The army provides its members with extensive training in a range of complex, critical and highly transferable skills, but is an often misunderstood and underappreciated section of the workforce.
Harry Renshaw is a former Captain in the British army, who left the military in 2012 to pursue a career in oil and gas, and was recently placed by Webber Chase in a new role as a Commodities Trader with EP Resources in Switzerland.
We spoke to Harry about his experience and advice he has for those following in his footsteps.
How would you sum up your experience in transitioning from the army?
There are very few people who find the experience easy and I was no exception. One thing that helped a huge amount was realising what an enormous network there was out there, and how willing people were to help once I’d been in touch and asked for advice.
How did you decide what to do next?
I’d studied Geology as an undergraduate and loved it, and I had plenty of friends who’d followed it into various natural resource industries. I found the global nature of the industry and its relationship to geopolitics interesting, along with the similarities to the military that I was already familiar with.
How has your military career prepared you for the corporate world?
The skills and attributes we develop in the military can be transferred to virtually every civilian working environment that I’ve encountered so far. Furthermore, experiences gained in the miliatry often have an element of the absurd that you wouldn't find in the office environment or education, and they can be very formative and valuable. \
What advice would you give to veterans entering the workforce today?
You can’t start thinking about it too soon. Chat to as many people as you can – old school/university friends, ex-military contacts who will have done it and almost certainly love to help, and any other people that you’re able to get in touch with within industries that you think might be able to help. Speak, of course, to recruitment companies that specialise in placing people in different roles. You’ll be amazed by the opportunities that pop up once you start speaking to enough people. Read books about and research the industries and roles that you think you might enjoy, and consider what additional qualifications might help.
If you have a military background and are seeking the next step in your career, please get in touch at email@example.com.