WASHINGTON, Nov. 16, 2012 – The Marine Corps’ first living Medal of Honor recipient from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars told a gathering of U.S. business leaders here yesterday that hiring veterans is a mutually beneficial practice.
Dakota Meyer was a keynote speaker at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s fifth annual “Business Steps Up: Hiring Our Heroes” event.
"If you want to thank a veteran," Meyer told the audience, "I can tell you how: Hire him."
Meyer said companies that hire veterans are taking advantage of "an opportunity for both," not performing an act of charity.
"I want to tell you you're not giving these guys anything,” he told the employers. “You're providing them an opportunity that will also help you out. And once you give them an opportunity and hold them accountable, I can guarantee you these men and women have been in way worse circumstances than your company will ever be in. And they're going to be the ones that make a difference and stand out."
Meyer acknowledged that young veterans fresh out of the military often find it difficult to talk to employers.
"Military guys are a team," he said. "There's no 'I' -- they don't talk about themselves. It's teamwork. It's a team effort. So how can they pitch themselves to you and tell what they're good at? It's hard."
Meyer used his own background as a Marine Corps sniper to illustrate his point.
"Give me a show of hands of how many employers need a sniper," he said. When no hands were raised, he tried again.
"How many employers are looking for teamwork, promptness, accountability, and managing personnel in stressful environments?” he asked. “I'd say quite a few. And that's what every single veteran who raises his right hand to serve our military can bring to the table. They've proven it." read more>>>