Not widely known, but I take immense pride in being a parent to a United States Navy Veteran. My eldest son, Michael, not only served our nation but has also achieved certification as a Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) in San Diego, California. This certification underscores to prospective clients and partners that his company fully complies with SBA eligibility requirements and possesses the capacity to deliver.
In the current business environment, there is a pressing need to emphasize that diversity and inclusion are more than mere buzzwords; they constitute essential foundations driving innovation, reinforcing resilience, and securing sustainable growth. Notably, veteran men and women stand out among the diverse groups making substantial contributions to the business realm, offering a distinctive array of skills, discipline, and adaptability forged through their military service.
The Strength of Veterans-Owned Businesses
Veterans are known for their commitment to excellence, adaptability, and problem-solving abilities – traits honed through rigorous training and real-world experiences. These attributes are invaluable in the world of business, where challenges and uncertainties are commonplace. Veterans are also well-equipped to navigate complex situations, making them an asset to any organization.
Establishing a veterans-owned business allows veterans to harness their skills and expertise, and provides them with a platform to continue serving their communities. It’s a powerful way for them to transition from military life to civilian entrepreneurship, contributing to economic growth and job creation.
The Significance of Diversity Certifications
Diversity certifications, such as Minority-Owned Business Enterprise (MBE), Women Business Enterprise/Women-Owned Small Business (WBE/WOSB), or Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), play a pivotal role in leveling the playing field for underrepresented groups. These certifications open doors to opportunities that might otherwise be out of reach, enabling businesses to compete at different levels (i.e. prime, subcontractor, joint ventures) on an equal footing.
For veterans, these certifications offer a tangible recognition of their sacrifices and a means to reintegrate into civilian life with purpose and dignity. It provides them with access to networks, training, resources, and markets, allowing them to showcase their capabilities and bring their unique perspectives to the forefront.
The Synergy: Veterans-Owned and Diversity Certifications
When a business is both veteran-owned; possessing diversity certifications, it represents a powerful force for positive change. It embodies the spirit of inclusion and highlights the rich tapestry of experiences and backgrounds that contribute to the success of a business.
Such businesses not only thrive in their respective industries but also inspire others to embrace diversity and value the contributions of veterans. They become beacons of hope, demonstrating that with the right support and opportunities, veterans can excel as entrepreneurs and make a significant impact on the economy.
Finally, veterans-owned businesses with diversity certifications are not just a testament to the resilience and adaptability of our veterans; they are an example of progress in the business world. They exemplify the aptitude that lies within every individual, regardless of their background or past experiences.
I am truly a proud veteran mother and will continue to advocate and champion diversity and inclusion in the business world. I encourage us all to recognize and celebrate the men and women veterans who have transitioned into entrepreneurship. Their ventures enrich our economy and serve as a testament to the unwavering spirit of those who have served our nation. Through support, mentorship, and opportunities, we can further empower veterans to thrive in the world of business, and in their respective industries, creating a legacy of success and inclusion for generations to come.
Picture: Son Michael with USS Essex (LHD 2 ) Crew