Braving the New World of Work: Are You Ready?

Braving the New World of Work: Are You Ready?

By: Tracey Bessellieu

Note: Tracey Bessellieu attended COMTO (Conference of Minority Transportation Officials) National Training & Meeting Conference, July 11 – 14, 2015 in Boston, MA. These are her notes of the conference.

Boston, MA (July 11, 2015) – Our young people have seen an incredible year of expressions of their value in America. From Ferguson to Charlotte, we have seen tragedies that caused us to re-examine our values and the values of our leaders. These values have also influenced how we make decisions in the workplace. When we make decisions, we gravitate towards what makes us comfortable and what feels familiar to us. Rarely do we have facts and true knowledge of what matters, which presents us decisions that are filled with unconscious bias. Unconscious bias is something that is real. We all have it. Unfortunately, these types of decision may cause young professionals their career path since “working harder” may not always translate to “getting a promotion”.

It has caused me to rethink my message to young professionals when seeking opportunities. “Work harder” to get your rewards is still the mantra of most leadership, but I also want to plant additional seeds of wisdom: especially to develop the skill of being an “intrapreneur” (i.e. developing your own brand) that is valuable and marketable until you become an entrepreneur. By doing that, you will create a legacy that is unshakable.

I asked several leaders today what their thoughts were on the competencies emerging leaders will need in the new world of work and their words of advice for them.


Here is a list of their thoughts:

  • Learn how to Manage Ambiguity – being flexible and resilient
  • Develop a plan for your career that is above and beyond the requirements as your personal differentiator
  • Be ready to manage the headwinds – change is constant, are you prepared?
  • Show Passion for your thoughts and ideas – be vested in what you do
  • Know the difference between being a leader and a manager; both are critical but require different focus
  • Teamwork and collaboration – no one can do it alone
  • Effective communication – especially the willingness to listen
  • Be genuinely curious about ideas and people
  • Be persistent and innovative problem solvers
  • Make sure to have a mentor, a coach and a sponsor; all three are critically important
  • Develop confidence and centeredness
  • Be a “go to” person in the world of work
  • Have the ability to be a critical thinker
  • Understand that Leaders are continual learners 
  • Always go above and beyond of what is asked
  • Have unwavering integrity and values
  • Give back by reaching out and helping someone now, no matter where you are in your career

These soft skills are necessary for success in the new world of work.

Are you ready?