1: VETERANS ARE ENTREPRENEURIAL
Academic research focused on the attributes characteristic of successful innovators and entrepreneurs highlights that high-performing entrepreneurs have in common strong self-efficacy, a high need for achievement, are comfortable with autonomy and uncertainty, and make effective decisions in the face of dynamic environments. Across multiple studies, research illustrates that these same attributes are generally characteristic of military service members and veterans. For example, research focused on the current all-volunteer force suggests that those who are drawn to military service are individuals with a high need for achievement (selfselection). Further, military training and socialization processes have been demonstrated to instill high levels of self-efficacy, trust, and a strong sense/comfort with autonomy and dynamic decision-making processes. These attributes, as they are linked to entrepreneurship and an entrepreneurial mindset among military veterans, have been consistently demonstrated in practice. According to multiple studies commissioned by the U.S. Small Business Administration and others, military veterans are twice more likely than non-veterans to pursue business ownership after leaving service, and the five-year success rate of ventures owned by veterans is significantly higher than the national average.
2: VETERANS ASSUME HIGH LEVELS OF TRUST
The ability to trust co-workers and superiors has been consistently highlighted in organizational behavior literature as a significant predictor of high-performing teams, organizational cohesion and morale, and effective governance systems. Research studies focused on both military personnel and veterans indicate that the military service experience engenders a strong propensity toward an inherent trust and faith in co-workers, and also a strong propensity toward trust in organizational leadership. In turn, the academic literature broadly supports the finding that organizations where trust between co-workers–and between employees and leadership–is strong, organizational performance is enhanced.
3: VETERANS ARE ADEPT AT SKILLS TRANSFER ACROSS CONTEXTS/TASKS
The ability to recognize and act on opportunities to transfer skills learned in a specific context, to a disparate context, represents a valuable organizational resource. Several studies focused on skills transfer have highlighted that military service members and veterans are particularly skilled in this ability. Research has attributed this finding to the fact that military training most often includes contingency and scenario-based pedagogy, and as a result service members and veterans develop cognitive heuristics that readily facilitate knowledge/skills transfer between disparate tasks and situations.
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