My Naval Transition:
Everything my family and I had endeavored over the last 8-years was going to come to a screeching halt with my military transition. No more handholding during overseas moves, guaranteed job, and no more financial security. We had no idea what our next chapter in the book-of-life was, but we knew we had to come up with an idea and quickly!
With 6-months until discharge, I was able to secure a position in my hometown that would utilize a similar skillset as what I did in the Navy. I was relieved that financial security was no longer at risk.
This was true until the day a Tech Qualled recruiter reached out to me on LinkedIn. The message titled “
Seeking Veterans for a World-Class Training Opportunity.” This grabbed my attention until I read the word “ sales”. My first thought provoked an image of a car salesperson or the pesky telemarketer who will not stop calling. I was not convinced Tech Qualled was looking for top-tier talent with the word “sales” in their program. I did not want a sales career. Engineering, supply-chain management or information technology was my idea of a world-class training opportunity.
Tech Sales Career…Wait, What?
This pre-defined belief was quickly debunked – a Google search concluded that tech sales are prestigious, not to mention, the pay was much higher than the job I currently had lined-up. I was eager to learn more, and with a quick reply to the LinkedIn message, I had an intro call booked the next day. Following the call, I was hooked and knew without a doubt tech sales was exactly what I was looking for!
Meritocracy, high earning potential and a dynamic occupation all describe the IT sales world.
I performed well during the selection process and the day finally came – I received the call from TQ’s CEO, Nick Breedlove, who was excited to announce I was selected as a participant for Cohort 11! I was ecstatic! Following the conversation with Nick, I quickly made a call to my wife to tell her the plans have changed – I was pursuing a sales career after all!
The Launchpad Academy training was much more than what I expected. Not only was I obtaining valuable soft-skills, but they were also teaching me technical skills around data center, networking, IoT, cloud and more. I spent 20-30 hours per week working on homework, creating pitch videos and participating in live role-plays. This was an experience I had not envisioned when I initially joined the program. During the final week of training, the in-person boot camp takes place in Fort Worth, Texas. While there, I was introduced to Fortune 100 executives who participated in the live role-plays and stretched me far outside my comfort zone.
The Placement Process:
Upon graduation of the program, the final step was placement. I had my eye on a few different organizations, but one company stood out –
Tektronix. Throughout my time in the Navy, I had the opportunity to use their products and I was a fan of the company’s long, rich history. Fortunately, Tektronix had multiple decision makers at the boot camp, thus expediting the interview process. Within one week of graduation, I had a trip to Tektronix HQ booked which ultimately led to being offered a position. Life as an Account Manager:
In my current role with Tektronix, I have the opportunity to work with the brightest engineers in the most innovative region in the world – Silicon Valley. Without the training and opportunities that Tech Qualled provided, I would be in my hometown working an unsatisfying 8-5 job with minimal financial security.
To all veterans considering Tech Qualled – if you are looking for a highly rewarding career with endless opportunities, Tech Qualled is the gateway!
Jake Graves lives in Santa Clara, CA with his wife and two children. A graduate of Launchpad Academy’s Cohort 11, he now works at Tektronix as an Account Manager for the SW Bay area. When he is not working, you can find Jake on the golf course, fishing, or having game nights with his family.