Professionalism is the overall work conduct, behavior, and attitude towards work and the set goals. Being professional simply carries an air of work demand divided by work delivery. In an office space where employees form bonds and friendships, it is quite easy to slip from professionalism into one’s personal space which is often the case.
Characteristics of Professionalism
The act of being professional is seen not heard as it affects work delivery at the place of assignment. Some of the most visible traits of this act are;
- Physical Appearance: employees and workers are required to appear at work looking smart and put together as it shows responsibility and good hygiene in their past.
- Reliability: to be reliable means to be responsible with or without supervision. This shows the level of commitment an employee puts into his or her work.
- Punctuality: This is an important factor in work delivery. It helps the employee finish the task given and plan for the next. Punctuality also takes away every chance of tardiness and laziness.
- Good communication: Being a pro at your workplace signifies and builds a good working environment with team members or predecessors in a place of delivery. This shows how much time and effort is spent in getting to know co-workers and boss’ habits and strengths.
- Organization: an organized employee is a reliable employee. The organization helps set the pace for a working hour, relieving stress and meeting deadlines. Also, being organized can be seen in how a workspace is formed; appointments, desk settings, briefcase arrangement, and all.
- Accountability: Being accountable shows responsibility and honor as employees are expected to report daily activities, goals achieved, work done, mistakes made, and how they were resolved.
- Poise: composure at work matters a lot as an organization with more than two employees is a combination of the characters, lifestyle, and ethics of each of the employees
Importance of Professionalism at work
Being professional requires discipline and ethical values placed on your work. The role of professionalism is synonymous with its reasons.
- It sets boundaries: being too friendly with co-workers or employees takes away the element of respect and surprise. These can cause rifts and office disputes.
- It increases work productivity: the place of focus brings about quick and reliable work as there may not/isn’t time for idleness.
- It improves the efficiency of delivery: organization in the office allows designation of duties where each member takes his/her task seriously.
- It maintains work hierarchy: for things to run smoothly, with or without considering any sort of friendship at the workplace, the importance of hierarchy cannot be over-emphasized as this is crucial for a workflow.
- Deadlines are met: with professionalism, every staff member mounts their posts dutifully, ensuring that the goal for the day, week, month, or year is achieved.
- Employees learn more: due to the demand for work delivery, employees who lack a certain skill can be taught by the upper hands. This is a bonus in any organization.
5 key factors to professionalism at work
To be professional, appearance and character are well looked into.
- Dress professionally: one’s dressing is an identification for what it represented which is key in the industry you find yourself in. A banker dresses like one, a movie director dresses as he should and a Doctor does the same.
Having a professional look for you irrespective of the type of job or role commands attention and consideration at the workplace. Dressing appropriately makes a good impression, it also means you take your job seriously, you represent your company, and show confidence.
- Be accountable: this means that every member of the workforce has designated duties that require goal achievement. Hence, the need to be accountable for the task handed over to you. This helps to measure your strengths and weaknesses.
Accountability helps to improve work performance, encourages progress, builds confidence, and improves work communication and connection. By being accountable, you have to pay attention to details, acknowledge mistakes and fix them, assist colleagues, be proactive and be willing to accept criticism.
- Understand your work environment: to be able to understand your work environment, you have to understand the different departments and the behavioral practices of the members. This helps you as an employee or worker to communicate better, manage conflicts and settle disputes.
To completely grasp the work ethics of the organization, watch how people relate, observe the surroundings, interact and talk to colleagues while getting proper information. All these assist the process of professionalism.
- Mind your business: having observed the surroundings and understanding how an organization works, it is very important to note that minding one’s business helps in achieving more and brewing productivity in the office.
To achieve this, learn to stay out of other people’s business, whether personal or not, listen without judging or trying to fix it, take responsibility for matters that concern you, and practice that act of self-awareness. These practices relieve work stress and take out any excess garbage.
- Improve on yourself: this can be demanding as you have to focus on work delivery and self-worth. Self-improvement can be achieved in the following ways:
- Doing the right thing at the right time
- Avoid leaving things undone
- Be open to learning new things
- Attend seminars and workshops
- Prioritize your self
- Learn something new every day
- Make use of online tools
Exercise for employees in the Workplace
There are no specific guidelines or rules for maintaining such conduct in the workplace. However, an unspoken set of rules and regulations must be adhered to. It’s an invisible work Bible that states the obvious. Here are some questions to ask yourself as an employee, testing your value towards work.
As a worker,
- Are you always punctual? If No, why?
- Do you have friends at work? If Yes or No, are they vital for your work delivery?
- What are the most important things to you at work?
- What makes you the best at your job?
- Do you mind your business?
These are questions that should be asked often as attaining professionalism requires a conscious effort. Employers are not exempted from this exercise because they interact with different personalities in their organizations. Although they have the right to interfere in their workers’ lives as their attitude to work affects the growth of their business. A happy worker is a better worker. A professional worker is the best worker.