to find a sense of purpose in their work. “When you’re serving in the military, the accomplishment of the mission is really the purpose. So what I see is veterans who go into the workplace, they’re looking for something bigger than themselves. And a lot of the times it’s just not available.”

Wilson says another big issue is retention. Eighty percent of veterans leave their first civilian job within two years.

“The problem with retention is really a problem with transition/translation. I never really disclosed my veteran status when I originally started looking for work because I didn’t know if it was going to hurt me or not. And I didn’t ask for help on the resume because I thought well if people look at me as a war fighter I’m not about to ask them how to write a single page.”

So how do we address these problems, both as veteran employees and employers? Lorraine and Wilson share some of their ideas.

We hope you enjoy the conversation which took place at AWP’s Warrior Community Integration Symposium in Atlanta.

You can find Work in Progress, a WorkingNation podcast, anywhere you get your podcasts. Search Work in Progress and look for our logo.

Episode 105: Veterans seek a sense of purpose in work
Host: Ramona Schindelheim, WorkingNation Editor-in-Chief
Producer: Anny Celsi
Executive Producers: Joan Lynch, Melissa Panzer, and Ramona Schindelheim
Music: Composed by Lee Rosevere and licensed under CC by 4.0.

Follow more of our Vets Deserve Good Jobs coverage here.

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