Happy Veterans Day
by Cody Dumont
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In Oct 1998, I stood in the desert sands of Twentynine Palms, Ca with a new document in hand. That document was my DD214, which is basically a service member's discharge papers. After serving 8 years in the Marines, I was about to embark on the next adventure in my life. I remember thinking many things, one of which was “I will never shave again!” The other question I asked myself was, “Now what do I do?” Serving in immediate danger zones or combat zones is stressful, but let me tell you getting out of the military feels very similar.
After getting out, I found that my transition was successful because of my family, friends and veteran organizations like the Marine Corps League. As I began looking for work, I realized some of my skills from the military would transition easily. In my first enlistment, I was an 0311 Rifleman, and in my second enlistment, a 2821 Computer Technician. Both Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) helped me more than I realized at the time, now that I look back. In the infantry, we worked in small 4 - 12 man units. As a team leader, I learned how to lead and mentor my fellow Marines. Later, as Computer Tech, I learned how to work on the computers, copiers, and other stuff. Today I work for a great company that was founded by a veteran. Ron Gula is a veteran of the United States Air Force. The culture at Tenable mirrors some of the best aspects of military life. For example, we often work in small teams and the collaboration of working together is great.
I am the manager of a small team that creates the dashboards and reports for Tenable.io and SecurityCenter. Within that team, I have two veterans: Josef Weiss and Steve Tilson. We run the team in a pretty easy-going fashion that resembles a well-organized Fire Team. A Fire Team is the smallest unit in the Marine Infantry. The members become really close and learn to anticipate each other's needs and thoughts. We listen to each other and support each other during the completion of our mission. All of this is possible because of the esprit de corps that is encouraged and sponsored by the leadership at Tenable. Many of our VPs and Directors are veterans and they value the experience and motivation that veterans bring to the table.
My advice to all service members looking to transition to civilian life is to first and foremost rebuild the bonds with your family and friends. Second, join a veterans organization. Every member has completed the same transition on which you are embarking. The last recommendation is to look for organizations like Tenable that look for veterans and embrace their sense of loyalty to our country and are dedicated to producing superior products in the market place. I also asked my team of vets to share some of their advice. If you are able to do a few of these recommendations, I promise you will find the long lasting friendships, respect, and sense of belonging as you once felt during your time in the service.
Advice from Josef Weiss: Advancement in the military is very structured and linear. In the military, going outside your chain of command is considered improper or taboo. In the civilian world things are not so regimented. Networking is the key to success. Take control of your career by identifying what you want to do. Identify methods to broaden your skills, such as seeking out individuals and groups that can help. If you feel overwhelmed or disoriented in the process, ask questions. Never be afraid to discuss things with your supervisors and managers, especially your peers.
From one veteran to another, thank you for serving and protecting our nation, and please consider Tenable for any career opportunities.