Eric “Doc” Wright: A Veteran Helping Transitioning Veterans
Having struggled as a military servant turned civilian, Eric Wright shares his experience that prompted him in helping transitioning veterans.
Eric Wright served as a Hull Maintenance Technician and as an E-5 Petty Officer Second Class in the US Navy for almost five years.
He also had over 20 years of experience in the commercial and federal marketplace serving as a salesman, project manager, government accountant, project officer, and a professor.
Wright also earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, an MBA with Commerce as a field of study, a doctorate degree in Business Administration, and a master’s degree in Project Management.
As part of his vision to help military veterans in transitioning into the civilian lifestyle, he founded Vets2PM, a professional training and coaching company.
He also co-founded the Veteran Project Manager Mentor Alliance, an organization aimed at helping veterans, service members, and military spouses about project management.
Wright is also serving in different associations for veteran-owned businesses, a contributing author of the Amazon #1 Best Seller Game Changers, a keynote speaker, and a certified business coach in RSM Federal, a federal consulting and business-acceleration strategy firm.
Due to his efforts in helping other people like him, Wright was able to help thousands of military veterans achieve meaningful and lucrative post-service careers. Vets2PM also earned the 2019 Department of Labor Gold Award Winner for its veteran hiring initiatives!
MISSION IN HELPING TRANSITIONING VETERANS
The main problem that transitioning veterans have is coping up with the new lifestyle.
In the military, you are in an environment where people know you and your background like you’re brothers and sisters. However, when you go out and work as a veteran, your experience is quite different.
“That really exacerbates that whole transition is. I not only have to learn everything that civilians know but I also have to recreate now my own sense of purpose, my own sense of meaning, my own sense of mission, my own sense, because my own identity, because nobody around me cares, right? They’re all judged on individual performance. Nobody cares about me or how I do or what I do.”
This is why Wright built Vets2PM. He wants to help transitioning veterans achieve meaningful and lucrative careers. And with this, they follow a four step process.
The first step is inspiration. They inspire the veterans by helping them translate what they previously do in the military into what they will do in their new lifestyle, regardless of what it is.
Then, they train them to get the necessary credentials of the industry that they want to pursue. With this, Wright’s team query different companies on what they need and they shape their training for that requirement.
The third step is they prepare them with everything they need. They need to learn how to use various resources and how to determine their values.
“We give them internal workshops to develop interview skills, like everything they need to get prepared or get ready to go to that civilian job interview.”
Lastly, they prepare these veterans for life. They can lather, rinse, and repeat the process if they want to pursue another career. And with that, Wright’s team is more than willing to help them.
“The day you go from soldier, sailor, airman, Marine to civilian. Bang! Dude, an abrupt halt, right? Like dead stop, 40 mile an hour, zero mile an hour into a wall, right? You were admiral, whatever on Friday; now your Mike on Monday.”
SYMPTOMS OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT TALENT SHORTAGE
Another solution that Wright provides is recognizing workforce shortage in a company and he highlighted different symptoms that you need to check.
“Here’s what I tell business owners and executives when I talk to them. I know that you have the illness of a project management talent shortage right now. You’re sick. You just don’t know it.”
The first symptom is internal cannibalization wherein you’re cannibalizing your staff and putting them in another position in your company.
“Let’s say you’re an accountant and you get put on an accounts payable system implementation project, and you guys crush it. Well, if I saw Eric doing good stuff and that project was a success, guess what? Eric’s no longer an accountant. Eric’s project manager running accounting projects. That’s called internal cannibalization. You’re cannibalizing your staff. So now you’re down a really good accountant because you just made a project manager.”
The second symptom is you’re poaching for talents from different places. With this, you’re also doing other things to keep your business in place like crossing down, signing bonuses, increasing salaries, and others.
Then, the third symptom is overworking your employees. Consider that you still have customers or clients waiting for your deliverables and in order to keep your business in schedule, you ask your employees to do overtime.
“How many of you have project managers working on more than three projects? Raise your hand. There’s your third symptom. Now you’re overworking those you do have. Now you’re going to burn him out, brother. Now you’re compounding your problem. Okay? Those three things are bad enough as it is on its own.”
Most companies that Wright worked with have more than one of these symptoms. However, he may be able to help you by giving a study plan or coaching calls but most of the work should be done by yourself.
“You have to put the time in to develop the skills, knowledge, and abilities to test in the target credentials that we set out for you… I mean dude, we’ve done all the math for you. All you gotta do is show up and do the work.”
If you want to watch the full video of the interview with Eric Wright as he shares his experience that prompted him in helping transitioning veterans, then be sure to click the links below:
050: Veterans Helping Veterans with Eric “Doc” Wright, Founder of Vets2PM