I am often asked to answer questions about the HirePatriots program in order to help reporters write about our unique program. Here are some answers to common questions.
Tell us about HirePatriots.com … when and why did you start your site? A wounded US Marine from Camp Pendleton knocked on our door and asked if we had any work for him around our home or yard so that he could get the electricity and heat turned back on in his house. He had returned from Iraq just a few minutes before to find his wife and two small children living in poverty. His wife was laid off from her hospital job soon after he was deployed. She did not want to worry him, so he did not know about his family’s dire circumstance until he got home.
We created a One Day job board so that local residents could hire local Marines when they needed help too. After getting the word out here in San Diego, we had an overwhelming response. 10,000 people a week began coming to our website! We expanded our job postings with a full time job board. And because of the multiple combat deployments on the base, we also began holding 3 day, all expenses paid, Military marriage Retreats. Camp Pendleton at that time had a divorce rate that was incredibly high among their enlisted. We believe that all the couples that attended our multiple retreats are still together.
Why is it important to you to help veterans find work … what sparked your interest? Enlisted US military men and women do not make much money. Most struggle tremendously. Many get food stamps and government surplus food, particularly the ones who get married and have children. Then, when they get out, they have no applicable work experience if they have been in the Infantry, which 80% of US Marines are.
Giving our military members, veterans and their spouses a way to help community residents to earn extra money has been a wonderful win-win. Many veterans will take months and even years before finding sustainable employment. These jobs prevent suicide and divorce during that period and ameliorates PTSD.
What are some of the challenges facing veterans in search of work today? & Why is unemployment such a big problem for veterans?There are 3 major issues: One, it is difficult to translate military training and experience into civilian speak that companies can understand and then hire veterans. Two, there is a lot of mis-information about PTSD. It has been sensationalized. Most veterans in combat are traumatized by seeing their friends die horribly and all the massive destruction, damage and death they see everyday. Anyone would be. But they have been prepared for this experience and have a huge support group. Civilians actually have far more PTSD than our military population from life’s trauma. But the yellow journalism that has been spread by unscrupulous journalist have made people think that veterans are dangerous. HR managers have actually said, “I would like to hire veterans but I have to protect my employees. I cannot have them catching PTSD.” This is incredible ignorance! Three, the military life is regimented and disciplined. The civilian world and the jobs it offers do not compare. It is difficult for trained veterans to enter a workforce that seems to them in disarray and without order.
Why do veterans and military families make great employees? Military training and experience makes mature adults that work well with others and that respects leadership. They know how to be given a mission and then accomplish it, regardless of obstacles and hardships along the way. They will not quit!
What is your One Day job board? What types of jobs are on it? Who can post jobs there? How can I help bring HirePatriots.com job listings to my hometown? Our One Day job board is free for everyone. Say what the job is, where it is, how much you can pay and then leave your name and phone number. Here in San Diego it takes about 2 minutes to get a response. The veterans or their spouse will show up and treat you with military courtesy and work as hard as they can. Pay them at the end. They keep all the money. Any kind of chore or repair correlates with some job on a military base.
We give companies, schools, communities, churches and orgs. their own, customized HirePatriots website so that they can get it started in their locale.
I’m retired and/or don’t own a business, what can we do to help jobless vets in my hometown? Get a HirePatriots.com website for your area. For instance, it could be www.HirePatriots.com/Phoenix.
What feedback have you gotten from veterans about your site? How has it affected their lives? Please click this link: http://hirepatriots.com/news-and-blogs/entry/what-people-say-about-hirepatriots-job-program
I have written a second book: The Patriotic Business Plan: Strategies for Sensational Success. It come out in late September by Motivational Press. It goes into great detail about how to get HirePatriots started in your area. It was written for businesses that want to use this as a community program.