As a military spouse, one of the most challenging things when job hunting and interviewing is explaining how your employment and volunteer history make you the right person for the job.
With a resume that spans continents and shows creativity hiding gaps, employers are not going to get the full gist of your skill set unless you bring it all to the table. We encourage spouses to let their MadSkills shine. Here are 4 quick ways you can help people understand the increased value you bring to the table as a military spouse:
The years you spend overseas or in a different part of the country will change you, for the better. You’ve been forced to change your thoughts, to learn a new language, transportation system, navigate a new city, or a menu in a foreign language. You offer them diversity and cultural affluence (even use that term in conversation.)
You have experience in reinventing yourself each time you’ve moved, and that can easily transfer to settling into a new job quickly and pivoting quickly with the internal movement of the company needs and goals. You hit the ground running every few years and you can get up to speed almost overnight.
No one multi-tasks like a military spouse. No one. In fact, having only one or two things to do ends up feeling like slacking. You can easily manage deadlines, projects or events on top of your assigned job duties and accomplish goals #likeaboss.
Make sure you talk about the time you were successful in working, solo parenting, and helping organize the fundraiser that gave $30,000 back into the community all at the same time. (Because we’ve all been there more than once.)
My favorite meme reads, “Kevin Bacon has nothing on Military Spouses.” It’s so true! You can probably walk up to a stranger in the commissary today, ask to friend them on Facebook, and find anywhere from 1 – 52 friends in common. We could literally make a game out of this!!
Degrees of separation are not far apart in the military community. The beauty in those close degrees is that it’s actually degrees of connection and not separation. The connections that the nomadic lifestyle warrants us extends far beyond Facebook friends and newbie handshakes. The connections live and breathe through stories and friendships.
Need a florist for the event the company needs planned in another state, you know the perfect spouse.
Have a question about what hotel your boss should stay in for her next conference in Tampa? You lived in one for 7 weeks while you waited on housing and made friends with the staff.
Seriously, you know someone who knows someone in every industry, every state, and all across the world.
4. Problem Solving
Employers want to hear how you are going to solve their problems, bring solutions to the table, and ultimately make them more money. Here is where military spouses truly shine. You are a master problem solver.
Have an example or two from your arsenal ready to share. Make sure that the employer knows that this is a daily occurrence for you, that you are ready to deliver solutions and make problems disappear, both in the short term and the long term.
Bottom line up front: Don’t sell yourself short. Use the experiences you’ve been lucky enough to have on this roller coast military life to increase your value when interviewing for a job. You are perfect for this job, so go get it!