Ways to Include your Military Recognition During Your Job Search


Don't worry when you are not recognized, but strive to be worthy of recognition
. -Abraham Lincoln


Here’s another R-Word in our R Series that gets people excited! The word is Recognition!

Recognition in the civilian world takes many forms. The military tradition of Commander’s Coins has even trickled over to the civilian workplace! Civilian Employers have all kinds of ways to recognize a job well done.


Some ways civilian Employers recognize Employees include, but are not limited to:


• Employee of the Month honors
• Feature article in the company newsletter, magazine, or blog
• Customer Service awards as nominated by Customers
• Certificates and Awards which may or may not include a prize or a check
• Birthdays or Work Anniversary celebrations
• Time off
• Selection to attend a career-enhancing training session or meeting
• An opportunity to work with a specific department or high-level executive for a brief period of time
• An opportunity to give a presentation in an area of expertise
• Rewards for the business unit that meets a predetermined goal


The carrot always seems to be in front of today’s civilian worker in some way, shape, or form. Companies come up with many creative ways to motivate the workforce.


Ideally, your choice of workplace and type of work makes you get up in the morning excited about what lies ahead. A little recognition now and then makes it even more exciting!


If you’re in the midst of your Military-to-Civilian career transition, you may wish to locate some of those documents that highlighted any military recognition you received in the past. Any “Soldier of the Month” type honors (specific to your particular branch of service), any articles in a publication, or anything that recognized an outstanding performance at work, might be worthy of sharing with a prospective Employer during an interview.


Let’s not forget some other forms of recognition that might show your worth such as; leadership roles in organizations where you served in the capacity of President, Treasurer, Committee Chair, etc. Or, maybe you led an organization in meeting or exceeding a goal for a big project, pledge drive, donations, fund raising, or some other activity that got results!


Recognition might be awarded as an individual contributor or part of a team. If you can clearly state your role in the success and the reasons your efforts resulted in receiving such recognition, it might be well worth your time to share that story in a job interview.


Whether you currently work in the Civilian work world or you’re on your way, my hope is that you continue to strive toward excellence worthy of recognition, seen or unseen!


In what ways does your Employer recognize your efforts? What do you wish you’d see more or less of in terms of recognition?



Related stories in the Here We R series:
Leaders are Readers
Are You a Reactionary Person?
Hold That Thought!

Eric Claus

Not going to lie... my first area of work outside of the military was the most unprofessional work environment you could ever see.  It made me think twice about leaving the military, which is just weird- but anyways, I've been focused on school striving for a legitimate career in IT, and I can't wait to place myself in a position where hard work does not go unnoticed.

Community Manager
Community Manager

XXXfreebirdXX: Thank You for your post on Going Civilian! You never know what worklife outside the military is going to look like, and we often compare it to what we're used to. And, as we adapt and develop our new careers, we soon figure out a few things that can help things along. All the best in school and your new career venture!