that a younger ranking person gets in the military,”
says Mr. Hoal.
Exposure to people from around the world can
support this development process. “Military people
work with cross-functional teams from all ethnicities and different nationalities—and everyone must
work toward a common goal,” Mr. Hoal says. Experience with varied stakeholders has served him well
in his current position: He works with half a dozen
departments, from human resources to IT.
CROSSING THE LANGUAGE BARRIER
Although many project management skills are
universal, there’s a divide between military and
corporate culture—and it creates an obstacle for
veterans seeking civilian employment. Vocabulary
differences are one issue. The military says “mis-
sion”; civilians say “project.” What the military calls
“debriefing,” project managers describe as “gather-
ing lessons learned.”
“As an officer, I did project management but
didn’t necessarily use project management lan-
guage,” Mr. Johnston says.
That’s why veterans should dive into learning
the civilian language of project management, Dr.
Richardson says. “Veterans bear the burden of
articulating what they can do in language that can
be understood by civilians,” she says.
Ideally, veterans should learn that terminology
before leaving the military. Whenever there’s downtime, “have a textbook in front of you and learn the
language of project management so that you can
it takes, you
get it done.”
—Graeme Hood, Royal
London, Wilmslow, England
military get the fundamental
a project end-to-end. The