A career transition is a deeply personal experience with different challenges, situations, goals and reactions to stress. Ultimately your resume is an accumulation of personal decisions made throughout your career.

Everyone develops their own goals and faces different challenges. The moment you accept this and resolve to put in the necessary work…is the moment you start down the path to success.

Didn’t get the right degree or professional certification? That was a decision you made. Go change it.

Changed jobs too often and are looked at as a “job hopper?” You made those decisions to move. Keep this in mind when making the decision to look for a new job at the first challenge or difficulty.

Worked 14-hour days until the day you needed to focus on your career development or transition? YOU made the decision to work up to the last minute, not seeking personal or professional growth, likely as a defense mechanism to not deal with your career transition or face uncertainty.

Keep in mind the worst time to network is when you NEED to network. Desperation often comes across in your communication with those you don’t know well.


1.Build a network of mentors (for Veterans make sure they are outside of the military). Work with them to determine your WHAT and WHERE

2.Develop a plan

3.Check with mentors to ensure the plan is realistic. You are just “spinning wheels” when you choose a path that you are ultimately not qualified in the eyes of potential employers (regardless of what you think).

4.Grow your brand or professional identity through LinkedIn. Make sure a quick glance of your profile reflects your professional identity, that you have a network that supports those goals and you post/share content that demonstrates your knowledge.

Put in the work to OWN YOUR CAREER TRANSITION and adjust as necessary. There are going to be obstacles, how you react to and overcome them is completely up to you – and will ultimately determine your success.


  • Michael Quinn

    2018 LinkedIn Top Voice for Management & Workplace

      Army Sergeant Major (Ret), Senior Manager at EY, 2018 LinkedIn Top Voice for Management & Workplace and CEO of HireMilitary – Michael is an expert on the military to civilian career transition and helps people around the world navigate LinkedIn, personal branding, networking, communication, social media and team building.