The UK public transport industry is a central part of the country’s social fabric. Every year, billions of journeys – around eight billion a year, in fact, are made via public transport, whether for work, leisure or to socialise with friends and family.

If you’re in an executive-level role and you’re looking for a new challenge in a new industry, you could hardly choose a more important one than the public transport sector. The industry plays a pivotal role in keeping the country moving – by bus, coach, tram and train.

Public transport, therefore, offers a range of compelling reasons for executives who work in other industries and are looking for a change of scene to consider it. In this post, we’ll discuss several of the most important reasons why you should consider a leadership-level career in public transport.

 

Public service

One of the most important reasons to take up a leadership-level career in the public transport sector is that it offers you the opportunity to make a genuinely useful contribution to  society. The industry is imbued with a genuine public service ethos, more so than many other sectors.

Public transport is central to the functioning of our society and economy. Every day, people across the UK use buses, trains and other methods of public transportation to travel to work, to the shops, or to simply enjoy recreational activities.

The sector therefore facilitates economic, social and cultural exchanges of all kinds. It also enables people to access essential services and carry out vital everyday activities. For executives joining the industry, the knowledge that their work serves a genuine social purpose can be hugely satisfying.

 

Continual challenges

The public transport sector is going through a critical period at the moment. With the issue of environmental sustainability and curbing carbon emissions growing ever more pressing, it’s vital that as a society, we encourage more people to ditch the car and take public transport instead.

Obviously, this requires substantial investment and an increase in capacity to make public transport a viable option for more people. For any executive-level candidate seeking a new challenge, this is a major one – and one with a direct bearing on our ability to help avert the worst of climate change.

The recent decision to cancel the planned HS2 leg from Birmingham was undoubtedly a setback, but there is mounting pressure for investment in regional rail across the North and Midlands in particular. Adept, visionary leadership is therefore sorely needed to help the transport sector rise to the challenges it faces.

 

Personal growth and development

A career at executive level isn’t just about money or status, as important as these no doubt are for many people. To be truly fulfilling and satisfying, it also has to offer the prospect of continual personal growth and development; new goals to strive for, new achievements to celebrate.

This is something that a leadershiplevel career in public transport can offer in spades. Whether it involves leading new projects, tackling the industry’s growing skills shortage or addressing which is vital to ensuring its future – there’s no shortage of challenges to get your teeth into.

Because the public transport sector is so important to the UK’s economy and society more broadly, taking on a career in the industry provides the chance to put your skill set to the test, while making a tangible contribution to the good and improving the everyday lives of passengers.

 

Stability and resilience

For all the challenges currently facing the UK’s public transport sector, it is important to note that it offers a kind of long-term stability that isn’t found in many other industries. This is because, quite simply, people will always need public transport – all the more so, in fact, in the years ahead.

Executives looking for an industry where they can make a valuable contribution over the long term should, therefore, consider a career in transport. The sector is only likely to grow in centrality and importance as passenger numbers continue to rebound from the pandemic.

Of course, the landscape in the transport sector will continue to be affected by changing political priorities and challenges with regard to funding and recruitment. Nonetheless, it remains reliably resilient and it does offer a secure long-term future.

 

How to make the transition

Moving to the public transport sector from another industry is a challenging but rewarding and fruitful process. There are, however, certain points which leadership-level candidates should consider when they come to make the transition.

In particular, they must be able to demonstrate a genuine interest and understanding of the problems the industry faces and offer concrete solutions to address them. The transport sector faces a unique set of challenges, and an appreciation of these is crucial.

The public transport sector is also subject to a distinctive regulatory framework, substantially different to that of other industries and professions. Executive-level candidates must immerse themselves in these regulations to ensure that their strategies and solutions comply with them.

Another vital skill is the ability to negotiate with diverse stakeholders. A leadership-level career in transport will involve dialogue with various groups, including passengers’ representatives, trade unions and government bodies. An ability to foster open communication is therefore essential, as is being a skilled diplomat.

 

For more than a decade, Intuitive has been connecting talented leadership-level candidates with forward-thinking employers in the UK public transport sector – including bus, coach and rail. Contact us today at say-hello@intuitiverecruitment.com to discuss what we can do to help you get your career firmly on the right track.

WE would love to get to know you!

Please do give us a call, drop us a message or follow us on Twitter & Linkedin!

Related blogs

Success Stories - Martijn Gilbert
Read more Read more
Video: Success Stories – Martijn Gilbert

Our team works with a host of leading employers in the bus industry, placing dynamic leadership talent into executive level roles.

why rail needs interim leaders
Read more Read more
Why UK Rail Needs Interim Executives

There is growing demand for interim leaders in the UK rail sector – here are some of the main reasons why – and how you can get ahead.

Read more Read more
Intuitive On The Move!

The Intuitive team has been out and about, mixing with transport industry leaders, and keeping our ears close to the ground for the latest developments.

Read more Read more
What UK Rail can do for Social Mobility

What should UK rail be doing to support those from underrepresented and underprivileged backgrounds as they try to make their mark on the industry?

Read more Read more
Creating a Friendly Workplace Culture for Neurodivergent Individuals in UK Transport

Being neurodivergent-inclusive brings benefits both to employee wellbeing and your business. But how do you create a neurodivergent-friendly workplace?

Read more Read more
Seven Ways Interim Managers Could Boost Your Business

Recruiting interim candidates is a good way of bringing in specialist expertise, offering flexibility and a diverse breadth of experience as well as cost-effectiveness.

Unconscious bias against neurodiversity in recruitment
Read more Read more
Assessing Your Recruitment Process for Neurodiversity Bias

As with any other employee, new executives need support as they adjust to their new role so that they can perform to their full potential. But how long is long enough?

How long should executive onboarding last
Read more Read more
How Long Should Executive Onboarding Last?

As with any other employee, new executives need support as they adjust to their new role so that they can perform to their full potential. But how long is long enough?

Read more Read more
Key Challenges for the UK Bus and Coach Industry – and the Leadership it Needs

We take a close look at the biggest challenges facing the bus sector and how they might be addressed moving forward.

promoting yourself as an interim executive
Read more Read more
Promoting Yourself as an Interim

To be an effective interim executive, you need a particular skill set that equips you for the challenges you’re likely to encounter. Here’s what to develop – and to promote.

Considerations to make before committing to your next career move
Read more Read more
What You Need to Consider Before Making Your Next Career Move

Before committing a big career move, there’s a lot you need to think about. Here’s what you should consider before taking on a new role.

Read more Read more
Infographic: How Intuitive Made a Difference in 2023

We did so much in 2023, so we’ve created an infographic of some of our biggest achievements this year!

Executive job interview tips
Read more Read more
Tips for Acing Your Next Executive Job Interview

if you’re on the lookout for a new executive role – whether it’s your first job at this level or you already have some senior-level experience – hare some top tips to bear in mind.

bus industry diversity
Read more Read more
Driving Change in the UK Bus Industry: Why Diversity Matters

Taking a closer look at why it’s so vital that organisations in the bus and coach sector take diversity seriously and act accordingly.

Bus Sector
Read more Read more
Video: A Force for Change in the Bus Sector

Our team works with a host of leading employers in the bus industry, placing dynamic leadership talent into executive level roles.

ed&i in the UK bus sector
Read more Read more
ED&I In The UK Bus Industry: The Scale Of The Challenge

Buses have long been the site of struggles for civil rights and equality, and, for all its progress, the UK bus industry has a way to go.

executive onboarding blog
Read more Read more
How To Keep Executive Onboarding On Track

Between 50% and 70% of executives fail within 18 months of starting a new role. So what can be done to ensure executives thrive and prosper?

interview style pros and cons
Read more Read more
Conducting a Successful Interview: Pros and Cons of Different Interview Styles 

Recruiting for executive roles is never an easy business, but choosing the right interview format for the position and your organisation can make it easier.

executive onboarding
Read more Read more
New Candidate Expectations for Executive Onboarding

New senior-level recruits have very different needs from their colleagues. Here’s how to ensure your executive onboarding process works.

The UK rail skills shortage 2023
Read more Read more
Infographic: The UK Rail Skills Shortage

Our infographic lays bare the scale of the skills shortage in UK rail, its effects on the industry, and how recruiters can help to address the skills gap.

impact statement
Read more Read more
Our Impact Statement

Through our commitment to ED&I, we’ve spent the last decade working to make transport more diverse – and more reflective of the public it serves.

Read more Read more
Growing Senior Transport Roles to Consider in Recruitment Plans

We detail the growing c-suite positions you should account for in your recruitment strategies or may want to pursue as a leadership candidate.

Read more Read more
Knowing if and When Interim Leadership Is Right for You

For many senior professionals, interim management is the most rewarding career path imaginable – but contract work isn’t for everyone.

Read more Read more
CV Rules and Best Practices for Senior Leaders

How you can take your CV from a tell-all list to a marketing tool that increases your chance of securing an interview.

Read more Read more
Video: Nina Reflects on 10 Years of Intuitive

Founder and Director Nina Lockwood reflects on the last ten years of Intuitive and shares her thoughts on recruitment and the transport industry.

Celebrating ten years of Intuitive Recruitment
Read more Read more
Video: Ten Years of Intuitive

Intuitive’s first decade has been magical. Here are the highlights, from bringing new faces into the sector to hosting a hit podcast and winning Executive Recruitment Agency of the Year.

Intuitive 2022 Year in Review
Read more Read more
Video: Our 2022 Wrap Up

2022 has certainly been a fantastic year for Intuitive. So to celebrate, we’ve packed our highlights into a short wrap-up video.

Read more Read more
Infographic: Sector Switching – How to Figure out the Right Fit?

Could a different sector be a better fit for your career priorities and progression goals? This 7-step plan can help you decide.

Read more Read more
Get what you need from Interviews Without being Script-Bound

We share six steps for developing an interview approach that gets what you need from leadership candidate interviews, without relying on a script.

Read more Read more
Adapting Your Interview Style: Part 2 – In-Person Interviews

In-person interviews are far more fluid than they used to be – especially for senior leaders. Here are four ways to adapt your interview style for senior leadership positions.

Read more Read more
Adapting Your Interview Style: Part 1 – Video

As video interviews have grown, so have expectations of how candidates use virtual tools. Here’s how to adapt your interview style for virtual spaces.

Read more Read more
Making LinkedIn an Irreplaceable Career Progression Tool

We share our tried-and-true seven-step strategy for making LinkedIn an irreplaceable tool in your career progression journey.

Read more Read more
Hallmarks of Ads that Attract the Strongest Candidates

Discover four fundamental features of senior leadership job adverts that attract the strongest Transport candidates.

Read more Read more
Building an Employer Value Proposition That Evolves with Candidate Expectations

While you can’t predict what’s to come, adjusting your strategic approach with an evolving EVP can ensure it always delivers what matters.

Read more Read more
Faster Career Progression by Embracing Positive Thinking

A positive attitude can be a real divider when it comes to professional success and can improve confidence, relationships and the speed at which you achieve your goals.

Read more Read more
Building a Personal Brand That’s Instantly Memorable

How do you curate a personal brand that’s true to you but still has career progression prowess?

Read more Read more
How To Have Authentic Conversations With Candidates

Authentic conversations help uncover the real person behind an impressive CV, and are paramount to matching the right candidate with the right enterprise.

Read more Read more
Weighing Up A New Role: Three Questions To Ask

We share three fantastic questions that every transport leadership candidate should ask during the interview process. Revealing answers are guaranteed!

Read more Read more
Intuitive proudly announce our CPT membership

Intuitive will be teaming up with the CPT to connect bus and coach organisations with exceptional leadership professionals.

leadership potential
Read more Read more
Ways to Identify Leadership Potential Outside Your Sector

How can your transport organisation tap into cross-sectoral talent and identify leadership potential? We explore strategies for finding talent and 5 specific characteristics to look for.

transport sector
Read more Read more
How Transport Can Be a Successful Force for Change

Why connecting with clients with candidates from outside of the transport sector is important and how it can benefit your organisation. We share 4 interesting advantages.

Read more Read more
Reverse Mentoring: Why it’s Important to the Transport Sector

Reverse mentoring empowers less senior, younger, or more unconventional employees to share their knowledge and experience with more senior, conventional, and oftentimes older colleagues.

Read more Read more
How to Challenge Unconscious Bias in the Recruitment Process

Unconscious bias has been associated with career challenges for those from diverse backgrounds, and when left unchecked, can affect workplace inclusivity.

Read more Read more
Why Your EVP will Turn the Tide on Recruitment Challenges

Putting your employer value proposition at the heart of your recruitment strategy can set you up for long and short term success.

Read more Read more
4 Ways to Have a Positive Mindset in Your Role

In the workplace and as a leader, a positive mindset is important not just for job satisfaction, but for being effective and driving change.

Read more Read more
Unveiling the 90 Day Accelerator Programme

Nina and Founder and Director of Metisblue Laurent Bouvier introduce the exclusive and focused 90 Day Accelerator Programme.

Blog Title Card: Nina on Inspirational Women in Recruitment
Read more Read more
Hear Nina on the Inspirational Women in Recruitment Podcast

Nina recently featured on the Inspirational Women in Recruitment podcast, revealing her approach to attracting and engaging talent and more.

Skills for the transport sector
Read more Read more
How to Match Transport Candidates Beyond the Job Description

Whether recruiting as an internal team or with a Talent Consultancy, our tips can help you match high-level roles with the best in transport.

Blog Title Card: In-Demand Skills for Transport
Read more Read more
5 Key Transferable and Desirable Skills for the Transport Sector

Discover the top five in-demand transferable skills relevant to high-level roles in the transport sector, based on feedback from our clients.