Corporate

Adobe Honors Its Veterans

November 11, 2015

It’s Veteran’s Day in the U.S. today! In celebration of this annual holiday, we are recognizing the bravery and contributions of our employees who have served in the Armed Forces. We spoke with a few of Adobe’s U. S. veterans to learn about their experiences and how that has impacted their careers at Adobe.

mclawson.00Mike C., Managed Services Solution Consultant

Mike is a Marine Corps veteran who served in the infantry. His 15-year service was mainly spent stateside, but also gave him the opportunity to take care of wounded soldiers in Germany. Now at Adobe, Mike is on the Managed Services team as a liaison between sales operations and business units. Mike’s contributions to Adobe include being a founder of the Adobe Veterans Employee Network, a private social network within the company.

Describe the impact of your military experience on your work at Adobe as well as other aspects of your life.
There is a saying that once a Marine always a Marine. This is because being a Marine enters into one’s character. Every day I practice things I learned when I was 17 going through boot camp (like ironing my clothes perfectly). I learned about punctuality, the importance of an organization’s cultural history, adapting under pressure, and that there are no limits to human success if one’s will is strong enough. These characteristics give me perspective that might not come so easily to others. I often fall back on metaphors from my military life to help drive my day-to-day work (tactics) and my long-term goals (strategy) towards success.

What was the most rewarding aspect of your service and how has that impacted who you are today?
My last job was taking care of the wounded Marines coming out of Iraq and Afghanistan. My mandate was to ensure that those Marines had everything that they needed to be as comfortable as possible. It was amazing to me how each and every one of them remained optimistic and believed in what they were trying to do. Go work with a wounded warrior if you want to see men and women who are amazingly hard working and grateful for each moment. Working with them put my life, and happiness, into perspective.

Is there anything that you would like others to know about serving that they wouldn’t know had they not served themselves?
In many ways it is difficult to translate military skills into civilian skills. And although it might not seem like it, those strange military skills can be very useful in civilian life. Deadlines, pressure, and innovation on the fly are all regular necessities in military life. As are leadership, decision-making, and making do with what is at hand. Add to the recipe attention to detail, punctuality, and work ethic. What organization wouldn’t benefit from someone with these skills?

MuntzerBryan M., Territory Account Manager

Bryan is an account executive on the Adobe Connect team, focusing on Healthcare and Life Science customers. As a member of the US Navy from 1997 to 2003, the majority of Bryan’s time was spent as a Sonar Technician aboard the USS Ramage. Following 9/11, his role transitioned to a Force Protection Assistant and Visit, Board, Search and Seizure Training Team Leader training sailors on how to determine if suspicious vessels had ties to “unfriendly” organizations.

Describe the impact of your military experience on your work at Adobe as well as other aspects of your life.
One thing that comes to mind is that no one in the military works “bankers hours.” Though some days are quite normal, other days require that you work long hours in order to complete a mission. As sales people, our lives are somewhat similar. We might have a lighter day in the office with only one conference call, but there are others where we are on planes traveling from city to city, working long hours on proposals, meeting deadlines, etc. The ability to adapt to a variety of situations is a skill set I definitely learned while serving in the military.

What was the most rewarding aspect of your service and how has that impacted who you are today?
The most rewarding aspect of my service happens now more than it did while I was serving. I never get tired of people wishing me a happy Veterans Day, or thanking me for my service. When you’re in the military (at least for me), you are doing a job. I don’t know that I quite understood the impact I was making, or how thankful people were for what we were doing.

Is there anything that you would like others to know about serving that they wouldn’t know had they not served themselves?
The men and women in the military wake up every morning and go to work just like we do. The mission is different, and sometimes the environment is more hostile, but they are working to pay their mortgage, feed their families, etc. They are proud of what they do for a living, and sacrifice a lot not only for their family and friends, but for people they will never meet or know.

cress_1Paul C., AEM Consultant

Paul is a front-end web developer, creating user experience for Adobe Experience Manager (AEM). During his service, Paul was an infantryman in Fairbanks, Arkansas and later transitioned into a role as a language analyst, speaking Mandarin Chinese, for the Central Security Service.

Describe the impact of your military experience on your work at Adobe as well as other aspects of your life.
The biggest impact I can think of is that over the years I’ve gained a lot of experience working with all the branches of the military, as well as government civilians in the various national intelligence agencies. I think that’s helpful for understanding the federal clients we work for which can be frustrating because of the restrictions, classifications, and general slow adoption of technology.

What was the most rewarding aspect of your service and how has that impacted who you are today?
The culmination of experiences over a 10-year Army career has had a profound impact on who I am today. One that I can’t really define in this short space, but I’m very thankful for having had the opportunity to serve in the military. If I had to do it all over again, I absolutely would!

uniform-headshot.fwFrank D., Senior Technical Account Manager

Frank is a Senior Technical Account Manager on the Strategic Accounts Team. As a veteran with 34 years of service, Frank has held 12 different positions, beginning with Machine Gunner and concluding with Joint Planning Staff Officer. During his tenure, Frank also spent a great amount of his time with the Special Forces.

Describe the impact of your military experience on your work at Adobe as well as other aspects of your life.
My military experience is part of my overall vocation. With reference to my various roles over the past 18 years at Adobe, it has given me helpful unique insights into management and training: Whether writing curricula, delivering stand-up training, writing technical documentation or managing a strategic project, I draw on my military experience without often being consciously aware. It is part of me. It has taught me how to build comraderie and motivate team spirit around a goal while having a good time in the process.

What was the most rewarding aspect of your service and how has that impacted who you are today?
I have served globally, including Operation Eagle Claw (the Iranian Hostage Rescue mission in 1980 as a Ranger). This operation helped to shape the current effective structure of the military through the Goldwater-Nichols act in 1986.

Is there anything that you would like others to know about serving that they wouldn’t know had they not served themselves?
The concept of vocation is a vital driving force that keeps one focused and productive through various challenges and some aspects of military service drive this point home with a clarity hard to find in other contexts. The military also affords unique leadership and project management challenges that translate well into the civilian world as well. Reflecting on Eagle Claw and other operations, I wrote this short piece for the Command and General Staff College. It has direct application to vocation and management in any context.