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BY petevanepps

Episode 144 – Three Keys to Accelerating Your Business Career

Welcome back! I am glad to introduce you to Steven Sandoval. Steven is a former USMC Aircraft Maintenance Officer (F-18 Hornet) who launched his business career in 2018 as a Manager of Customer Service and Support at Textron Systems, a division of Textron. An interesting aspect of this episode is we recorded it just after he received and promotion to a Director-level position and was back at the Career Conference interviewing JMOs to backfill his position!

Steven makes some great points about his decision-making process early in his business career that you can use and look forward to in your own journey.  Here are three key takeaways:

Location Preference: Steven was just promoted to a Director position and he is relocating his family from Virginia to Boston. He admitted that he never would have even considered a position in Boston at his Career Conference in 2018. Why the change? His response was profound. He said, “Your perception changes so much when you are in control over it (location.) It is so different when you are the one who gets to decide to go or not.” What’s interesting is he turned down three other promotion opportunities in different locations because they weren’t the right fit; not because of location but because of fit!  From the Career Conference, he said he said he wished he would have held location a bit more loosely because once he made the move from the USMC, he realized he has so much more control over things like where he lives.

Choosing a Company: I asked Stephen why he ultimately chose Textron Systems. He responded by saying while the role would definitely capitalize on his experience as an Aircraft Maintenance Officer, the number one reason he chose Textron Systems was his hiring manager, Julie Miller. Julie is a former Army Intelligence officer and Cameron-Brooks alumnus that transitioned to Textron in 2013.  As matter of fact, she was a guest speaker on our 6th podcast episode back in August 2016 (Spotify and Apple)! Steven said that though Julie had a different military background, she really understood his skillset and understood how that would translate for the company. This point is crucial because it is sometimes difficult to embrace the intangible nature of the value of knowing who your boss will be. So much of the career search comes down to the relationships and interaction with your boss and the team to evaluate and chose the best option.

Career Trajectory: Steven has been very successful at Textron Systems. As I mentioned earlier, he considered three other potential promotions before deciding on his current role. What is interesting is the way he was selected for the role because it was completely unplanned and unexpected! He said he volunteered to be on a prototype project team. He described it as grueling and a team that not many people wanted to be on. He said it took a miracle, but the team Steven delivered the product ahead of schedule. A senior lead approached him, told him he’d had his eye on Steven, and asked if he wanted to interview for a position on a team he was leading. What’s the takeaway? “You never know when you are being interviewed for a position in Corporate America. Keep doing what you do. Put your best foot forward and the opportunities will come. Opportunity is going to present itself and it’s never going to be gift wrapped.” 

These three things helped Steven accelerate his career success. If you are interested in learning more about Cameron-Brooks, who we are, what we do, and how we do it, call or email me directly at (210) 874-1519 or pete@cameron-brooks.com.

Pete Van Epps

Cameron-Brooks is a Military-to-Business career transition specialist that partners exclusively with Junior Military Officers to launch rewarding careers in Corporate America.

You can also check out our Transition Guide on “The 5 Most Common Mistakes JMOs Make Transitioning” for additional transition tips.

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