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DoD photo

Editor’s Note: This article by Hope Hodge Seck originally appeared on Military.com, the premier source of information for the military and veteran community.

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DOD/Petty Officer 1st Class Dominique A. Pineiro

Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford went to Capitol Hill on Sep. 26 seeking to remain chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for two more years, and he gave the lawmakers who will renew his tenure just what they were looking for: lots of surprising thoughts on lots of subjects.

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Photo by Senior Airman Perry Aston

After nearly a year on the Joint Staff, I finally feel comfortable in my job. It took longer than I thought. The transition from tactical to strategic is quite the leap. Truth be told, it’s a chasm. The Pentagon can be a daunting place for Army majors. You are the junior officer in every room. Everyone is more experienced and senior to you. However, the experience is a great opportunity, not simply a difficult challenge to overcome. Here are the 12 biggest takeaways from my experience on how military members can thrive in a Pentagon post.

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