Navigating Your Transition to Industry Seminar: What They Don’t Tell You Before Retirement

On Nov. 15, WashingtonExec is hosting its popular “Navigating Your Transition to Industry Seminar: What They Don’t Tell You Before Retirement for government executives looking to shift their careers to the private sector. Intelligence community, military, law enforcement and civilian leaders in all stages of retirement transition are encouraged to attend — and the longer an executive has spent as a public servant, the more reason to participate.

Previous attendees include three-star generals, admirals and SES/SISs. The seminar’s all-afternoon line-up of speakers will provide invaluable advice to help professionals mitigate the “10-month blues” and avoid “feeling around in the corporate darkness” once an industry position is secured.

The event will also address how executives can transition to their second job. Almost 80 percent of new executives only stay at their first post-government company for over 18 months. The seminar is geared toward GS-14 executives and above who will head to a director, vice president or higher position in the defense industry. New this year: Executives who successfully transitioned to subject matter experts and media commentator, as well as entrepreneurs and those clinching global security opportunities in Silicon Valley, will provide workshop sessions.

Keynote speaker topics and breakout session topics include:

  • Transition Techniques and Paradigm Shift: What they don’t tell you at your retirement seminar
  • Building a Subject Matter Expert/Media Commentary Personal Brand
  • Dos and Don’ts of Working with an Executive Recruiter
  • Business Acumen Fundamentals: Effective Business Development, GATE Reviews, Pipeline Techniques, Profit and Loss, Financial Statements, etc.
  • Public, Private and Private Equity Corporate Culture: What to Know Before You Go
  • First 90 days, 12 Months and 18 Months in Industry

A career pivot takes time and consideration, especially for those who spent their entire lives in public service and reached positions of power, influence and privilege. If this change is not managed well, a company’s new hire investment could be jeopardized and the incoming executive may experience disillusionment and a failed career start. As Mark Chadason, founder of the seminar says, “There is no Jerry Maguire in transition; nobody represents your interests as you change from public servant to business executive.”

Previous keynote speakers include:

  • John Sutton, chief operating officer at KeyW
  • Balan Ayyar, president and CEO at
  • Joe Cubba, vice president of defense and intelligence at IBM
  • Frank Helmick, vice president of mission solutions at SOSi

The program also includes insights from executive recruiters, entrepreneurs and personal branding consultants.

Since 2016, the program has expanded to include speakers from government contracting, global security and risk assessment as well as security startup organizations. WashingtonExec runs these seminars because the school of “hard knocks” is not easy. The learning curve for organizations with senior government executives transitioning to the private sector is large; both employers and future employees deserve an effective transition process.

Register for the seminar here.

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