Interview with Justine Negri on 4 Aces Masterclass

4 Aces Masterclass Series

Last February, John Fitzgerald wrote a blog called “4 Aces Hold the Key for the Future of Work” which looked at the new rules to succeed in the New World of Work. It received a huge reaction and prompted Bank of Ireland to ask how the concept could be brought to life for their employees.

Here, Justine Negri tells us how Harmonics developed a two page blog into a Masterclass Series which was rolled out to all Bank of Ireland manufacturing employees across Ireland and the UK over a couple of weeks.

 Q. John’s blog focused on four key criteria he believed were necessary to succeed in the Future World of Work. Why do you think there was so much interest in this concept?

Justine: In the Masterclass, I highlight how the traditional and rather predictable career model of the past is no longer relevant in today’s rapidly changing world of work. In the traditional model, you graduated from college and through hard work and loyalty alone you could progress up the corporate career ladder. But there’s a new model in town, the self-directed career management model, which implies that the onus is now on you to proactively develop and manage your own career.

Career development and career progression is showing up on Employee Engagement surveys worldwide as being of huge interest to employees. The world of work is being disrupted and organisational change is happening at an exponential rate. Because this model is relatively new, employees want tools, tips and techniques to stay ahead and succeed in this rapidly changing world of work.


Q. How did you go about developing the concept into a 45 minute Masterclass?

Justine:  I’ve been working in the career management space for over 15 years now and I’ve been fortunate enough to work with individuals from many different cultures and levels in an Organisation from graduate to CEO level. I’ve also had the opportunity to meet hundreds of Bank of Ireland employees over the past 3 years through the facilitation of the My Career Best workshop, coaching or the implementation of the online career management portal. To make this Masterclass as relevant and practical as possible to Bank of Ireland employees, I tuned into the pulse of emerging themes, needs and wants that I’ve been hearing over the past 3 years so that all participants were leaving with tangible and applicable insights and takeaways.

I introduced participants to the key ingredient that I genuinely believe, if applied correctly, can help us all advance in our careers and that is curiosity. This formed the main component throughout the talk and helped bind the 4 Aces – Awareness of Self, Awareness of the Environment, Adaptability and Anticipation – in a fun, engaging and insightful way.

I also wanted to make sure that everyone left with key learnings that they could apply immediately, so each participant received their own deck of 4 Aces career cards to take away. Each of the 4 Aces has a deeper meaning and will serve as a navigational point to guide them at any stage in their future career journey. The 4 Aces cards, with provocative coaching questions, offer a rich takeaway they can keep in their side locker or wallet to help them prepare for future career planning, performance, interview or career conversations.

Q. What kind of feedback have you received to the Masterclass Series?

Justine: The feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. I met approximately 1,700 people across Ireland and the UK over the past couple of weeks and the general consensus of praise has been the practical nature of the talk. Numerous people mentioned how they could really identify with the challenges, opportunities and expectations that this self-directed career management model presents and how tangible the 4 Aces are in helping them to plan and prepare for their future career. Participants also worked on live examples during the talk so they got a chance to be truly immersed into this new concept and experience the 4 Aces for themselves.

Q. Do you expect to be delivering this Masterclass again?

Justine: Yes. At Harmonics we are constantly researching the future of work and gathering data from the various Organisations we work with by adapting any masterclass or workshop to ensure it is relevant for every client we work with. This is a new model and it’s here to stay for now, so it’s important for employees to be aware of how they can take control, navigate and stay ahead in this rapidly changing world of work.

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