James D. Murphy and William M. Duke Empower and Educate Veterans in New Book, DOWN RANGE
A veteran's transition from military to civilian life is a major life event that requires careful planning. In their new book, "Down Range: A Transitioning Veteran's Career Guide to Life's Next Phase" (WILEY; December 2013; Paperback & e-book; $25) authors James D. Murphy and William M. Duke follow a proven career-planning process, one born of military principles and skills that veterans possess and businesses need. Murphy and Duke aim to help veterans tap those principles to develop a career and to demonstrate their value to potential employees.
"This career guide for veterans is unique and empowering for two reasons. First, it is written by veterans who made the transition and now lead a successful civilian business, which consults with corporations large and small all over the world. Second, it explains a simple and effective planning process that has been taught to over one million business leaders, a process born of military experience," says Duke.
This is not simply a guide for U.S. military veterans coming off active duty transitioning from the military to the civilian world or a guide to getting a job. This book is a guide to developing a post-military career, not just for the first few days, weeks, or months after active duty, but for the rest of a veteran's employed life.
"At long last, America has restarted her economic engine. Jobs are returning, revenues are growing, stock values are rising, but American business has moved past this century's first financial crisis only to face another - a crisis of leadership," says Murphy. "Veterans have spent years - and often decades - learning how to execute as a team. We've operated under pressure, with limited information, in fluid combat scenarios. We may not yet possess industry vocabulary or a deep understanding of civilian business, but we have the skills modern companies need, and we can, with exceptional speed, learn to use them effectively in this new context."
"Down Range's" simple and effective planning process contains insight including:
- Challenges the reader to change their mindset and understand just how different the "wilderness" of civilian employment is from their military experience.
- Provides an appreciation for what's important and the general functions of a business.
- Builds an adaptable long range career plan called a Career High Definition Destination (HDD) across a spectrum of seven key areas - Interests/Industry, Advancement, Money/Compensation, Security, People/Philosophy, Challenge, and Location
- Identifies the common and individually specific threats or obstacles to achieving that Career HDD.
- Identifies the resources available or needed to achieve the Career HDD.
- An appendix and a comprehensive checklist that veterans can follow in order to prepare for and execute a winning interview.
Murphy adds, "Despite what many military transition courses seem to tell us, we are not square pegs destined for a limited number of stereotyped roles. We must shed the fear and burden of that false mindset, and instead seize the boundless opportunity before us. Sometimes the first and hardest step is preparing mentally for a transition to civilian life and in our first few chapters we lay out some advice to do just that."