On my flight from L.A. to Dallas last week, I noticed the game my seating companion was playing on his iPhone. It was Connect 4! (I still need to download that.) I mentioned it and he said it was kicking his butt and that his kids had added it to his phone. We chatted about kids and iPhone games and then our reasons for being on that particular flight. He was headed back home to Mississippi from California, where he'd been traveling for business. He was a Colonel in the Air Force. We both talked about what our jobs entailed.
When he found out I was in business and working on my MBA, he asked me questions about transitioning out of a military career into the corporate world. I gave him lots of advice about how to position his experience, what sorts of networking and research he can do over the next couple of years before he retires, what level and salary he could expect, and so much more. I literally could not shut up.
I have never been so chatty on a flight, to a perfect stranger, before. That guy knows how much money I make, how old I am, where I grew up, where I went to college, how long I have been married, how old my children are, and who knows what else I spewed out of the course of our flight. He was so easy to talk to, though. He must have felt the same way, because I know all those same facts about him.
Anyway, I hope that he does take my advice about joining LinkedIn, so that we can reconnect and I can get him linked up with a couple of retired military guys I know who are now in the corporate world.
It isn't every day that I get to advise a Colonel in the Air Force.