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How do you recommend transferring Continuous Improvement experience in the military to the civilian market?


Jairo Patino Fpo, AP

I am Lean Six Sigma Black Belt with a Bachelor's degree on my way out of the Marine Corps. I have done multiple improvement projects, mentored project leads and instructed yellow belt and green belt classes. How should I begin if my career aspiration is to be a Lean Six Sigma professional in the corporate world?

25 November 2018 4 replies Military to Civilian Transition



John Slater Fullerton, CA

Greetings Jairo,

Thank you for your service. Let's start a dialogue and see if we can't find something for you. I would like to suggest you review the career opportunities at Raytheon. I am an R6sigma specialist which is a Raytheon specific version of 6 sigma and all employees are required to get certified. We actually have a whole department specific to that technique. There may be other opportunities as well so if you would like to send me your resume and email address, I will forward some opportunities that seem to fit. We are very proud of our veterans at Raytheon and genuinely value their service. You will find considerable support and quite a diverse and inclusive culture. Keep in touch and I will do all I can to help you out..

29 November 2018 Helpful answer


cathy salerno Skillman, NJ

Hi Jairo,
First off, thank you so much for your service! You've detailed experience that is highly valued in any manufacturing environment so Supply Chain or Operations roles might be a great area to start your search. Also, IT/Systems roles often look for six sigma experts. I agree with Jerry's suggestions to translate your experience into results. I'd also suggest to highlight how your Leadership characteristics moved programs forward -- your ability to Connect, Shape, and Deliver with specific examples. In my job, we've worked with consultants from firms like AT Kearney -- your background seems like a natural fit for a firm like ATK. And in my opinion, I like your profile photo. It clearly shows your determination and contribution to our country!

26 November 2018 Helpful answer


Jerry Welsh Middleville, MI

Jairo, you answered your own question. I would venture to say, 90% of Americans would not connect Lean Six Sigma and Marines-so disconnect and tell them how you used your Black Belt with quantifiable results from your ratings, with #$% and take out military jargon.
Research continuous quality improvement as a career, and gather the most up to date civilian keywords. Use Google news, search for career related articles, see what civilians use for for descriptions of what you do, then use the civilian terms. I noticed you have a degree in IT technology, any plan on using that? Keep in mind that 90% of recruiters use LinkedIn. Your TAG line is good, may not need the BSTM, I would stress your civilian keywords in your Black Belt use. Take your current head shot and clean up background, make is a soft color background, more like a professional picture-also do not forget to smile. I am enclosing and article on your LI profile, you also get LinkedIn premium free for a year. Depending upon when you get out, you do not hit the market too soon, you will get offers you cannot accept. I would fill the top of your profile with civilian terms about 60 -90 days out. Your experience is not as important where as some key accomplishment. Get recommendations that speak from your LSSBB accomplishments-that is where you want to go, maybe from an officer you trained his or her team etc. Good luck, God Bless for your sacrifices.

26 November 2018 Helpful answer


Victoria Okotie Houston, TX

I would recommend getting trained with a ScrumMaster Certification or in other Agile Methods (Kanban, XP). You could check out

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