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BY Hope Nunnelley

Three Things You Can Do TODAY to Help Prepare for Your Transition

“There’s no better time to plant a tree than today.” I was recently chatting with a military officer who wanted to get ahead of his transition preparation. With three years out from a potential separation date, I was impressed with his desire to actively seek out resources and educate

himself. The tree metaphor was one of the first things he said in our conversation, and it couldn’t be more accurate. The best time to start planning for a successful transition is now. The good news? There are three things you can do TODAY to help prepare you for the transition. 

Three Things
  1. Complete a self-reflection and map out your career goals. Ask yourself these questions:
    • What are your career goals for the next 3-5 years? 
    • What job in the military was your favorite? Least favorite? 
    • What sort of career fields sound interesting to you? 
    • How will YOU define a successful transition? (If you need more of a roadmap, listen to our podcast for additional details). 
    • Consider the differences between a military transition and a career transition.
  2. Educate yourself on your options. Government, private, and education sectors could all be options on the table. But what’s the best move for your 5-year plan? Because we exclusively represent private sector options, we will be able to provide you with resources to learn more about business.
    • Research career options. We have a webinar on this exact subject and exactly how your military background could translate into opportunities.
    • Read. Read business books, business journals, business blogs, etc. We’d recommend Good to Great by Jim Collins to get started! Many officers in our program also subscribe to The Wall Street Journal to keep up on current events. Follow business thought leaders on LinkedIn and other social media platforms (NOTE: create a LinkedIn account).
    • Listen. There are a number of podcasts out there dedicated to educating their audiences on business leadership. A few of my favorites include HBR Ideacast, How I Built This, and The Cameron-Brooks podcast.
  3. Have a conversation. One of the easiest ways to receive personalized feedback specific to your situation is to hop on the phone. Make a goal to set up THREE informational interviews to learn more about your options/career field interests/transition experiences. Examples include:
    • A buddy/colleague who already made the transition. Ask about their transition experience, which avenues they utilized and what they’re doing now.
    • A business leader you’ve connected with on LinkedIn. Perhaps you have a mutual connection/friend who could make an introduction.
    • A Cameron-Brooks team member. Our mission is to help JMOs learn more about their options and make a smooth and successful transition. We speak with military officers day in and day out about transition strategies and make recommendations based on their personal goals. Fill out a contact form or call us directly at 210-874-1500.


These are three things you can do today to help prepare for a successful transition. Even if you’re on the fence about separating, I think educating yourself on different options is the best way to feel confident when making career decisions. No better time to plant a tree than now.


To learn more about career and transition strategies, check out our (free!) transition guide on the subject. Interested in exploring your options with Cameron-Brooks?  Curious about how to make a successful transition? Check out our website, YouTube Channel and follow us on LinkedIn