Platform’s Evan Hafenbreadl’s Army Takeaways

Published on
May 29, 2024
Platform’s Evan Hafenbreadl’s Army Takeaways

Every year, I’m surprised by the lessons I learn during my annual two-week long training with the National Guard. I’ve been enlisted for nearly 10 years now, but it feels as if there are always more ways to learn and grow my skills as a soldier, and transfer those skills to my civilian career. 

During these two weeks of training, we typically stay at Army bases, but this year the training took place in Florida, which meant we got to stay in hotels. When I arrived at check-in, I quickly realized this was not going to be the luxury stay that might come to mind when you hear about staying in a Florida hotel around spring break time. While many of the other soldiers in my battalion had nice, fancy hotels, we drew the short stick and ended up in a small, run-down hotel, complete with hourly rates.

While the other guys were telling me about their swimming pools and hotel bars, it didn’t get me down. There’s a phrase we sarcastically use in the Army, “Hunt for the good stuff”. Even if you are having a really bad day, just be grateful it isn’t raining.

When I got back to my hotel, I went down and sat by the pool. The water may be green, but at least we had one. I may be in one of the worst hotels in Florida, but at least I am in Florida. And as run-down as it may be, this two-man hotel room is a heck of a lot better than sleeping in the barracks, bunked up with 30 other men.

Maintaining a positive attitude is something that I have learned to take with me into my career. Sometimes at Platform, we get handed difficult tasks and stories. While our clients can sometimes be in tough situations, that does not mean I can’t “hunt for the good stuff” to highlight for them. Being grateful for even the smallest things is a mindset I will forever value in my everyday life.

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