Avoid military speak: Advice for that job interview

If you're a veteran trying to get your first job after leaving the military, you've got to recognize that it's a whole new world out there. And the people you want to hire you, don't necessarily speak your language.

To get the gig, you’ve got to drop the military lingo and talk like a civilian. Here’s a quick guide to help navigate the conversation.

What you say What they hear What you should say
MOS Moss? Job specialty
Rifle platoon leader Rambo Team leader, squad manager
E-5 “You sank my Battleship!” Sergeant
Fatigues Tired Uniform
Dress Blues Wardrobe depression Formal uniform
National Defense Service Medal, GWOT Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon Medal of Honor You can probably just leave these out
PT PT Cruiser Exercise
Inside the wire An HBO show On a base in a war zone
IED GED? Don’t talk about bombs
Marine, Sailor, Airman Soldier Let it slide
PCS’d Pissed Relocated, tackled new challenges
Combat experience PTSD Ability to perform under pressure
Battle rattle Some kind of war noise Body armor (but leave that out, too)
Humvee That Hummer in the parking lot Truck
General (Under Honorable Conditions) Honorable discharge If this applies, you might as well leave it and benefit from the confusion


What the heck is a Ruptured Duck? To find out, click here.

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