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NextGen MilSpouse is going beyond traditional career tips and tricks for military spouses! We are sharing the real stories of working military spouses (just like you!) and their professional success stories on Wednesdays.
Name: Jennifer Roett
Years as a military spouse: 3
Tell us your job title/profession:
Human resources business partner for General Electric Aviation
Is this full-time, part-time, hourly, contract or freelance work?
How long have you been working in this career field?
Do you work in an office, telecommute from home (or Starbucks), or a little bit of both?
All of the above!
How did you get this position? Was it a resume, referral, job fair? Spill your magic.
When my then boyfriend, now husband, commissioned, I decided to stay in college for another year and get a masters. I was hired directly off campus on to the HR leadership program for GE. I moved 3 times in 2 years while my husband went to IOBC, Ranger school and his first 12-month deployment.
After the deployment, GE let me partially work remote from Savannah and continue my job supporting a software start-up. When we received our next set of order to Fort Campbell, I was reassigned to a facility outside of post where I’ve worked for about 2 years.
Now we are looking toward our next move and GE has agreed to accommodate the location with a flexible role.
I’ve been very lucky with supportive managers, a flexible company and timing; but hard work and sacrifice played a large role as well.
I certainly didn’t want to spend the first 2 years in a long-distance relationship, but it has paid dividends for my long term career!
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced while trying to maintain a career while living the military lifestyle?
Besides the obvious of finding roles every 2 years…The “feast or famine” cycle during redeployment and pre-deployment. We’ve all been there, your husband had been gone for 12 months and when he returns you want to spend every second together…But you can’t, because work still has demands!
It is an extra challenge to the redeployment process. I’m blessed with a very understanding husband who understands my passion around my career!
But setting expectations at home and work has been key to getting through the process.
Tell us one thing you love about your job.
I LOVE MY JOB! But I’m going to give 2 reasons because I can’t pick 1!
GE aviation has a purpose statement: “we invent the future of flight, lift people up, and bring them home safely” at the facility where I work we make parts for military aircraft, so when I go into work every day I know what I’m doing is playing a part in getting my husband and our troops home safely.
2. GE is about constantly improving and pushing yourself at a very fast pace. So there is always something keeping me busy or someone pushing me to be better!
Share your best life-hack for saving time or sanity during the work week:
Coffee! Meal prepping and a shared Gmail calendar with my husband! If it isn’t on the calendar it probably won’t happen!
Do you and your spouse or partner split household tasks? How do you do it?
We split the tasks down the middle! We are very much Team Roett. We each have things we prefer (I do laundry, he runs the vacuum), but when one of us is having a busy or stressful week, we flex to help each other.
Are you looking to connect with career-minded military spouses? Join one of In Gear Career’s 20+ local chapters around the world. In Gear Career is a part of Hiring Our Heroes and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
If you have children, how do you and your spouse or partner split parenting responsibilities?
Not traditional children, we are doting parents of a 130-lb dog named Tug.
No children yet – I have a lot of respect for working moms and military moms. Military working moms takes it to an entirely different level.
Tell us one piece of tech you couldn’t live without:
iPhone and everything on it!
Favorite app for making the most of your day?
Fitbit – track all my wellness (calories, steps and activity) with a little competition!
Must-have song on your productivity playlist?
Shake it off!!
What is your No. 1 tip for a military spouse on the hunt for a job?
Don’t let the hunt overwhelm you! Keep LinkedIn up-to-date and attend military veterans/spouse career fairs. Most corporations have commitments to hire military veterans or spouses. Bring energy and a can-do attitude and most hiring managers will take a swing!