Veteran John Storey – Be Proactive and Value Your Strong Work Ethic

Ryder System, Inc.  |  Leadership, Time Management, and Respect  | 

Published in the July/August 2013 issue of print Search & Employ®  | 

John Storey spent four years in the Marine Corps, serving two tours overseas and separating as a corporal. He was a 3522 Diesel Mechanic, maintaining a fleet of armored vehicles to ensure combat readiness. He served in the Combat Logistics Regiments at Camp Kinser on Okinawa and at Camp Pendleton, California.

He is now a Diesel Technician III at Ryder System, Inc. He is responsible for maintaining a fleet of vehicles at a Ryder location in Baton Rouge. He started working for the company in February 2012. Last year, Storey was featured in the “Ryder in the Military” section of the company’s internal magazine Ryder People. Storey’s supervisor, John Webb, said, “I wish we had 10 more like him. He has been an excellent addition to our team.”

Storey credits the work ethic that was instilled in him while in the Marine Corps for helping get the position at Ryder. “Being proactive and having a strong work ethic during my time in the military are what helped me get my job at Ryder,” he said. “Three months before leaving the military, I started looking for jobs, and just one week after leaving, I was employed by Ryder. I got my job by reaching out to a Ryder recruiter.”

He also credits getting started early with helping him find a job right after leaving the military – and he believes all servicemembers should do the same. “I would advise them to start their job search three to six months prior to leaving the military and most importantly, to be career-minded vs. waiting until the last minute and settling for a low-end job,” he said. “Being proactive and really getting a head start is what gets your foot in the door.”

Much of what Storey learned in the military has helped him succeed at Ryder. “Leadership, time management, and respect are some of the main characteristics that continue to help me succeed on the job,” he said. “In the military, it’s crucial that you know the importance of being efficient and of being a leader who respects his peers and superiors. I’ve definitely found that all of these characteristics have carried over into my day-to-day activities at Ryder.”

Storey believes there are many reasons that Ryder is a good fit for veterans. “Ryder is highly structured, well maintained, and well organized,” he said. “It’s a friendly environment, where the senior employees are respectful and really go out of their way to help out. There’s always room for opportunity within the company and the ability to move up the chain, as long as you work hard. The amount of training that Ryder offers their employees is off the charts, whether it’s on the job, in a classroom, or online.”

Storey said that, when looking for civilian jobs, veterans should set themselves apart. “I would tell veterans and/or those with military experience to focus on their resume and to list the skills and traits that they obtained in the military,” he said. “Fine-tuning your resume and highlighting what makes you stand out as current or former military person help set you apart.”

Also, be patient and make the right choice. “Do not go with the first opportunity that comes your way,” said Story. “There are so many different companies offering different things. The key is to find the perfect fit for you and one that you can see yourself in long-term.”

About the Author

This article was written by Jay Myers