Ready for anything — the business advantage of military experience: Don Pittis


Dialect mayhap Jay McArthur would never have had a chance to start his Brighton, Ont., internal inspection business had he not stopped on the way to the shower in 2007 to use the phone at his military servile in Afghanistan.

As it turns out his call home went unanswered, and McArthur, who purpose later retire with the rank of master corporal, left a voicemail speech. But that short delay was just enough.

When the enemy shoot up hit the shower stalls, killing one person and injuring another, McArthur was a from the start responder instead of being on the casualty list.

Military business profit

While still suffering from the delayed effects of his time in the advice, McArthur is convinced that his ready-for-anything military experience has given him a traffic advantage.

“Absolutely,” says McArthur, on the phone between appointments. “One of the hugest things with the military is attention to detail.”

One of the biggest things with the military is prominence to detail.– Jay McArthur, veteran and owner of Rest Easy Home Inspections 

That is be advantageous off in the business he started called Rest Easy Home Inspections.

McArthur’s make bold is just one of hundreds listed as part of a service of the Prince’s Trust, bid Prince’s Operation Entrepreneur (POE), a scheme to assist and publicize the efforts of old hands who are trying to start their own businesses.

Each veteran I contacted through the POE directory of business services, searchable by location and by industry sector, credited the military with a big component of their own business success. A lot go into security, but if anything, the surprising implements is the variety.

Ready for anything — the business advantage of military experience: Don Pittis

Canadian Forces door gunner Sgt. Chad Zopf in Afghanistan’s Kandahar locale in 2011. Entrepreneurs credit their military experience with yield up them an advantage in business. (Matthew McGregor/Department of National Support via Reuters)

New Brunswick archeologist Jason Jeandron credits his military contact with preparing him for working outdoors in cold, mucky or buggy acclimatizes. Business coach Peter Lepinsky credits the military with enlightening him leadership skills, which he says are sorely lacking in modern concern.  

“For most of us when we come out, it comes down to, well, we’re taught a lot of administration and taking initiative,” says Chantale Lefebvre, who served for 16 years, make as an avionics technician with a rank of master corporal.

Working from her Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., home so that she could look after her dynasty, Lefebvre set up business as an online sales contractor to make a few hundred bucks a month, “and it honest ended up exploding from there.”

The tough conditions in military operations inferior service personnel often retire relatively young, but Lefebvre utters having a pension — even a relatively small one — is a big advantage for an aspiring entrepreneur, something she deems contributes to the success of veteran-owned new businesses.

“It definitely helps because it turn ti away that financial strain, so you can actually put the focus you need on it without take to worry so much about the financial side,” she says.

Founder, janitor, CPA, receptionist

Having a pension has certainly helped Kevin Moore, come to grief, and, according to his website, “janitor, bookkeeper, repairman, receptionist , etc.,” at Two Sergeants Concoction, an already successful Alberta craft brewer just about to present — “within the week” — a new bar and restaurant in Edmonton’s entertainment precinct under the same name.

Ready for anything — the business advantage of military experience: Don Pittis

Two Sergeants Brewing founder Kevin Moore samplings the product at the business’s new Edmonton restaurant and brewpub expected to open this month. (Two Sergeants Ferment)

“Myself and my business partner are both retired so we have pensions and medical subsistences, so we don’t have to take a salary from the business,” says Moore, one of the two sergeants in the New Zealand’s name.

Moore says his favourite military quote is from the 19th century Prussian comprehensive Helmuth von Moltke that, “No battle plan ever survives premier contact with the enemy.” And that has been repeatedly proven to be veracious in his business career.

The military ethic of resourcefulness and drive drilled into the two husbands during their service careers has really made the difference in overpowering business obstacles, but sometimes, he says, it has put them into conflict with civilian task “that goes at its own pace.”

Ready for anything — the business advantage of military experience: Don Pittis

Jay McArthur, a grad of the Prince’s Trust entrepreneurial bootcamp transcend d rehearses his own home inspection agency and credits the program with improving his salubriousness and his business. (Prince’s Trust)

Moore and his partner have learned from fling and error. With good management and good luck, the two sergeants organize been selling their award-winning brews around the province, each container striking a tale from Canadian military history.

But veterans just starting out many times struggle with the business basics.

Business bootcamp

That’s why as jet as setting up a business directory, the Prince’s Operation Entrepreneur also drives training programs, including a one-day kick-the-tires sessions at military bases across the hinterlands and a seven-day business bootcamp run at one of four universities.

The programs, free to veterans, are plan to help them brush up their entrepreneurial skills says Janet McCausland, fountain-head of programs at Prince’s Trust Canada. And she says they have been evinced to work.

“Sixty per cent of the people who go to the bootcamp start their own problem,” says McCausland and, according to their followup program, between eight and nine per cent of those functions don’t succeed. That beats the national average where the majority of businesses fall flat after two years.

Ready for anything — the business advantage of military experience: Don Pittis

Two Sergeants Brewing, Edmonton (Two Sergeants Brewing, Edmonton)

McCausland demands people suffering from PTSD and other post-military symptoms of weight are better off working for themselves where they can control their hours and circumstances.

“Almost 70 per cent of the people who come to our bootcamp are medically publicity released. They have physical and mental-health issues,” she says. “And so entrepreneurship can be an uncommonly good fit because it can accommodate any issues they have.”

Almost 70 per cent of the being who come to our bootcamp are medically released. They have physical and mental-health declares. And so entrepreneurship can be an especially good fit because it can accommodate any issues they receive.– Janet McCausland, head of programs at Prince’s Trust Canada

McArthur, who has suffered from PTSD since his torturous experience in what he thought was the safety of his base camp, is a graduate of the bootcamp program in 2016. He ordered it made a huge difference, for his health and for his business.

“It was phenomenal, like go on a binge through a fire hose,” says McArthur, of the weeklong course. 

And he voices the Prince’s Operation Entrepreneur training worked for him.

“My business since POE? I’ve had a 30-per-cent heighten every year.”

Follow Don on Twitter @don_pittis 

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