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#7: Handling Uncertainty When Transitioning from a Military Career with Dave Harden

Dave Harden, a retired Air Force Colonel, shares two essential questions to ask when you’re in the midst of uncertainty.


Dave Harden is a retired Air Force Colonel. He completed 26 years on reserve and active duty and since then has been in numerous influential roles and businesses as a leader. Today he is the CEO and founder of The Outpost, a company that helps technology companies win government contracts and connect them with commercial opportunities. In this episode, he talks about removing fear to ask for help so you accelerate your success.

Episode Highlights

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02:15: Dave describes his varied military career and reserve life.

04:49: Feeling like he could make a bigger impact outside military life than inside and the decisions that led to his post-military career.

06:25: Dave gives advice on how to handle interests you have while still in a military career.

08:54: How to handle ambiguity that comes after making a decision to leave military life.

12:09: Having a growth mindset requires vulnerability that military personnel need to embrace in order to succeed in a non-military career.

13:50: Living a “Do good. Make money.” life.

15:24: Two questions that can help you have a successful career.

15:50: Dave’s advice on steps to take as you consider and prepare for a post-military career.

18:50: Importance of taking time to take care of yourself and managing expectations with your family as situations change.

21:33: Gene’s business tip: Two-fold: 1. Invest in a professional to help you with your financial investments; and 2. Stop doing your own taxes.

Your Move

Show Resources: If you’ve been listening to the Make Your Move podcast, but haven’t read the book Make Your Move: Charting Your Post-Military Career, you’re missing out on half the story. The book is intended to share my experience from transitioning from military life to corporate life that anybody can adapt to their own situation. Get the book at genemoran.com/make-your-move/.

Connect with Gene on LinkedIn for more useful tips and proven strategies to maximize your post-military career success.

Connect with Dave Harden on LinkedIn

Coming Up On Episode 8: In the next episode, Gene talks with former Navy Combat Aviator, Loree Draude, who has over 30 years of experience leading high performance teams, including in the U.S. Navy, Google and Facebook.

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Gene Moran

Gene spent nearly 25 years in uniform, serving in six ships and more than ten duty stations, and visiting over 50 countries serving as a US Navy Surface Warfare Officer and retiring as a Captain. In corporate, he led legislative affairs for a large international defense company from the Washington, DC office. In doing so, Gene gained a detailed understanding of the defense industrial base and supply chains of myriad platforms, systems and capabilities. Then in 2013, he took the leap to start his own business, Capitol Integration. Since then Gene has helped scores of companies improve their federal positions.

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