Col Max Lee shares the opportunities that come at crossroads in your military career.
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I'm looking forward to this next discussion, Dr. Max Lee, retired Air Force colonel, who's going to talk about those career transitions and opportunities that you all will have in your future. So with that, Dr. Lee.Max Lee:
Okay, well, as Dr. Tilly has announced that I'll be here to hopefully entertain and provide some of my perspectives during my time. And as I'm continuing to learn from my experience as a relatively recently retired member, but there's more to the story. So you'll see that it gets convoluted and a little bit weird, but that's okay. That's emergency medicine. So, I don't know. And I won't even try to match the quality and the, you know, the genuine, genuine emotion and caring that we saw with the various other panels before I have. So the only thing I can do is to try to entertain you. So here we go as a dressing monkey of sorts. All right, I have no financial disclosures to make the information presented are those of my own. And they're from my own experiences and opinions. And by no means am I an expert, but rather are continuously learning students and of the presented topics. So with that, a mentor of mine told me medicine is staged theater for Ugly people. So the only thing that I'm eminently qualified for is maybe presenting from my from my lack of looks. So I'll ask the audience, do we have any students in medical students, undergrads who are interested in in emergency medicine and or the military in our audience today? Raise your hand, please. All right. So please, help them understand what they're getting into and to interface with them because some of the leaders at GSA CEP were the ones who brought me into emergency medicine and 20 some odd years later, here I am Here I am talking. So please, I would appreciate if you can extend that opportunity. Army folks who do have either previous experience in the army or currently in the army, raise your hand please. Okay, so we got a little cluster here. Navy. All right, excellent. Air Force. Okay, so we got to kind of the wings of the Air Force, the senator Corps and the Navy side. Excellent. Do we have any folks who are either retired or in the reserve or guard currently? Yeah, great. So we have a great swath of experience and a range of time in the military and in emergency medicine. So please take advantage of our opportunities here, guys, thank you very much. So my background is not going to be the same as yours. And as you can see from some of these uniforms, is dated. And you'll see like, why is this guy wearing an army uniform? Well, you know, why is he wearing a Kevlar vest inside an aircraft. So it's to say my experience will not necessarily necessarily be the same as yours. However, I in that, in that journey, I had an opportunity to get to meet and work with just tremendous people. And if I can help in any way to help you understand some of the opportunities that are available or connect you with somebody with more knowledge in that field, and I have, that is what I see as my role moving forward. So just a brief background, I started my military life as an Air Force Academy cadet, went to U shoes, then went to the EM residency at Wright Patterson, then taught at Sasha and San Antonio emergency program for four years and then went to my operational and command tours. Some people say I dropped off the face of the earth. And if there's one regret, I wish I wouldn't have used that time, in the other side of the operational world as a excuse to not stay connected. Alright, so that's kind of one life lesson I'd like to pass along. Second, then I then I needed to understand what I wanted to do when I grew up and the field of healthcare, the business of medicine, and a lot of things were changing. So I got lucky enough to go to an MPH completed at Ann Arbor, Michigan, then completed a Air Force aerospace medicine residency to understand some of the public health implications of what we're doing and to lead populations to better health rather than just individual or small group of people, or whatever to one The people in the emergency department but how can we translate that into better care throughout the system. Then I went to a command at RAF Lakenheath speaking, you know, going to almost a different. Even though they say the same things, the words are different, like napkins are completely different than what we think of napkins they think of as diapers. So it was a challenge and learning some of the English as they say. And then I finished my time into active duty Air Force as a chief of aerospace medicine FSOC headquarters. I currently am the aerospace medicine consultant at the United States Air Force School of aerospace medicine, where I do a lot of policy work related to aviation waivers and policies regarding who, who and what medical conditions are safe to fly and maybe not safe to fly. And then I also have time carved out to practice emergency medicine. So I have an amazing, amazing opportunity to translate some of my practical and clinical work, excuse me, to, to policy that affects our warfighters. And to admirals point, I know, we don't necessarily talk about lethality. But really what we are here to do, whether we are a corpsman or a medic, or emergency physician, or nurse, all of that really is to provide confidence in our leadership to execute mission. Right? That's really the bottom line, in my opinion. And with that confidence, there's two ways I know how to support that confidence and that we're going to be able to provide the very best care in whatever setting that we are in thrusted upon whether it's in the field, whether it's in a submarine, or on top of the burning aircraft carrier, we have to provide that expert level of medical care. The second is human performance. How do we enable our soldiers, sailors airmen to fight in these challenging conditions and environment to exceed their normal capacity and really win that battle? Because as we learned in T, Triple C, the best battlefield care is overwhelming superior firepower. Right? Okay. So, I'm kind of hard headed. And it took me a long time to understand some of these concepts. And I'm very good at binary thinking, yes, no black and white. But that doesn't really translate in real world. And sometimes it doesn't translate in medicine as well. So let me highlight some of the examples. Instead of yes, no. Is your best possibility for maybe or if certain parameters are met? You may have heard the term? Not no, because but yes, if right, so that's probably important concept in talking to your commanders and leaders on what is possible? Not know, because but yes, if these parameters are met, what about admit or discharge, right? Sometimes this is a clinical one. But how about different aspects of how we practice medicine, it could be close follow up, or maybe there's home care available? Maybe they go home with a PICC line, or they have IDI follow up? How crazy is that? Hey, I'm going to be on the shift next day. Come on back. And I'll check out your wound to see you know, if we need to do anything different or pack it or get more advanced care, observation stays right. There's plenty for our Rob's units and some advanced EDS have smaller, shorter stays that somebody let's say a kiddo with croup in the middle of the night, can stay till the morning and see how they do. So and then there are either other step down care facilities available instead of being a fallen impatient for months on end, there might be a step down care available. So I think how we practice medicine can be applied to a lot of aspects in not only our clinical practice, but in daily life. Other common discussion is, is it medical or surgical, but why not? Both? Right? There's interventional radiology, who is not either medical or surgical, but can certainly help stage procedures, like try to stop the bleeding in the liver. And then because the patient is on the or table for so long, that you know they expire, right? And maybe we staged the procedure. How about new adjuvant therapy? Can we hack out the whole cancer? Well, maybe we shrink it down when medications or radiation and then go after the cancer surgically. And then minimally invasive, and other nanotechnology that is available to us. So both medicine and surgery is advancing at a very rapid rate. And then instead of thinking about now or never think about, well, is this the optimal time? Should we do this now? Or can this wait a little bit? We love making decisions with what information we have because we're emergency medicine physicians that that's what we do best. However, sometimes it's better to delay that decision and make it when it's necessary, especially in let's say something like business or policy right now versus later or when the resources are available. And when it is required, all right? So how do we prioritize and think about what is important to us, and that self reflection, I would argue, is the most important thing to allow you to think clearly about clearly about what might be your decisions and, and decision points in the future. So I'll highlight a couple of them that, you know, we may have thought about, or you may see other people will reflect on. But first is kind of like popularity, right? You know, that little burst of dopamine you get when somebody hits a light button, or you get a positive feedback, you know, that's, that's something that's real. And then maybe some people are driven by money. And, and opportunity to make money as an emergency physician, both as a within the military, but certainly outside as well. What about rank? How do you put $1 cost to the rank? Now there are certainly $1 figure that you get from whatever your service, years of service and what rank you are, but there are other intangibles that just money from the rank? What about power, your ability to change or stop change in something from happening? Right. So that is, at least in my mind, from a person and leadership perspective, is definition of power? Or is it for experience, I love this picture of this kid looking at a butterfly. And there's just genuine surprise and wonderment and excitement and engagement. And, you know, maybe that's you, when you teach residents in DC a new way to insert a central line, or new way to approach a patient disease process when the when that light bulb comes on, that's a powerful thing. And in that might be something that you value, is it for legacy of what you're leaving behind whether it's written words, or whether it's the number of people you've trained, or interacted with, or helped along the way, that can be a certainly a powerful force. But what I have to say that's common to everyone here in this audience is service, you've signed up to serve the nation's call. But not only that, to serve those who fight for our nation's causes. So I think that could be one of those unifying things, and something that we need to consistently think about whether we're in the uniform or not as we move forward. All right. So I sometimes see the career decisions as a midlife crisis, not from a you know, should I buy a sports car? Or do I run a, you know, run off and get married to somebody else. Not in that sense, but in a sense that some doors open and certain doors close. There were opportunities to maybe for me to stay more operational or utilize some of my aerospace medicine training to go to the astronaut corps or other things, but those open and close certain opportunities and avenues. So you have to really carefully think through that those decision points, and it's stressful. But it's okay, it's stressful. And I feel that this is us stress, because this really is a first world problem, isn't it, you're having an opportunity to do amazing things and affect people's lives. And doing it in a positive, altruistic, hopefully, and in a socially acceptable way. So although it is a challenging and sometimes stressful situation, take advantage of it. Because with each openings, there might be closings, and with each doors closing, there might be new opportunities that open, it may lead you down to a new path. And sometimes it can be a very circuitous route, maybe you do an operational tour, and then you come back to teaching, and then teach your residents the value of understanding how to deal with the line and the leadership. Maybe you do an MBA after you know or an online MBA, you will utilize those skills to affect the healthcare system to help out the very people who you're serving. So these are some challenges and then there are pitfalls, right? If you are not clear on what you have thought through and what are your values, and orient your life goals and future with those values. I would posit that there will be future challenges and second guessing that comes about and cause more stress. So that self reflection I think is critical piece of understanding where you might want to go okay, so how do you find your passion? And these are some of the questions that I pondered and loved and none of these are new ideas under the sun. I'm sure you've seen this at you know, the 12 o'clock Saturday infomercials. So I'm not saying anything new here. But these are kind of important questions that I felt helpful in May making my decisions. One is what am I good at? Or what can I excel at? Right? So I may want to play professional basketball, but I know I'm not going to excel in that field, I haven't had the training, I probably don't have the size and speed to do that. So okay, but are there things that I am uniquely able to do because of my talents and experiences? Alright, so next is, Am I on the path towards eudaimonia. So this was a taken from a speech that JFK delivered in the 60s, and the meaning of eudaimonia, it really is probably best translated to human flowering, right, human flourishing, and your ability to really understand and reach your full maximal potential. So is what I'm pursuing or about to pursue in the next five to 10 years, what will bring me eudaimonia. And to the Greeks, that was the true definition of happiness, in pursuit of happiness, knowing that you're on the path to really fully realizing your capabilities. And eudaemonia, I think is a wonderful word to illustrate that. And then third, do I have to do this? Or do I want to do this? That perspective is amazingly powerful on when you go to work, or when you are making your living, both during military career and afterwards, right? If you have a passion to do it, you know, as a retiree, many people would say, Well, why are you working? Now? Why do you work as hard as you do? Or why are you involved with certain groups in organization? Well, because it brings me happiness. And because I want to do it, not because I have to do it. And because I enjoy the company and the people that I've worked with. And I also feel that I have to give back to the community that has helped me so much. So again, looking through this, and deeply thinking about what you're passionate about, will help you find that answer. So I'm sorry, I don't have a canned answer in saying you should do this, this, this and then this, because everyone's experience, interests, passions are going to be different. But I'm what I'm trying to lay out is a general principle in general idea where I found most useful in making my journey, but also, as I discussed openly with other people on how I made that decision. Okay, so as that time came nearer, and nearer and nearer retirement, how do I make that and retirement decision? And for some of our medical students, and someone, some, some of our folks starting off early in their career, this might be a long ways off idea. You're like, Oh, am I ever gonna see till retirement? And quite honestly, I thought very similarly at that time. But as time came closer, some of these discussions and thought processes were clarified. And I was able to kind of put it down into these three ideas. And then I'll give you my cynical one, because, you know, I told you at the start, I can't compete with other folks here to make it a little humor, sorry. So about five years before the end of my active duty time, I started thinking about what are my values? And are they aligned with the values of my organization, and you see the core values of our three sister services up there. And, and these are amazing, time tested and true values that will help you not only in the military, but is so sought after outside of the military, that you have a huge leg up on a lot of your other peers, who do not have these amazing experiences, though challenging as they may be. Next is, am I developing and working towards a goal right? Am I in that pursuit of eudaimonia? And am or am I just checking the calendar on the shifts work that I've done? Or, or you know, just going through the motions? Well, you have to find joy in what you do. So you have to think deeply in about what is it that you're working towards? And then lastly, am I holding others or my organization back? Right? I mean, I can't speak for anyone else but myself. But if there are other capable subordinates who should be taking on your roles, it's part of your job as a leader to help develop them and get them ready for that next role. So that was one of the things that I looked at. Now. I had a chance to discuss this with one of my close colleagues and he says, You know what, I think this can be all turned down into what we call, don't be an appendix, Colonel. Anyone ever heard of that term before? Okay, so don't be an appendix Colonel. So let's think about the anatomy of the appendix. Right? One, it had a purpose, but now we don't know what it really is about. Alright, second, if it's removed, there's no significant harm to the person or the organization. Okay. And then third, when it's noticed, it's usually a problem, because it's usually full of stuff. All right, so don't be an appendix girl. All right. You know, when people say I'm going to retire from active duty, a lot of people think about, this guy is gonna get a boat, move down to the panhandle of Florida and fish and you know, chill out in the water. But you know, a lot of things occupying eat up your time. So don't think that once you get out of the active duty military that you're gonna have any more time, the cumulative trauma, both mentally and physically over the course of your career is going to have an effect. And you're going to probably need some time to get some things that are fixed that you have neglected because of career deployments, etc, including your family. So personal health needs of the immediate family. And what I've recently discovered and having had been working through is aging parents, I never thought I'd have to think about wills, power of attorney. You know, anytime there's a illness or a challenge, medically, guess who gets the call, right. And it's even too extended, of course, all two cousins, sometimes friends. So it's a true, I call it a, it's a honor to be able to advise and help in those critical moments of somebody's life, not only for my parents, but to my extended family and their friends. So I appreciate that. But it will certainly eat up some of your time. And then whatever your new role is, or new job is, or maybe you have a serious hobby that you want to turn into a business. So that'll certainly may be able to eat up quite a significant chunk of your time. And then opportunities to enrich yourself and others through social and community volunteer involvement. And part of what I do is to try to improve what we do as GSA CEP and I find that very rewarding, and then I've been able to connect and work with my church because, you know, I found peace and, and solace during some of the more challenging times in my life. So it's, again, an opportunity to get back, but whatever it is, that drives you and your passion. Being emergency medicine, doctors and being physicians, you it will consume your time. So don't think that just because retire life is gonna get necessarily more relaxed or easier. Or other things I wish I knew before retirement. Separation doesn't mean you give up all the credits of your service. Did you know that you could buy back some of your time if you go into the GS system as a retire it towards a GS retirement? Interesting, right. So there are opportunities there. And I'll have links in the talks. And hopefully, these talks will be available to download for our participants. And those links will take you to the sites that gives you kind of the source document and where you can find these things. So I hope you guys use it in the future too. For as a reference. Military service buyback time towards first time I mentioned that anyone heard the rumor that like service academy time kind of counts towards your retirement. Anyone heard of that? Okay, so some some folks who may be service academy grads, but there is it's not towards your military retirement. But if you do the government service retirement, it will pay back we will add to that government service. So for example, if you retire at 16 years with government service, you'll get credit for 20. So there's interesting things that can happen with your service academy time. And those processes and and source documents are listed here for your reference. A couple of other things. Anyone heard the kind of the thing about if your Uniformed Services University that you'll get time added towards your retirement, right, we've probably heard that and seen maybe the documents floating around so there's a source document in that link, it'll take you directly to that PDF that was signed in 2003. I believe that gives you that extra time at the end. So you have to hit 20 and then you get credit for roughly for it's like three years and nine months afterwards. And and the important thing here is it's not 20 Let's say you go to 22 years and you add four years of you shoes, you multiply that by the base pay at 22 years highlighted In the red circles, rather than 26 years, right, so even though the difference is relatively small, their math is a little bit nuanced, you know, that's the personnel system doing its thing. So I would consider that carefully if you want to fully fully retire, and you want to utilize your monetary retirement benefits appropriately. Okay. Okay, I'll cover these in the slides. But I put this year as a reference for different websites that you can go to look at, look into some of these things. And this is kind of near and dear to my heart now, because my oldest son is about to go off to college. So the 911 GI Bill benefits are just amazing. And if you are looking into retirements, and if you are within maybe four or five years of getting out, I would highly encourage you to look at how you can be eligible to transfer those benefits that benefits transfer will, will open so many opportunities if you have children, or dependents. And what that allows you to do after six years, you're eligible for buying into that transfer, and then you sign up for for more. So if you're at the 10 year career mark, that's usually early majors mid major timelines, if you are make thinking about that decision four to five years before whether you separate or retire, making that decision to look into the benefits are awesome. And let me tell you why. First, you can transfer the benefits to multiple kids, or spouses. And in many colleges, if you apply for one year, it translates over to the rest of the three years while they're in college. So you can so I have four children, I'm going to divide each of those benefits, nine months each to my children, because you get 36 months. And during that time, they'll get paid for the in state tuition rate plus the five base rate for their food and room and boarding. What an amazing, amazing benefit. But wait, there's more. The Yellow Ribbon programs, the lot of the universities have recognized the benefits of and the sacrifices that military families have made in their service along with their active duty member. So they have a matching program for so you might be in a private school or a private institution. And they have matching programs towards a Yellow Ribbon Program. Oh, and by the way, some yellow programs extend out to graduate school. So if you're able to save some portion of your post 911 GI Bill, and then they can match the Yellow Ribbon Program for the graduate programs, which are typically much more costly than you would have a huge benefit. So look at the options, and carefully consider when you might want to use that gi benefit or Yellow Ribbon Program matching. Right. So it doesn't always have to be for undergrad, I think the limit is up to age 26. So they have some time and depending on what their long term interests are, there might be a very strategic advantage of waiting a little bit more. And in the talk, you'll see this link there. But there's this thing called the GI comparison tool put out by the VA. And if you go there, you can search the school by names and locations and compare what they offer, what G What Yellow Ribbon programs they have, what gi programs they have 911 GI Bill programs they have matching. So this is like one of the coolest sites I've seen in helping plan my family for further education and future. And then, as a service member, amazing, amazing scholarship opportunities. I'm not at all affiliated with this organization, but it's Folds of Honor. And if you have honorably served in the military, your family and children are eligible for significant scholarship opportunities. And the cool thing about scholarships and depending on whether it's a scholarship or a stipend, it may allow you to save some of the 911 bills and then use that for room and board. So sometimes you can't use sometimes if some of these scholarships take away from the total amount paid out from your 911, post 911 GI Bill, some of them add on to it. So it's a careful it's something to consider as you look carefully. But the great thing is there's this amazing thing called Facebook that allows you to look at these things and there's Facebook families within that university or college that they're very helpful in reaching out and helping you navigate through those challenging waters. I'm not a big Facebook user, but my wife convinced me that hey, there are some redeemable and really made Need stuff that's available when use well and appropriately? Okay? Maybe you guys are interested in interested in opening a business, or maybe you're interested in developing a new device that's going to not only be able to help pediatric patients, but OB patients and you know, various other, you know, sized folks and you're like, hey, I have this idea. And I'm going to start this, there are Veterans Assistance programs to help you get started on these business ideas. Because you are a veteran, and if you have a service connected disability, so how many people are flight surgeons or have a flight surgeon billet, okay? Did you know that as a flight surgeon, because you're exposed to a lot aircraft noises, you're going to have some hearing loss. Now, whether that's just through normal aging or through exposure to loud aircraft, hard to say. But that's a service related disability. And you get in you have an automatic competitive advantage and bidding for government contracts and in small business business initiative. So understand those roles. And the links hopefully in that system will guide you to some of the resources that are available. So it's really amazing to see that all these benefits are within our easy grasp only if we ask or only if we seek out rather than I don't I, it would be very tough for Let's see our veterans returning from the Vietnam War, right, a very different picture. And a very different situation that we're in today. So what what a great time to be military service member. Okay, my chair, Dr. Glenn Hamilton and right Wright Patterson, er right state program, said during residency, he said, you know, you get three things in the job. One is job satisfaction, second is pay. And third is how great the location is just pick two out of the three, because you're not going to get all three of them. And that kind of happens also with pay. So your gross earnings may increase as a civilian, whether you're a civilian or contractor, or even if you're out in the community working in the emergency department, or your gross pay will definitely go up. But I think most of us have found out that Florida, California and Texas provide the best tax shelter for a while or serving active duty, right, a lot of that goes away. So sometimes there's state taxes or city taxes in such that take away from your overall take home or net pay. So however, the disability pay is not taxable. Right. So just to be clear, that you guys understand, and some states allow a reduced rate or non tax for retirement purposes. So I think there are 33 states that offer that. So whatever you wherever you settle down, kind of look at that aspect. Because when you when you're making real money and outside, then then it may make a little bit more of a difference on where you settle. Okay, spouse and children Survivor Benefit Program. So there is an opportunity, if you're a retiree to pay a certain amount of money, in that in case you die, your survivors get about 55% of your retirement pay for the rest of their life. So it's pay up earlier, it's almost like a disability income or disability insurance, right, you're paying up earlier to protect them, if you were to pass away earlier. So there's a calculator out there that's available to do that. And if you get into contact with me, I'll make sure that you get that calculator to make that discussion. Because even though the average age might be 78, for males in the United States, currently in a almost ad for females, if you've lived to 45, or 50, that number is much different. It's maybe 85, or 88. So it'll allow you to have a mathematical inflection point on whether to do the survivor benefits or not. Right. So it's a pretty cool tool, and I'll be happy to share that with you. Now, going specific into the general schedule, we call g s, sometimes government service, but in the parlance of the personnel list, and payroll, g s is general schedule. And then there's a grading system from grade one early, you know, younger, less experienced to grade 15, which is the highest GS grade before you go into the SES grade, which is kind of the geo equivalent or flag rank or equivalent. But within the GS system, you have steps steps one through 10 Depending on your seniority and experience. So although you may think that uh, hey, I'm an experienced emergency department, physician, I'm going to work in a residency where I'm What was you know, supervising residents working with, you know, complex issues, I should be Gs 15, grade 10, there may be some advantages to going, you know, Gs 15, and then grade one because it allows for increases in your salary down the road. But where that is made up is the next line, there's this thing called a locality pay. So if you look at the GS table on any DoD resource, you will see that it's maybe half of what a em physician might make. But if you look at the locality pay, it's different for each geographic area and for the specialty, so they try to get you to market value in that area, right. So that locality pay is the real negotiation point, in my opinion, rather than what your step grade is GS, because it's going to go up to understand understanding some of the areas where you can argue or not argue, but discuss what the right concepts are, right GS position is, will help you be that, that much more employable with that process and program, annual leave, this isn't negotiable as well, who would have thought and leave would be negotiable. But depending on number of years of service, if you've had 15 years of service in that career field that you're working for, you're allotted eight hours of paid leave for annual leave per pay period, which is about two weeks, versus if you only have like, you know, if you don't have much experience at all, then you only get like four hours per that two weeks. So it's almost a double. So with your experience as a military physician, especially if you're going to join on as an emergency physician, highlighting your experiences, that career field can help significantly and how much leave, you accrue. Sick leave a standard at four hours per pay period, which is amazing, because you know, now you have time and, you know, time allotted to take sick leave. And when used correctly, I think it's a real boon because sometimes I don't, you know, if I have a kid who needs to go follow up for an appointment, that I might use only two hours, right, and you can take leave in smaller increments. And you can do it almost by half day or sometimes even by the hour. So, you know, your 40 hours of leave may be much longer than your traditional military leave of five days versus seven days, right? Because when you're on leave with the civilian system, you're not, you know, count the weekends, you know, because you're not expected on that time. The Federal Employee Retirement System, again, with a military retirement and the Federal Employee Retirement System, it's one of the few pension programs that are available anywhere in the United States. Right. So I think this is a amazing opportunity. And there's math and calculation that goes with it. And then most of all, you know, if Congress votes for something as a savings program, you know, it's a pretty good deal. The TSP is an amazing process. And you should, I think, as an active duty member take full advantage of that. But especially as a retiree here, or if you're going into the government service, because they'll match your TSP as well up to 5%. So great resource. Okay. And so I said I'd bring, I'd have a little twist at the end. There is this thing called a retired individual mobility or mobilization, Augmentee, or retired ima. So I'm currently going through a process to be a retiree who also serves as an ima. Now, how does that work? Right? So one, you have to get through this indispensability clause. So somebody's gonna really want you to be there, because you have some experience and knowledge that they want from you. Usually, flag officer has just kind of helped sponsor that. And then but during your career, you might, you may get an opportunity to work with some people that really want want you and want to work with you, even after your careers done. retiree status, you stay and you still get your retiree pay, but when you're activated, you get paid as the reservists but the cool thing is that time when you're activated, counts towards your added retirement time. So if you retire with 26, you work towards maybe a 30 year retirement, but you also get to serve your country and be involved with the mission. So those are some interesting opportunities. And if you have any questions, I'd love to talk about it with you. All right, homestretch here. So what are my three takeaways, first scheduled time to self reflect right? You can call it journaling, meditation, prayer, mindfulness, single tasking, whatever it is. Take time and schedule time to self reflect. Know yourself and know your enemy and you will need not fear the result of 100 battles Sunsoo We don't learn from experiences we learn from reflecting on the experiences of John Dewey. And if I had an hour to solve the problem, I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem, and five minutes thinking about solutions, Albert Einstein, I think those are some wise words and important as you set that factor on where you want to end up in the future. Second, plan to win the long game. We love rushing to decisions, because we're emergency medicine, we got it, we have the abilities, we're going to do it right. But life is maybe a little bit different than emergency medicine. So I think transitioning and thinking about the long game is important. And really isn't this the definition of resiliency, right, as we're all trying to get there and to make ourselves more resilient. So plan for the long term and the long game, life is a marathon, not a sprint, the winner of the marathon has the fastest average speed, not necessarily the fastest top speed. And to win a quick victory at any cost, is that worth losing the ability to build a team of supporters in the future? Right, this is a team game, we can't do it alone. And my last point here is bolster integrity, and build relationships. During the Roman times of the Republic, the soldiers will strike the palm of their sword on their caress or breastplate, and the ringing tone instead of a whack or a thud would indicate the armors completeness and, and unbroken miss, the soldier would then shout Integritas. letting their commanders understand that they are dressed, but not only that, they're mentally ready for the duties at hand. This is a paraphrase from general Coolatta, the Commandant of the Marine Corps speech in 1999, he was our commencement speaker at you shoes of my graduating year. So this kind of resonated with me, as you know, as I read about this, so again, that integrity is the core value and the thing that is gonna help set the right factor on where you need to go. However, it's important to understand that through low integrity is the common courtesy. Respect is a delivery mechanism. If people do not want to work with you, or if they fear you, you'll never get the best answer or full participation, and integrity and respect are earned and exchange with both supervisory subordinates across across the way your family. So it's not just a one way thing up or down, it goes side to side, up and down. And everywhere else in between. Stated differently, the amazing and positive effect of integrity is lost when practiced without the purpose of building relationships. So mentor, coach and be an advocate for our future leaders, build teams that can solve yet unknown problems for the future, and pay it forward. And always don't forget your family, because they've been with you the whole time. So my last slide here, I'll leave you with this. You know, as he looked back and review some of the literature I got, I didn't really understand what they meant when I read this play by William Shakespeare as a high schooler. But as I look back and think I go, Man, this guy had it right. He understood what was happening. And I'll just read you a small snippet. So if you concentrate on the soldier and the person with that powdered wig or the magistrate I'll just read you the excerpt from there. As he described the different stages of life. Then a soldier full of strange oaths and bearded like the part I think he's talking about a leopard jealous in honor sudden and quick and coral seeking, seeking the bubble reputation even in the canons mouth, and then the justice and fair round belly with good Capen line Capen being fed and fed chicken with ice severe and beard, a formal cut full of lies, saws and modern instances. And so he plays his part. So with that, I just would like to say thank you for letting me play a small part in your your time here at GSA set conference. I'm looking forward to having the conversations with you, learning from you, and conveying any messages or helpful hints that I might have to better connect you and have you ready for the future. I just want to thank my amazing family and my wife who we met at issues. She is kind of the she is definitely the wind beneath my wings and sail as we go through our life journey together. And the QR code will link you to the GSA CEP or I'm sorry, Jess s feedback forms. And I would sincerely appreciate your feedback on on not only my talks, but the other talks, because our goal is to improve the delivery and the value that we bring to our organization. So with that, I know I'm definitely out of time. I thank you for your attention. And if there's any time for a question, I'd be happy to answer any Laura, are these two questions I am Allah. Yes, stepped down.Unknown:
As much as a suggestion. If you haven't looked into the idea of incorporating yourself and becoming or treating an LLC for you or your family, there's various ways of doing that. from state to state. But I would highly recommend it as a way to protect your assets, especially if you step out into the civilian world practice medicine. It will help protect you from adverse events. It's also a way to shelter your assets from taxes and things like that. It's an easy and cheap thing to do, you can do it at any time. Suppose you're gonna do something unusual in your military career? That's not a standard, a nine to five?Max Lee:
Yeah, why is it advice, and there's some nuances on what you can and can't do and different advantages of S corp versus LLC. And I'll be happy to discuss some of those finer points if you have questions. One more question. Yes, sir.Unknown:
Madigan, first of all, thank you for your service and your ongoing service. It's amazing. I have a question about how long did you actually take while you were still? Prepare?Max Lee:
Yeah, great question. I think I thought about it after. Honestly, after my, my fun time, my time with the units and with the teams were over. I said, What is you know, what am I really about? What do I want to pursue? Do I want to do the command track? Do I want to climb the military, you know, ranking system. And so I had to seriously think about what my, you know, talents, as well as what my interests were, and also with what my family was willing to support and work together on and from the onset, I told them, hey, this is a, this is something I can't do alone. And we'll have to work together. So probably about six years before I started thinking about it. Probably in the start of my last job as the F sock aerospace medicine, the SGP and F sock I made the decision to retire. And it took about two years to plan all these things. And then COVID threw everything in a loop, I couldn't get my VA appointment to get all my physicals and you know those things done, but have faith in the system. The VA does a really amazing job of following up I got a call like six months after I retired. And then, you know, my pay hadn't come in from my disability retirement stuff. And they follow it up and they say, Hey, we've adjudicated your letters in the mail. And oh, by the way, we're going to back pay for all the months that you weren't paid for. And then I got a call from Herbert field at headquarters FSOC and say, Hey, currently, I know you've retired and you did a partial duty. It's been about 10 months, I'm sorry, it took this long to process, but you will be deposited this amount that you're owed, I had completely forgotten about that. But especially from a retirement perspective, the system and the VA and the processes are there to really protect you and work with you. So have have confidence in that and take the tabs class multiple times if you can, because you'll you'll learn a lot about the all these resources that are available into much greater than details and I have outlined here. So thank you very much. You guys are amazing group of people. I'm here to assist or advise in any way I can. And I look forward to meeting you and getting to learn a little bit about your life story. Thank you