After the recent wars, service members understand the importance of being able to distinguish between information that can be shared with the greater public and information that should be withheld.
This frame of thinking carries over from the military to the corporate world as well. There will be situations you encounter where you will need to evaluate whether sharing information – even what to you may seem an innocuous comment – will have an impact on others perception of your professionalism:
Just think about an interview, you wouldn’t tell a story about the time you got upset with a co-worker, even though for most people, it is quite a relatable experience.
The phrase “Every day is an interview” has really resonated with me as of late. And, I would attest not only every day, but that every second of every day is an interview.
One of my friends recently left active service and was working for a smaller private company. After spending a weekend partying, he showed up to work worse for the wear. Instead of keeping the details of his weekend to himself, he proceeded to tell all his co-workers about his exploits. That might be an appropriate subject for the Marine Corps infantry, but not necessarily for the private sector. His credibility as a professional suffered, and he ended up leaving that company in less than a year.
That’s not to say be disingenuous; you need to be yourself. After all, part of the reason you were hired is that you were a fit for the culture of the company. But be aware, what you share can have an impact on your career.