By Dr. Laura Hills, President, Blue Pencil Institute (www.bluepencilinstitute.com)
The following characteristics relate to professionalism in the workplace. Answer these questions to see if you exhibit a high degree of professionalism. Answer yes if you demonstrate these characteristics or behaviors at least 90% of the time.
1. Do you have all the skills required to be successful at your job? If not, are you in the process of learning them?
2. Do you communicate well with others?
3. Do your managers deem your behavior to be professional? Does your manager approve of your attire, the hours you keep, the way you conduct yourself in general? Does he or she seem comfortable coming to you with special projects or to discuss problems or ideas?
4. Do you have a high level of integrity? Do you tell the truth at work? Do you see tasks through to completion and avoid cutting corners?
5. Do you practice the Golden Rule? A true professional treats others with respect and expects the same from them. Do you return borrowed items right away and in good order when you’re done using them?
6. Do you live up to your commitments? In any job, you agree to do certain tasks. Some tasks you must do routinely, without being asked and your employer may ask you to take on other responsibilities. A real test of your professionalism comes in your ability to meet all these commitments while upholding the standards of quality and timeliness set by your employer. Individuals with a high degree of professionalism make promises to themselves and to others about what they will and won’t do. They keep those promises.
7. Do you report to work at the agreed-upon time (or early), ready to work, and with a cooperative and positive attitude? Do you willingly pitch in during times of staffing or other crises?
8. Do you avoid conducting personal business while at work?
9. Do you take full responsibility for the results of your efforts and actions?
10. Do you continually seek self-improvement and self-awareness by looking for opportunities to enhance your professional growth?
11. Do you keep confidential information confidential?
12. Do you take pride and satisfaction in the work you do?
13. Do you participate in one or more professional organizations?