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What does your employee badge say? Actions speak louder than words.

By Steve Geary | 03/01/2014 | 5:55 PM

As our military continues to downsize, as our sons and daughters come home from Afghanistan, we owe them a lot.

The least we can do is hire them. 

Some companies – I wish I could say lots of companies – are aggressively recruiting veterans, and really going the extra mile in providing a supportive environment to help veterans make a transition into the civilian workforce. 

Of course, there is more than a little self-interest, too.  The company is taking advantage of all that the military has shared with these veterans - leadership, innovation, experience, world view, loyalty, team work, discipline – in addition to the technical training and skill gained while in uniform.

This past week I noticed something I’ve never noticed before.  Now, before I go any further, I need to offer a disclaimer.  There may be other organizations that do this.  There may be a lot of other companies that do this.  All I am saying is that I’ve never noticed it anywhere before, and it is worthy of recognition.

I spent the last week with a bunch of folks from the Boeing Company.  One day, when I sat down for a one-on-one conversation with one of the Boeing employees, I saw it.  Right there on the employee badge, in big bold letters under the employee picture, it said, “Air Force Veteran.”

With that simple gesture, Boeing is accomplishing so much.

Boeing is telling the employee that their service mattered, and that the company honors the sacrifice.  Boeing is telling the rest of us that service to the country matters, and is worthy of recognition.  Boeing isn’t just saying that it cares; Boeing is showing that it cares.

And, of course, they are turning every one of their employees into a recruiter.  Boeing does a lot of business with the military.  That means that their folks sit down with a lot of people in uniform, and it’s as if their people are wearing a billboard saying, “We value vets, and we are hiring.” 

That is smart, smart business. I guess there is a reason that Boeing consistently shows up on “Top 10” lists of great places for veterans to consider as employers.

Note:  if you know of any other companies that do this, please drop me an email so I can give credit where credit is due.  steve@dcvelocity.com



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About Mike Rudolph

Mike Rudolph

Mike Rudolph is a recently retired Marine Colonel with over 30 years of operational experience, proven leadership, and management success in the logistics and supply chain management fields. He is an executive consultant with ROSE Solutions and the Supply Chain Visions family of companies - consultancies that work throughout the government sector. Mike led the Marine Corps Supply Chain and Life Cycle Management Center at Marine Corps Logistics Command - responsible for supply chain and life cycle management of all ground weapon systems, equipment, and reparable components, the depot maintenance program, and equipment prepositioning program. During 2004-2008, he served two tours of duty in Anbar Province, Iraq as the G-4 for Multi-National Force – West, supporting all combat operations and coalition efforts to revitalize Iraqi economic development and stability. Mike's efforts were recognized with the Bronze Star for his first tour and the Legion of Merit for his second. He was widely recognized as a visionary and innovator in the Marine Corps logistics community.


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