Re: English Majors and Ex-Military (was Seeking Advice on English MA)

Subject: Re: English Majors and Ex-Military (was Seeking Advice on English MA)
From: surfer924 -at- earthlink -dot- net
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2001 7:13:23

Being both retired military (20 years in Army Intelligence) and having a Bachelor's Degree in Communications ("What?" "English." "Oh, an English major.") I was up against a double-edged sword in the hiring process. Unfortunately few people of management age have served in the armed forces and grew up watching M*A*S*H* instead. I was blessed after several unsuccessful interviews to make it past the myopic HR department and interview with a hiring manager who was an ex-Air Force officer and who recognized that the skill set possessed by a retired senior NCO would be a major asset when it came to the job of managing documentation from specs to published manuals for three product lines.

>>Most of the ex-military TWs I've run across don't fit this description at all--they've been inflexible, patronizing, prone to quantity rather than quality, overly fond of passive voice and bureaucatese, and unwilling to learn and use new technology. <<

Most of the managers I've run across who have no military experience don't know how to lead, are more concerned with tool knowledge and degrees or certificates than writing ability and technical competence, and would rather embrace the latest management fad than try something that has been proven and works.

In my current position, the only ones who seem to make it to meetings on time and consistently meet deadlines are the ones who are ex-military.


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