en·core – pronounced “ON”-CORE, is a repeated or additional performance of an item at the end of a concert, as called for by an audience. You know the drill: you go to hear your favorite band and you’ve already danced, yelled, and otherwise lip-synched to all the songs as you bopped your head up & down and from side to side. Maybe some of you broke out lighters or maybe even cellphones mimicking that movement with your arm swaying to the music.


Then it hits you. The band didn’t play that signature tune that everybody knows!


Why? You’ve been set up!


I read online that the idea of an Encore means different things to different Musicians. Each has a unique opinion of approach to an encore:


Apparently, Reggae sensation Bob Marley & The Wailers split their concerts into 2. During a brief intermission, the band would tune their instruments and take a short break as the fans cheered on. Once they began their second portion of the concert, they ended up playing for about an additional hour plus any encore performance songs based on the typical huge response they received by the crowd.


Elvis Presley took a very different approach to the encore. His Manager Colonel Tom Parker (whose real name is Andreas Cornelis ("Dries") van Kuijk) believed Elvis should perform his show, and then leave the audience wanting more. I read that “Elvis has left the building” was used when he was not the headliner act and “Thank You and Good Night” was Elvis’ indication that as headliner, his show was over, with no encore.


Finally, Jimmy Buffett, known to do 2 encores, performs one with his band and then the other by himself, solo. He leaves his fans with a lesser-known song at the end.


And, for all you rock fans, the bands Boston and The Cure have been known to play 4-5 encores!


So, what does this have to do with GOING CIVILIAN?


Nearly everything you do in the Military-to-Civilian career transition process should result in an encore!


For example:


  • Your résumé should give the intended audience what they want, but leave them wanting more – as in we want to talk to you more, we want to get to know you more, we want to learn how you can help our company make more and earn more.


  • That first phone call you get after you submit your résumé is another form of an encore. Multiple callbacks for submitted résumés equal multiple encores. If you’re getting callbacks, your well-crafted résumé must be part of the reason.


  • In an interview setting, that phone call you get for a second, third, and/or final interview means the audience (the Employer) wants more of you. Be ready!


  • Any special project, presentation, demonstration, test, or other task a prospective Employer gives you is in some ways equivalent to an encore. They evidently liked what they saw in the beginning and now they want to experience more of you! Knock the ball out of the park!



So, if you find yourself with no encore, maybe it’s time to start rehearsing. Maybe it’s time to start honing your interviewing skills. Maybe it is time to rethink your résumé. Maybe it is time to practice the things you’ve been taking for granted or otherwise ignoring.


Think about it.


My hope for you is that you’ll leave your prospective Employers wanting more! Go and get that encore!


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