Our Podcast

BY Brock Dudley

Foot in The Door-THEN Navigate your Career (E192)

Welcome back!

In this episode, we’re going to talk about why it’s important to get your foot in the door—THEN navigate your career. You’ll meet three Cameron-Brooks alumni who have successfully made the transition to the business world, all have been promoted and navigated their careers wisely. Two of them happen to be married!

We were fortunate enough to have Chazz Hoskins, along with Luke and Marquette Leveque share their experiences with us. This episode was originally intended for them to share their experience in the Engineering Management Career Field. In this episode, Joel and the Panel discuss the misperceptions of Engineering Management, explain what Engineering Management is along with the competencies required to be successful, describe how diversified the work is, and provide the listeners with some sample industries.

However, we felt our alumni were great examples of former junior military officers who made decisions early on in their careers that helped them establish a track record of success, build a skillset, and then make decisions that pivoted closer towards their ideal personal and professional goals.

Chazz made the transition from the Air Force as a Developmental Engineer and launched his career with Lam Research as a Manufacturing Engineer in Silicon Valley. Lam Research makes advanced microchips that are in many familiar products we use every day such as our mobile phones, computing devices, entertainment systems, and even smart cars! He and his wife then decided it was time to move back to Ohio. Chazz navigated his career and now works with Silflex, a division of Lam Research, they’ve bought a home and are living in their dream location. Chris built a skillset and navigated to the ideal location!

Marquette and Luke Leveque were classmates at the Naval Academy, Navy Nuclear Submarine Officers, came through the Cameron-Brooks program in 2018 and attended the April 2018 Career Conference. TOGETHER, they launched their careers at Boston Scientific, a leading medical device company that makes innovative solutions and medical devices to help improve the health of patients around the world.

Marquette began her career in a Process Development Manager role where she led a team of engineers to successfully implement large-scale manufacturing processes for new biopharmaceutical products. She then wanted to be closer to the customer and is now in a marketing role with Boston Scientific. Luke launched his career as an Operations Project Manager where he led a cross-functional team moving new products out of the research and design stage into the manufacturing stage, and ultimately into commercial use. Luke has now shifted into a marketing role on the commercial side of the business leading their laser therapies team. Luke and Marquette navigated their career to the desired roles!

Career Management

When I meet with junior military officers to discuss their career goals, I ask a lot of questions to get to know them. One of those questions I ask is, “Why are you leaving the military?”. I often get the answer, “For more career control”. Makes sense! In the military, most decisions are made for you. You haven’t necessarily had to make decisions as it pertains to “Career Management”. Your detailer, branch manager, or assignment officer makes it for you. It’s also a specific career path within your MOS. If you deviate from it, you may not be selected for command or make the next rank and will be forced to make the transition out.

For example, you are told when to move, when it is time for a new assignment, which organization, or unit you will join, etc. While this can make life hard for military officers, it does free them from the responsibility of “Career Management”. To some, that may be ideal. For some, it’s not.

In the business world, there are no scholarship contracts, assignments officers, early outs, PCS commitments, ADSOs, or mandatory job changes. Regardless of your company, you are free to switch careers, stay where you are, entertain other opportunities, apply for an open position, or take broadening assignments to be exposed to other aspects of the business. In Corporate America, you are truly at the helm of your career. This a freedom, but it comes with responsibility and can be a double-edged sword.

Build a Skillset

We’ve studied JMO transitions for a long time. We can say that a successful transition starts with getting off active duty and ends with a strong JMO transitioning from being a leader in the service TO being a leader in business and part of a company’s succession planning process, just like our alumni are doing in this episode. Before you do that, you have to get your foot in the door! They’ve built a skillset, built trust within their organizations, and have pivoted to the ideal!

Cameron-Brooks has been helping military officers move from the military to corporate America for over half a century. We view ourselves as a guide and experts in helping military officers conduct a broad and enriching career search. Even if you aren’t sure, give me a call or send me an email. I’d like to help you explore this path to see if it’s right for you. Even if it’s not, a conversation can help you define your goals and build a plan.

Best of success in your business career! Remember, you’ve got to get in the game to start playing. That’s why it’s important to keep in mind…foot in the door-THEN navigate your Career.


bdudley@cameron-brooks.com // 210-874-1495


Thank you for listening to the Cameron-Brooks podcast! As you consider your potential transition from the military to the business world, if you’d like to talk about your marketability or how Cameron-Brooks can guide you to launching your career, please contact us directly. Schedule a call here. 

Cameron-Brooks has a 50-year track record of guiding military officers to create a step-by-step plan to learn about their options, connect their military experiences directly to opportunities in corporate America, craft a resume that will stand out to hiring managers, and ultimately launch a successful business career.