A Call to Action: 2012 Operation Holiday

Our veterans and military families need our help now more than ever. With unemployment at an all time high, veterans are having a tough time moving from military service to civilian life. To honor their commitment to our country, we seek your help to make a difference during the holidays. Operation Holiday is one of the ways that we honor their service.

For the past three years, the San Fernando Valley Veterans Employment Committee has provided veterans and their families with toys, clothing, and a complete dinner during the holiday season. Given the current economic environment, our goal is to help as many veterans as possible. To carry out this task, we need your help.

2012 Operation Holiday Wish List:

  • $50 donation (becomes a complete Holiday Dinner for a veteran/family)
  • Gift cards (Target, Wal-Mart, Toys-R-Us; Von’s, etc.)
  • Donation of new, unwrapped toys and non-perishable food items

If you wish to take part in our 2012 Operation Holiday, volunteer, or make a financial donation online, you may do so at the link below.

The San Fernando Valley Veterans Employment Committee (SFV|VEC) is an organization dedicated to providing veterans and military families with employment related help. They work in partnership with various federal and state agencies, employers, training institutions and nonprofit entities. They also host and organize events geared toward connecting veteran job seekers to employment opportunities and social services throughout the year.

The San Fernando Valley Veterans Employment Committee operates under a fiscal sponsorship with the Los Angeles Veterans Employment Committee, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. Accordingly, your donations are tax-deductible.

TO REGISTER, VOLUNTEER, OR DONATE

Please contact the VEC at 818.835.1229 if you have any questions or need more information. On behalf of the Committee, thank you for helping us make this Holiday Season special for those who unselfishly served our country.


Resumes, Cover Letters and Online Job Search Accounts

 

Employment is not only a game of numbers, it is one of quality. Specifically, quality of the applicant. Competition is fierce. You only have one shot to make a memorable impression on a potential employer. You want to do all you can to set yourself apart from the rest of the herd. And all the decisions related to you and your resume – pass, fail or circular file (or, “digital trashcan”), occur in your absence, sans an opportunity for rebuttal.

After all, you are the better (best!) candidate, RIGHT?

Simply put – for each and every career opportunity that you apply to, it is in your best interest to tailor/customize BOTH your cover letter and resume to meet the criteria outlined in the job description. Feels a bit oily, right? A bit more work, right? Take a moment, and get over it. You are in competition with a lot of other people for the same position, and you deserve to give yourself the best chance. Just don’t embellish.

Simply cutting/pasting the address block on top of the same cover letter and sending it to a potential employer will not suffice. How would you feel if you got a letter in an envelope that appeared reused?

The same effort applies to online applications/job search accounts; use up every slot available for resume storage with multiple versions of your CV. That’s what they are there for.  Being the one of the first to apply matters, so having several relevant versions of your resume at the ready could make the difference.

It takes more time, but your effort will cause you to stand out among the others (who might take shortcuts), and cause you to think deeply about each opportunity you apply for.

This method positions you to formulate questions (which you should begin thinking about now) to ask once you are called in for an interview. Yes, presume that you will get a call.

Taking these steps consistently puts you in the mindset of a successful, soon to be employed, candidate.

What are your thoughts?

 

Why Hire Veterans?

As the conflicts in the Middle East end, our attention shifts toward the men, women and families who seek to make the transition from military service to civilian life. After serving the country, these people seek to establish a career, continue their education, and re-engage with their families.

There are plenty of myths and misperceptions that exist when it comes to the skills, abilities and training of veterans (military spouses too), and how they can “fit” into society as employees. In this post we intend to discuss some of these issues, and illuminate some of the reasons why employers should hire veterans.

POINT #1: 
Veterans are great candidates for employment. They are well-trained, reliable, dedicated to task, culturally competent and focused. They are team-oriented and work well under pressure, and are resilient.

Today’s military runs more like a large-scale corporation than ever before. Many veterans have skills that relate directly to civilian employment, such as Accounting, Supply Chain Management, Logistics, Administration, Human Resources, etc., just to name a few.

POINT #3:
Having veterans on your staff will improve the bottom line. Veterans consistently give 200% on the job, and can serve as an example for other team members to follow. They show up on time and work until the assignment is completed.

Their work ethic serves as a catalyst for overall business improvement. Performing “above and beyond the call of duty,” is the norm. This level of performance directly impacts productivity and efficiency. Their effort/example raises the bar for everyone.

Successful employers (and some of our proud partners) are: Time Warner Cable, JP Morgan Chase, ONTIC Aviation. These companies hire veterans consistently in various capacities, and report great success working with veterans.

POINT #4:
Hiring Veterans Builds our Communities and Stabilizes the Local Economy.

When they buy homes and other durable goods, they help support and stabilize our local economy. As they raise their families and reintegrate into the community, these activities have a direct and positive impact on all of our lives as a whole.

POINT #5:
Hiring Veterans is an act of Patriotism. While they are less than one percent of the general population (aka, the 99%), veterans and their families make a tremendous commitment and sacrifice for our country, by providing for its security and safety.

Serving in the Armed Forces is a choice – a noble and worthwhile one – but it should not become an obstacle to future opportunities once that service ends.

It is up to us not just meet, but exceed the level of dedication set forth by their example. Hiring a veteran is one of many ways for us as Americans to say, “Thank you for your service.”

What are your thoughts?