What is professional?
According to a dictionary, to be professional is to be engaged in an activity as one’s main paid occupation rather than a pastime.
What is unprofessional?
Looking at the same computer dictionary, to be unprofessional is to be below the standards expected in a particular profession.
What the…? Being unprofessional is about not meeting expectations while being professional is doing the things related to our paid occupation. This is almost a double standard as our profession may cause us to act in a way others think as unprofessional as it doesn’t meet their expectations for behavior. Why do we excuse certain behaviors but oppose the same action from others? It happens all the time in the places we work. Why is that?
From the biz you perspective, it comes down to not knowing your own biz. There’s a difference between behaving in a way expressing our personal values and behaving in a way expressing the values of others. We allow others to manipulate our approach to things. Often we get caught up in doing the things expected of us instead of simply acting out of our own valuation of the world around and within us. We accept the philosophy and dogma of others instead of understanding our own approach to life (i.e. our personal philosophy). We have a choice ever moment to uphold the integrity of our own spirit and experience or allow external forces to pull us this way or that. Managing the biz of you not only includes understanding what’s important to us but also maintaining our integrity through our decisions and actions even if that does not meet the expectations of those in our lives. A true friend and professional will accept our viewpoints and integrate it into the decisions and actions taken in group settings like our family, work and careers.
Be an example of a professional by upholding the values of yourself and the profession you choose everyday by going into work.