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Why Hire Vets?

As Veteran’s Day approached I was asked whether I had any experience in hiring vets over the years as a manager in radio and now owner of a media company going into its 29th year. I was also asked if this was a positive experience for me or for us.

Both questions are easy to answer. Yes. And, yes.

As I thought back over the years, I couldn’t think of one instance where the hire [of the veteran] turned sour. In fact, without knowing why, because of my positive past experience of hiring both men and women vets, when I run an ad for an employee and I see where one of the applications happens to be a veteran, I quickly move that person to the top of the pile and dig in to see if there is a match for what we’re seeking. You’ll understand why as you read on.

To begin, I find most veterans highly adaptable, more mature than most, and more malleable than most. They have also proven to be more dedicated and hardworking than most. They’ve been eager to jump into whatever is asked of them and have already learned how to get along with a wide variety of people and age groups. With outstanding work ethics and a wonderful sense of humor—at least in my experiences—they make acquaintances and friends quickly, which is extremely important as you bring someone new into the mix of others.

We currently have several veterans working for us. I’d like to tell you about one of them.

John Selzler had worked for us part time for quite a number of years until about two years ago when we’d grown to the point of needing to designate a full time person to handle all of the logistics surrounding getting our new customers up and running with our service.

John’s work for On-Hold Concepts is exemplary but that’s not the John I want to talk about. John is a vet and a very talented musician and devotes himself to helping veterans here in the South Puget Sound region that are homeless, or that are simply in need of a little (or a lot of) lifting up from the stresses, sacrifices and/or wounds of war and service. His music speaks to all vets but most directly to those that are in need, and of course, their families. As John has reminded me, it’s not just the veteran that needs uplifting. It’s also the family members that worry, that wait, that have to deal with the shock of whatever their man or woman brings home with them—if they make it back home at all.

John’s cause, if you will, has a name. It’s called Music Works For Vets. Check out John’s Facebook page here.

Growing up a military brat myself, I know of what he speaks. I think my father was gone more than he was at home. This call of duty is what the veteran is all about. So perhaps it’s from a sense of wanting to repay the vets for their sacrifices that has me pay special attention to a veteran’s resume’ that comes my way. It matters not, the why. It’s a win-win for sure.

There are many other stories of veterans just like John. Dedicated men and women who continue to give back – not only to the company where they are employed, but to fellow veterans, co-workers, and the community they live in. They know and have experienced the benefits of being part of something greater than themselves. Whether it is playing music on the weekends, tutoring kids after school, or volunteering as a coach – they continue to have a positive impact on those around them. By supporting veterans you will join a movement whose impact reaches far greater that you can possibly imagine.

Take a moment to honor veterans, not just on this day, but every day by giving them the opportunity to add their wisdom and experience to your staff and the customers you serve. I believe you will find, as I have, that the benefits reap rewards that are tangible (a solid team member with excellent work ethic) and intangible (uplifting and rewarding relationships which remind us why we serve our communities in the first place).

John, we salute you and all our distinguished veterans for your service. Thank you.

John is a very gifted musician but it’s pretty obvious his love of vets and helping them trumps his own needs and desires. We all see him donating countless hours to the development of music concerts, fundraisers, clothing drives, and special appearances. I don’t believe a week goes by without John appearing with his band, guitar in hand, playing at a local club, coffee shop or just about any stage he can find—and always with music and stories for and about veterans.

This of course impacts all of us at our company that work with John. We find ourselves on the bandwagon so to speak, attending events, and contributing in one way or another to help. Being a part of something greater than oneself; helping others, is uplifting, rewarding, and beneficial in so many ways, not the least of which is to be able to focus your energy and compassion outwards instead of inwards, if even just for the moment.

Chuck Woodstock
On-Hold Concepts, Inc./Woodstock Media Group

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