Episode 296 Bob Taylor From Service to Success: Inspiring Veterans Transcript

This transcript is from episode 296 with guest Bob Taylor.

Scott DeLuzio: [00:00:00] Hey everybody. Welcome back to Drive On. I’m your host Scott DeLuzio, and today my guest is Bob Taylor. And Bob is a retired Air Force major who flew combat operations during Operation Desert Storm. He’s also the author of the book from Service to Success, and today, Bob is on a new mission, uh, addressing the struggles that veterans and their families, uh, face by helping them transition into civilian life.

So welcome to the show, Bob. I’m glad to have you here.

Bob Taylor: Thanks, Scott. Thanks for the invitation. I’m grateful

Scott DeLuzio: to be here. Yeah, absolutely. Um, for the listeners who maybe aren’t familiar with you and your background, could you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Bob Taylor: Sure. I’m, uh, I’m just kind of an average Joe Midwest guy.

Went to Michigan State University, uh, graduated with a degree in engineering and, and, uh, took a right hand turn. Uh, one one day of my senior year. Uh, took that [00:01:00] turn into the Air Force recruiter and decided to be a navigator, uh, in the Air Force. And nine months later there I was and, um, went through officers training school and specialized trained for navigation.

And then, uh, and then, uh, was assigned to B 50 twos at Griffiths Air Force Base. Did that, uh, towards the end of my service there, uh, we ended up. Uh, in combat operations operation, desert Storm flying missions out of an island called Diego Garcia, which is almost on the exact opposite side of the earth. Uh, you know, you’re in the middle of nowhere when you describe yourself as being 700 miles from Madagascar.

So, uh, yeah, absolutely. That’s, that’s when I knew I was way out there. But, uh, anyway, I, I, uh, did that time and, um, decided to. Pursue a civilian career after that and, uh, rejoined and went into the Air Force Reserves as a KC 1 35 navigator, [00:02:00] and then finished up my Air Force career as a Air Force Academy liaison officer.

But I was very, I was very blessed. Uh, when I left active duty. Uh, my best friend in college worked for a company that had an opening and, um, so I started out in r and d and went into manufacturing, marketing. And then I had the good fortune to be able to start up my first business with a couple partners, and then, uh, sold my interest in that company and started Alliance Healthcare, uh, about 20 years ago.

And, uh, so I’ve, like I said, I’ve been very blessed to have the good fortune and success and, uh, but I had my struggles along the way. Uh, after uh, we got back from Diego Garcia, I started having these. Terrible nightmares. And I couldn’t, you know, no rhyme or reason. I didn’t have any hand-to-hand combat.

But the, the nightmares were [00:03:00] extremely violent and I didn’t know what caused them, but six months later they just went away. And, uh, and so I thought I’d kind of gotten past it. But, uh, about 16 years later, they resurfaced again and, uh, They were worse. And I got to the point where I, I didn’t wanna go to sleep and uh, so I was struggling and I got to the point where I just wasn’t the person I wanted to be.

And sleep deprivation does terrible things to people. So that’s when I decided I can’t do this on my own. I’m going to the VA for help.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And that’s, I think a lot of people. Are, uh, finding themselves in similar situations where they, they have that situation where, uh, they just don’t feel like themselves, whether it’s nightmares or just other things going on in their lives.

They just feel like whatever is going [00:04:00] on, they’re not the same person that they used to be, and they feel stuck. They don’t know where to turn. They don’t know what to do. Um, but like you, you went to the, the VA and. You know, tried to, to get some help and we’ll, we’ll talk a little bit more about that after the break, but we’re going to cut now to a, uh, quick commercial break.

Um, when we return, we’re gonna talk about, uh, some of the challenges and, um, you know, the experience that you had in the Air Force during, uh, desert Storm, um, and some of the struggles that, that veterans, uh, and their families might, uh, address during the transition period, uh, after getting out of the military.

So stay tuned. Hey everybody. Welcome back to Drive On. I’m your host Scott DeLuzio, and today I’m here with Bob Taylor. Uh, retired, uh, air Force Major who, uh, flew in combat operations over, uh, op in during Operation Desert Storm. Um, Bob, I wanna talk about some of those experiences that you had in the Air Force during Operation [00:05:00] Desert Storm.

Um, and how did that, those experiences, uh, help your understanding of the challenges that veterans face? Uh, after their military career. Uh, you talked a little bit about, uh, some of your challenges just a minute ago, um, with some of these nightmares and things like that. Were any of them kind of related to the work that you did in, uh, operation Desert Storm?

Bob Taylor: Well, um, you know, I think, uh, a, a lot of the challenges that veterans face are kind of steeped in. How much training we get we’re, our mindsets are shaped when we go through officers training, school or bootcamp. And then you go through more specialized training and um, and you start to perform at an extremely high level.

Uh, the crew that I was with, I, I think we, we were just, um, [00:06:00] So well trained. Uh, we had practiced together over and over again and we knew exactly what we’re supposed to do when we’re supposed to do it. So even in a combat environment, uh, it was just part of the job. So that’s one thing about military is going into a firefight, going towards enemy fire.

It just. It’s part of what you’re trained to do and you train for it so much that you accept it, but it’s that high level of training. Yeah. And that high level of performance that, that sets us up for challenges after we’re done.

Scott DeLuzio: Right. And I think some of those challenges, um, and, and that the performance that you were talking about, um, you know, they do.

Train us to deal with some of these high stress situations. But, um, sometimes when you’re getting into, whether [00:07:00] it’s OCS or bootcamp, you’re, you’re trained to put the uniform on and, and be the soldier or the airman or the whatever it is that the job is that you have. Um, but oftentimes I, I’ve found in discussions with other.

Veterans is, they don’t do an incredibly great job at teaching to take the uniform off and transfer into civilian life. Right?

Bob Taylor: So that’s a big part of what I’m trying to explain to people is our mindsets were shaped by the, by the military training discipline. Um, you know, Problem solving, using specialized equipment, all that stuff was conditioned into us.

And then when you get out, so what the military does is it takes many individuals and it melts that down into one mindset, one mission focused, uh, purpose-filled mindset so people know [00:08:00] exactly what they’re supposed to do. So it goes from many to one. And then when we get out, We have to go back from one to many and there’s, there’s no training for that.

So all the tools that were valuable to us in the military, the discipline, the um, following orders, uh, using all the tools that were given, none of that really is applying in our civilian role. And. We need to learn completely new skill sets to prepare for that. And I’ll just use an example, uh, like gratitude.

If I talk to veterans, most of them just kind of scoff at the thought of, what, what do you need? What do you mean I need to practice gratitude? Well, you’re trying to reshape your mindset from what it was, and so you have to start using tools that you haven’t heard of before. Uh, you haven’t [00:09:00] practiced before.

Things like gratitude, self-forgiveness, uh, you know, goal setting, thinking about a new future. No one is talking about that, and that’s what I found in my research when I wrote my book from service to success, is that there really is not a good roadmap for how people reshape their minds so that they.

What, what I say is, your best days are not behind you because you served. Your best days are in front of you and it’s not just gonna land in your lap. You have to do the right things to make sure that that bright future comes to you.

Scott DeLuzio: Right. And I Now, when you were doing the research and you wrote your book, what were.

Some of the steps that you found to be helpful in, uh, addressing some of these struggles that, that veterans and their, their, maybe even their [00:10:00] families have, uh, during this transition period. And, and what were some of the steps that they could take to make this an easier transition?

Bob Taylor: So what I, one of my life’s biggest regrets is that I did not, uh, get help sooner.

It took me the 16 years between my episodes of Nightmares to get help. But in truth, I had other things going on, like depression, irritability, uh, anger issues. All those things were going on, but I was kind of just dealing with it or I was trying to deal with it and, um, I think the, the number one thing is when, when someone suffers from depression, the human tendency is to withdraw.

And the number one worst thing for someone with depression is to withdraw. That’s when we need people around us. [00:11:00] That’s when we need encouragement. That’s when we need our, our tribe, so to speak. And. So what I tried to explain in the book and the research I found is we have to do things that are kind of, uh, anti what we feel like we should do or what we, um, believe that we should do.

It’s just antithetical to our thinking or the, the way that our bodies respond. So, getting help from someone asking for help is. The most important step that any veteran can take, they don’t have to do it on their own. Uh, they honestly probably can’t do it on their own because they don’t have the training or expertise.

Um, so you, you have to ask for help,

Scott DeLuzio: right? And asking for help is such a hard thing for the, the type A personality type people who are, you find a lot [00:12:00] of in the military where they. They’re these rough and tough kind of people, and they are out there trying to conquer the world and, um, well, why would I need help if I’m this type of person who can go out there and do all these these great things?

I, I don’t, I’m not gonna need help. And, and that’s kind of a, the mindset that a lot of us have. And so we don’t go and get help and then we. Like you were talking about, we go further and further down this dark hole, um, you know, whether it’s into depression or, you know, other things like that. And it just doesn’t help when you isolate yourself from e everybody else, right?


Bob Taylor: no. And you know, the, the thing that I’m trying to do with this book is I’m, I’m, I, I’ve got a, a big effort to try and get people to donate by going to our website, patriot promise.org. Go there, buy a book, we automatically donate books. [00:13:00] But I’m trying to get like a hundred thousand of these books in the hands of veterans just to increase the visibility to it.

But the point I try and make to veterans is, uh, I’ll be speaking, um, in a couple months to A L P G, a group of people. Uh, why, why does a veteran wanna speak to an L P G A? Well, there are gonna be veterans in the crowd and, um, What’s interesting is the, the P G A and L P G A have these events, uh, where they train veterans or they teach veterans how to golf.

And so that’s a perfect example. If you start to golf, you don’t just normally know, you know, who picks up a set of clubs and is great at golfing. Um, you have to get trained. You have to get taught on how to use, how do you use a, a sandwich wedge? How do you use a, an iron? How far do you set the t? How do you [00:14:00] line up on the ball?

All those things. They’re not just intuitive, right? So if we can accept that on something as simple as learning how to play a game of golf, why can’t we accept that in order for us to kind of shift our mental mindset? That we need to talk to someone that is a trained professional on how we, I didn’t know that there are exercises that you can do to help you stop having nightmares.

I didn’t know that, but sure enough, after I practiced those exercises, my nightmare stopped. Uh, I didn’t know that I could kind of rethink about how I interpreted things that people say or things that I do or how, how I perceive the world. If I change my perception of that, it changes the outcome of the conversation.

And so it’s just like if, if you break your leg, you go see a [00:15:00] doctor and they put it in a cast, there’s nothing wrong with that. Right? Yeah. But if, if you have some depression and some. Uh, irritability and, and you’re struggling. It’s not a big deal to say, I need to go get help.

Scott DeLuzio: You know, and I’ve always said too, things like you said, like if you have a problem with your car and you go to the mechanic and you get it repaired, nobody.

Thinks twice about that. It’s like, why would you bring a car to a mechanic? Why didn’t you just fix it yourself? But I’m not a mechanic and there’s computers and stuff like that in these cars these days that I don’t know how to fix. So I, I’m not the guy to do it. Um, you know, I, I’ve said that about so many different things.

Going to get your haircut. Well, you know, just cut it yourself. Well, okay, fine. If I wanna look like a clown, I’ll cut it myself, but like, it’s, it’s just not the, the way that these things work. And, um, yeah. Perfect example is going to, you know, get your arm in a cast it, you know, why don’t you just suck it up and deal with it?

Well, because my arm’s flopping around like this and [00:16:00] I can’t really do much with it that way. Like, obviously you’re gonna go get it fixed and you know, when you’re talking about golf, You, you have people who are trained professionals who can train you how to play a, a, a game like that and, and teach you how to do it the right way.

And then you get better at it and amazing, you know, you practice, you get better. And so it, it’s, it’s just, you know, uh, this mind block that we have that, that just. Prevents us from getting the help that we need. Um, we’re gonna cut to a quick commercial break, but when we return, we’re gonna talk a little bit more about this and some of the, the roadblock blocks and barriers that a lot of veterans face when they’re seeking the new mission in their life and trying to find a new sense of purpose.

So stay tuned. Hey everybody. Welcome back to Drive On. I’m your host Scott DeLuzio, and I’m here with Bob Taylor, who has been talking about. Uh, not only his time, uh, in the Air Force, um, his time in Operation Desert Storm, but also some of the challenges that he and a lot of other veterans have faced in their transition out of the military.

So, [00:17:00] um, Bob, could you talk to us a little bit about some of the, uh, common roadblocks or the, the barriers that veterans face when they’re seeking a new mission and a sense of purpose after leaving the military service?

Bob Taylor: So, What I, um, when I have these conversations with, uh, veterans, I just try and help remind them that, look, uh, the training that you received when you went into the military, probably not easy.

The the missions that you went on, probably not always easy, probably some big challenges that you face, but you overcame them. So when you get out, you can’t expect everything to be easy. You have to continue to keep working and striving to overcome some of the challenges that you face. So sometimes there’s frustration with veterans that wanna seek help, but find it really [00:18:00] hard to get into the va.

Uh, that wasn’t my experience. It wasn’t necessarily just walking up and getting an appointment, but, um, you can’t get frustrated and just give up on this stuff. So that’s one of the roadblocks is sometimes it, it can be a little bit of a challenge to get the things that you need. But the other thing is, um, in the military, we’re kind of more told what to do.

You know, there’s, there’s not a lot of self-direction. Um, there, there’s some obviously, and we can kind of choose our paths in the military, but there’s also, it’s very directive, well, when we get out, Um, doesn’t, doesn’t exist anymore. So we’re on our own path. So one of those roadblocks is just having the, the determination and the drive to figure out what your new path is.[00:19:00]

And you can’t be lazy. You can’t just, ah, I’m not gonna worry about it. I’m just gonna take whatever job comes my way, or, um, you’re gonna get back. What you put into something. And so that’s, that’s kind of my, my big pitch on that.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And you, I think that goes with anything in life. It’s not just your career transition or, you know, anything.

I mean, relationships, you’re gonna get out of a relationship, whatever it is that you put into the relationship, your, your physical fitness. If you are constantly putting junk into your body and never working out exercising, you’re not gonna be the most physically fit. Person. Like, it’s just not how that works.

So, you know, if you, if the inputs are good and you’re putting the work in, you’re putting the effort in, uh, then you can expect better results. Um, now maybe you’re putting the effort in, but you’re putting in the wrong effort. Uh, just use the gym example for, uh, for a second here. You could be [00:20:00] going to the gym and say you’re trying to lose weight, but you don’t seem to be losing weight, but you’re not doing maybe enough cardio, for example.

I don’t know. Um, and you’re, you’re doing all this different, all these different exercises, none of it seems to be working, uh, but you’re not doing, uh, the right type of work. Uh, then you’re not gonna get the results that you are expecting. Um, and I think the same thing with a career or, you know, any other.

Area if you’re transitioning out of the military and, uh, you want to be, you know, running a, a business or you be a manager of something and, uh, you have no idea how to do that type of work and you’re not putting the, the effort in to learn how to do that type of thing, you can’t expect yourself to get there either, right?

Bob Taylor: You’re exactly right. You, um, the stuff isn’t going to come, just come, uh, you have to, um, Just as what you did in the service of working hard towards specific goals, [00:21:00] working with a team. That’s the, that’s the other thing is when we’re in the military, very, very little happens, uh, from someone doing something on their own.

It, it, it’s almost, um, impossible to get something done on your own when you’re in the military. Well, If teamwork is a really good tool for success in the military, maybe teamwork is a really good tool when we get out. And um, so it’s really important who we surround ourselves with. Who’s our, who’s our team,

Scott DeLuzio: right?

And our, that, that team, I think it goes back to what we were talking about earlier is reaching out and getting help when you need the help and fi finding the right people to help you. Um, whether it’s a, a therapist or a career counselor or some, someone who can mentor you, guide you, help you out in [00:22:00] whatever situation it is, but it’s even just.

The people in your day-to-day life, it’s not necessarily those specialists who are gonna help, right? With those are more like the surgeons who can do that special thing. And, but the people in your life are, are, are the ones who will notice when you’re not yourself, you know, a, a spouse or a, a child, someone who you lives with, um, those, those people will, will notice and it’s like, hey.

Something seems off. Are you okay? And that they’ll, they’ll be able to help you figure out what it is that you need to do, right?

Bob Taylor: Scott? That’s one of the big issues with, um, with veterans is so I told you, um, so there’s 22 million veterans in the country. About 11 million of those men and women struggle.

In some way, whether it’s ptsd, depression, um, not able to really find their [00:23:00] next identity and, and all that. But, uh, what, what they na, their natural response is to withdraw, right? So many of those 11 million feel isolated. The other ones, it’s kind of related to isolated, but they feel like no one understands them.

So you’ve got 11 million people feeling like they’re alone and no one understands them. Well, the fact is there’s a lot of people that understand, there’s a lot of people that wanna help and there’s a lot of people that wanna kind of walk alongside you. Uh, one of the best benefits that, uh, um, I see in the book from Services Success is the ability for the non-veterans to read the book.

Because they’re gonna learn a lot about what veterans face and the more prepared the spouses or the father or [00:24:00] mother. Uh, we met a, uh, woman at the VA, battle Creek. Her son was a Air Force veteran, and she was excited to read it so that she could understand what her son was facing because he was struggling.

So I, I think there’s a. This book is not just for the veteran, it’s for the families. It’s for the friends, it’s for anyone. That wants to see their veteran, their loved one succeed.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And that’s the similar thing that I get from this show all the time. I get messages from people or, you know, just comments from people who have heard the show.

Um, they’re not a veteran, but a loved one is, maybe it’s their, their child or their spouse or somebody that they know and they’re, those people are struggling with one thing or another. They don’t know how to help. Their loved one. Um, and so they listen to the show, they get ideas, they get, um, you know, different.

Um, you know, tips and, um, one, one woman [00:25:00] actually told me that she, uh, listens to the episodes and she bookmarks, uh, timestamps of, you know, relevant segments that would be of interest to her son. And so he may not be ready to listen to it right now, but there may come a time that he is ready, right? And as opposed to listening to, you know, 45 minute, hour long episode, uh, he can just fast forward to, uh, the.

You know, the 10 minute mark and listen to this next five minute segment. And this is the impactful thing. I’m, I am totally fine with that. Like, pick apart the episodes, listen to the, the relevant parts, um, right. But same thing with your book. Um, and, and you talked about that, uh, you know, how your book is helping people, uh, in helping the civilians understand.

Um, but in your book, I, I did do wanna talk about your book a little bit too. Um, Can you talk about the importance of, uh, like self-forgiveness and healthy li living habits for veterans? And we talked a little bit about health earlier. I’m not sure if that [00:26:00] was directly correlated to the book, but, um, could you talk about some of the things, why these aspects are, are critical for the journey towards, uh, finding this new purpose and tr this transition, making it a success?

Bob Taylor: Right. So we talked a little bit about gratitude earlier. And that’s part of that mental shift to open our minds to see, cuz it’s, it’s hard to be practicing gratitude and feel crappy about your situation, right? They just don’t go well together. So being grateful starts to open your mind to start seeing things to be grateful for.

And then, uh, the self-forgiveness is, is related in that sometimes veterans are their own worst enemy. They blame themselves for things that really are not in their control. You know, I should have been on that mission and then Bill wouldn’t have died, or I’m the one that was supposed to be there, or I should have been there to protect him, or whatever the [00:27:00] decision, you know, whatever those circumstances are, when people hold onto that and ruminate over those things, it does not do the, the person that.

Was actually hurt, probably forgave or would have forgiven. And we’re just carting this stuff around to our own detriment. And so that, that self-forgiveness is, is really, really critical. And, and the whole process, the health, the, the mindfulness, the things that we’re trying to do, all we’re trying to do is reshape our minds to be ready for a new chapter.

And when we open our minds, good things are gonna happen.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And it’s a hard thing to do to forgive yourself for some of those things. And I, I know from personal experience, I’ve, I’ve experienced things where, you know, I’ve beaten myself up and blamed myself and, um, you know, If I was to take that same situation, [00:28:00] apply it to somebody else, that some other third party, and I’m the one talking to them, I’d be like, dude, you’ve got nothing to worry about.

Like, that wasn’t your fault. You shouldn’t be blaming yourself. But then that inner voice, that inner critic is basically the the one that’s out there knocking you down, telling you that you’re the worst, you’re terrible, you did all these bad things when in reality, It, it wasn’t your fault at all. And so yeah, we, we need to do a better job at forgiving ourselves and letting, uh, Letting the the past be in the past and, and kind of learn from it, but move on to the future.

Right. Exactly. Yeah. So we’re gonna take another quick break to pay the bills here, but when we return, we’re gonna talk a little bit more about the, uh, Patriot Pro Promise Foundation and, uh, how it helps veterans, uh, navigate the mental and emotional, uh, aspects of transitioning. So stay tuned. Hey everybody.

Welcome back to Drive On. I’m your host, Scott DeLuzio, and I’m here today with Bob Taylor, who [00:29:00] has been talking about. All sorts of stuff. I mean, his time in the Air Force serving in Operation Desert Storm, his time, uh, after the military, some of the struggles that he’s had, a lot of veterans have had similar struggles.

Uh, the book that he’s written, um, and uh, the way that. Veterans talk to themselves than in the way that we can, uh, you know, help find that new mission in life after leaving the military. Um, but, uh, Bob, I want to, uh, now that we’re back here, I wanna, uh, talk a little bit about the mission and the goals of the Patriot Promise Foundation.

Um, you know, where that foundation came from and how it helps veterans navigating the, uh, difficult aspects of transitioning.

Bob Taylor: So I formed the Patriot Promise Foundation as I was doing the research for the book, and I identified this gap. [00:30:00] Uh, first of all, not all veterans are seeking help, um, but this loss of identity when people leave the military and that there’s this absence of tools of.

Okay. How do I, how do I do a reset? How do I reshape my mind? How do I, um, accomplish great things in my life? And when you take someone, and it happens to athletes too, when you have someone that’s ending their college career and they can’t make it into pros, they feel lost when you have a pro that ends their career because of age.

They’re lost. They feel like they have done the best thing in life that they can do, and now what? And, and that’s what a lot of people in the military feel. So the whole thing with Patriot Promise Foundation is to help create a [00:31:00] path to help veterans discover their best life. Because like I said, their best days are not behind them.

Their best days are in front of ’em. We just have to figure out. What the path is to get from where we’re at to our, our best life in the future.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, and it’s a difficult thing too. I, I talked to a veteran, uh, friend of mine who recently got out of the military a few months ago, and, um, he’s looking for work, trying to figure out what that next.

Stage in his life is gonna be, um, and he’s got, gotten himself, followed all the, the tips and tricks, got himself on LinkedIn. He’s looking for jobs and all that kind of stuff. And he sees all the people that he went to high school with or, uh, you know, grew up with people like that, that he found on there.

And they’re all advanced in their career, their, their management level or executive levels and, and stuff like that at, at [00:32:00] this stage in life and. He feels like he’s on the ground floor and he’s, he’s not able to get to that point. Um, but there’s so much experience that he’s had, even if he doesn’t go into the job that, um, that he was doing in the military, you know, there’s so much experience in the military that he has that he could apply to other fields, right.

Other careers. Um, he’s, he’s able to, Take a step above. Like he doesn’t have to necessarily start at the ground floor a hundred percent. Like there may be some education that needs to be done depending on what career path he, he decides to choose. But, um, you know, I. It’s not like a, uh, you’re, you’re walking in day one as like a high school graduate and you have no experience whatsoever.

You know, and I think employers see that too, right?

Bob Taylor: Yeah. Scott, I, because I’m an author, I guess people want, want me to write articles, so I just recently wrote [00:33:00] an article that was titled CEOs and Veterans Two Ships Passing in the Night and the. The basis of the article is that, you know, CEOs, the HR departments are looking for, for skills.

You know, do you have experience with spreadsheets and, you know, computer software and, um, do you have specific experience? And, um, veterans have a set of skills that cannot be communicated into the civilian world. I mean, I. How many openings for B 52 navigators are there? How you know, how many, you

Scott DeLuzio: know, or infantrymen, you know,

Bob Taylor: like infantrymen or you know, a turret gunner or, you know, whatever it is.

I mean, it just doesn’t translate. So what needs to happen is kind of a meeting of the minds, the HR [00:34:00] people, the CEOs need to be looking for talent, and that talent is leadership. Is drive, determination, uh, dedication, uh, people that work in a team environment and, uh, the veterans need to start communicating those things instead of talking about or acting like they don’t really deserve.

Uh, they have to have the belief in themselves that. Look, I was put into literally, uh, I’m battle tested. I can take a stressful situation and do things that other people can’t accomplish in that environment. Um, I’ve had years and years of leadership training. I can, uh, work with a, a group of people and accomplish incredible outcomes.

So the language has to change the expectations on the CEO part. [00:35:00] And the language needs to change on, um, on the, the, from the viewpoint of the veteran as well. And until that happens, it’s going to be two ships passing the night.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah. And, and trying to figure out how to translate the military service into.

Civilian experience is a, a challenge for a lot of veterans. They, they know, they have the experience, they know they’ve, they’ve led troops, they’ve done, uh, lots of different things. They’ve, they’re tested under extremely stressful conditions, more stressful than you’ll ever see in, you know, a conference room or, you know, a cubicle that you might be sitting in at, you know, some office somewhere.

Um, and so, They know that they can handle stressful situations. They know all of this, but how do you translate that into civilian speak? And, and I think there needs to be, like you said, that meeting of the minds. Um, and, and have the, the HR people being able to [00:36:00] recognize some of this stuff as an asset that can be, be used within their companies.


Bob Taylor: Well, veterans, you know, statistics show veterans are more likely to stay with the company longer. They’re more likely to overcome obstacles. Um, you know, I struggle with that in, in my own businesses. People tend to kind of get stuck, uh, when they’re faced with challenges. And military veterans are, you know, we face obstacles every day of our military career and it, it’s just not something that we tolerate and we’re used to working around situations to get a successful outcome.

So, Part of it is, um, part of it is we need to do a better job of communicating what we’re capable of and how to tell those stories. The other part is we need to be better prepared to [00:37:00] pursue our own passions. You know, when we do a, uh, a job interview for a job, it, it shows you’re just there for a job. And I always tell people, I’m not looking for someone to fill a job.

I’m looking for someone that has a passion. The intellectual curiosity, the drive, the determination to succeed in almost any situation. And when we start having those conversations, good things will happen.

Scott DeLuzio: Right? And when. Someone is passionate about something, they have that drive and determination, their, their willingness to invest time and effort into the, the job and the the career.

You’re, you’re gonna get more out of it as opposed to someone who’s just waking up, looking at it like it’s a job. Like it’s a, okay, I’m gonna go punch a clock and punch in, punch out and, and I’m just going to be here and collect a paycheck. That’s, that person’s not gonna be all that successful, [00:38:00] um, in, in that position.

Um, You know, they may find success elsewhere, uh, when they inevitably leave the company, but for the time that they’re at, that, that company in that particular role, they’re, they’re not gonna be as successful as they could be. Right?

Bob Taylor: Right. So what I advise some of my own employees, and I give the advice to veterans is find something that is greater than yourself.

Find something that you can put in on behalf of someone else’s benefit, and you’ll start to discover things about yourself that you didn’t know. Um, that’s one of the things about military services. It’s service beyond ourselves. You, you take care of the people around you. Uh, men and women have died for their comrades.

In, in very terrible [00:39:00] situations, they’ll sacrifice their, lo their lives for these people. And so that same, um, self-sacrifice is important once you get out of the military to rediscover, find another place where you can do something that is, that serves a purpose beyond yourself.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, absolutely. Because it’s so much easier to.

Want to do that thing. If it’s, if it’s something serving other people, serving something bigger than yourself, um, you know, because. We can be lazy with ourselves. I, I think sometimes where, where it’s like, oh, well maybe I just won’t do that thing today because it’s for me and, you know, I don’t, I don’t necessarily need it or whatever, you know.

Uh, think about, um, you know, going back to earlier in the episode we were talking about like exercise and fitness. Um, you know, if I’m losing weight just for me, um, well, You know, so what if I’m a little bit [00:40:00] overweight? It doesn’t really matter, but I also have kids and a wife, and I want to be here. I wanna be here a long time for them to, you wanna be a good grandpa, I wanna be a good grandfather.

And, and maybe even a great-grandfather someday, you know, if, if I’m fortunate enough to, but if I just let myself go and fall apart, I’m not gonna be around that long to be able to experience that. So, you know, I, I. I would think that in that case, like I’m doing that for somebody else too, you know? Yes. I have the benefits of, you know, I’m not, uh, in as maybe as much pain or I’m not, uh, you know, struggling to catch my breath as I’m climbing up the stairs and like there’s that side benefit for me.

But, but I’m there, I’m doing it for other people too, and that is what pushes me and gets me up in the morning to, to go. Work out and go get that, um, that exercise. But it’s the same thing with, you know, anything else that you’re doing. If you’re doing it, uh, to, as a sense of service, um, you, you’ll end up [00:41:00] doing it better than if it was just

Bob Taylor: solely for yourself.

Right. You get, you know, I, I try and help create wealth for every employee that works for me. And, uh, I try and create a great work environment for ’em. I, I get something back, you know. It. I, yes, I get to help other people. I get to help their family change because of the wealth that we’re trying to create.

But that feeds me, that makes me feel better as, you know, a c e o as a father, you know, someone that, you know, I’m doing things that my family can be proud of. So, um, I get something back.

Scott DeLuzio: Right. And with that, you know, for, from your perspective, those people now have the ability to keep a roof roof over their head, food on the table.

They’re saving for their, maybe for their kids, uh, you know, education and, uh, they’re doing all sorts of things. And, uh, [00:42:00] but that’s because of the opportunities that you’re, you’re providing to them. And obviously there’s their own hard work and, and things like that, that. Is, uh, is necessary as well, because I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t keep them employed for too long if they weren’t putting in the effort, but, right.

Um, but. If the the company didn’t exist, then there just wouldn’t be, uh, that type of stuff that benefit for them. So, yeah, I, I could see how you doing what you do is a way to help those people, uh, in your, your company. So, um, yeah, it, it absolutely it. It’s serving other people. Yes, you get the benefit too.

Because, uh, you’re, if they are doing well, your business is doing well, there’s a benefit for you. But, but also there’s that, that side benefit of, of helping them as well. Um, we’re gonna cut to another quick commercial break, so, uh, stay tuned, everybody. Welcome back to Drive On. I’ve been talking with Bob Taylor about all sorts of things, including his [00:43:00] time in, uh, desert Storm.

Um, the work that he’s doing now to help veterans, his book, uh, and. Bob, we were talking, uh, just before, uh, just a little while ago about the, uh, Patriot, uh, pro Promise Foundation and your book, um, from Service to Success. Uh, for the listeners and the the viewers, could you tell people, uh, where they can go to find out more information about, um, uh, either how to get a copy of the book or, uh, more information about the, the foundation?

Bob Taylor: Sure. So there’s a couple things, uh, that I would ask the listeners is, uh, please go to our Facebook or LinkedIn or Instagram, uh, at the Patriot Promise. Uh, that’s a way to kind of keep in touch with, uh, things that. Um, I have a series coming up called, uh, the Shoulders We Stand On It, uh, [00:44:00] kind of reflects on, I interviewed a 99 year old, uh, world War II veteran who was a navigator in B 20 fours.

And so, uh, it’s just a way to stay connected. But the other place is, uh, to go is the pa it’s, I’m sorry, it’s patriot promise.org. And, um, the. Thing that I mentioned earlier is that I’m trying to donate as many of these books and get ’em into the hands of veterans through, you know, the gracious donations that we’ve received.

I’ve already been able to donate about 1800 books and, uh, that makes me feel really, really good. I’ve, uh, I gave ’em out to, uh, the VA in Louisville. Uh, Nashville, Atlanta, uh, Orlando, Miami, and then, uh, along the East Coast. By the time I got back up to Michigan, the VA in Louisville called and asked for more, uh, because the veterans l [00:45:00] love the book.

So, um, I would just ask people to go there, learn a little bit about the foundation, but, uh, right now I’m running a promotion where, Uh, every book purchased. I’m doubling the donations. So for every book bought, I donate two books. Um, there’s a way to buy one. It used to be buy one, donate, five, now we’re donating 10.

And um, at the top it’s uh, buy one and we’ll donate 20 books. So there’s a path for us to get. Many, many books into hands of veterans who need them. And like I said, not just the veterans, but their family members as well.

Scott DeLuzio: Yeah, and I think that’s an important aspect of it too, that a lot of times people don’t think about when servicing, uh, or providing services for veterans or, or even materials like books and other things like that is that they try to push and get it into the hands of the veterans, but the veterans may just not be.

In a place where they’re ready to accept that help. Exactly. Or, or [00:46:00] get that, that kind of, uh, feedback or information. So getting it in the hands of their loved ones. I mean, if they have people in their lives who care about them, who want to wanna help them see that they’re struggling, they’re gonna do anything to try to figure this out.

And if they don’t understand what it is that they’re going through, they’re gonna wanna learn about. What it is that they’re going through and how they can help them. So yeah, so your book from service to uh, success is one of those tools that people can use to help guide them, uh, to figure out what is going on, what’s the next best step for my loved one to overcome whatever it is that they’re going through.

It could be mental health related issues, career transition, any number of different things.

Bob Taylor: And it’s for all ages. Sure. It’s for all ages. The, you know, the statistics are pretty staggering for the number of, uh, veteran suicides. So, you know, it’s pretty well [00:47:00] known. It’s, it’s about 22 veterans a day, right.

Die from suicide. But what’s absolutely stunning about that is 640 veterans are attempting suicide every day. And almost 1800 veterans are actually planning out their suicide every day. So, um, what was surprising to me in my research is that veterans, my age, kind of the, in the sixties and seventies, were one of the largest groups of, of people who are dying from suicide.

And so this isn’t a condition that only impacts the 23 year olds that are getting out and having served several, um, tours in Afghanistan or Iraq, or, uh, these are guys that have served in Vietnam, in the Korean conflict. And, uh, And whatever conflict, sometimes it’s not even a [00:48:00] combat veteran that struggles, it’s just someone that served their country did a phenomenal job and then gets out and gets lost.

Right? And so, um, I just wanna kind of stress the fact that this isn’t just for the, the young. Uh, it’s anyone, uh, that has served or has a loved one that has served. I think this book is gonna. Help. And that’s the feedback that I’m getting, uh, people that I’ve had a chance to talk to have, you know, it’s, it’s not like they use the book as a manual for life.

And that’s not my expectation, but there’s a nugget in there for somebody.

Scott DeLuzio: Sure. Absolutely. Well, we’ll have links to everything that you mentioned in the show notes for this episode, so anyone who uh, wants to check it out, check it out there. Um, Bob, thank you so much again for taking the time to join us.

I really do appreciate, uh, you, you sharing this information with. With me and the audience,

Bob Taylor: and Scott, thank you for the [00:49:00] invitation and uh, like I said, I’m very grateful to you and your audience for the time to talk about this. I think it’s important. You bet.

Leave a Comment