In Episode 53 Phil speaks with John Bale, CEO and Co-Founder of Soldier On, a Not-For-Profit established after he discovered a severe lack of support for veterans (and their families) who discharged after sustaining injuries during their service.
John served in the Australian Army for 12 years and finished his career as a Chief of Army Scholar writing on the de-stigmatisation of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in the Australian Army. He was state finalist for 2014 Young Australian of the year and winner of the EY Entrepreneur of the Year 2016 (Eastern Region).
Phil and John talk about changing the perception of Post Traumatic Stress, the value veterans bring to the community, negotiating the 'in between' and the three habits that make founders successful.
3 KEY POINTS
- The mission remains constant (Soldier On's mission is to create the best generation of reintegrated veterans in Australia's history) but how you achieve it changes (07:15)
- Casting veterans with Post Traumatic Stress as the victims makes it easy in the 24/7 news cycle to understand and support the issue. This is not malicious but the conversation has not included the great qualities that veterans bring to companies and society and Soldier On is working to level up this narrative (10:42)
- Being 'in between' (ventures as an entrepreneur or transitioning from the military for veterans) can be really daunting. Having a network of support is essential. For entrepreneurs that means engaging with other founders. For veterans that means connecting with Soldier On (18:36)