31% of veterans leave an employer within the first year due to a lack of advancement opportunities. (Syracuse University The Institute For Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) and VetAdvisor)

Your initial thought maybe 

“It could take years to promote an employee. Their expectations are unrealistic.” 


“We don’t have the budget to promote every veteran who walks threw our doors.” 

The thought of implementing a noticeable increase in promotions in the wake of COVID-19 may overwhelm you.

Let me calm your nerves. Slowing down and even stopping the retention hemorrhage due to the lack of advancement opportunities is easier and more cost effective than you think. 

Many veterans are not necessarily leaving because of the lack of actual promotion, but the lack of knowing the rules of engagement. From day one of a veteran’s service they are told what the standard of performance and attitude look like and how to exceed that standard. They are shown various avenues of acquiring the knowledge necessary for advancement. Like many civilians, it often takes years to advance to a position of management. During those years, veterans are continuously being groomed and trained. Professional development is a daily task that not only prepares them for greater responsibility and technical proficiency, but it is a display that their chain of command cares for them enough to prepare them. 

Introducing frequent professional development opportunities at the team level can be very cost-effective impactful. Being candid about what it takes to be promoted within your organization develops loyalty, trust, and hope. Top that off with micro-leadership responsibly that help the veteran display what they have learned and developed accomplishes three things;

  1. Solidifies veteran engagement,
  2. Ignites emotional and personal investment in the mission of the organization, and
  3. Demonstrates a genuine interest in the veteran’s development.

The best time to implement a professional development opportunity is during the veteran’s orientation. The sooner you plant the seeds of advancement potential the deeper the veteran’s roots of loyalty to the organization go.

If you need help improving your retention rate, replay to this email or call us at (864) 671-0414. 

Syracuse University The Institute For Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) and VetAdvisor. (n.d.). Veteran Job Retention Survey Summary. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University.

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