Very often when professionalism is referred to, the focus is on how we do our jobs. But there is the conduct side of professionalism that deserves equal focus. Here are some areas to enhance your credibility and integrity.
Speak responsibly: Always use appropriate language. Don’t be indiscreet. Whatever you say should be appropriate for your environment and the person you are speaking to. You have a responsibility to role model the right behavior. Don’t say things you don’t mean or have any intention of keeping. Don’t speak badly of others. Also, don’t be someone else’s garbage can by listening to their negative talk.
Don’t hide from your mistakes: Everyone makes mistakes, but what you do when they happen determines your sense of professionalism and integrity. Acknowledge your mistakes; don’t blame them on someone else or water down their impact. However, don’t beat yourself down over your mistakes. Do your best to correct them and take care not to repeat the same mistakes.
Fight fair: Always make your case properly and give others a chance to do the same. Don’t bully, engage in finger pointing or name calling to get your way because these can never be justified, no matter the reasons. Don’t belittle or put others down or tarnish their reputation by saying things they don’t have the opportunity to defend themselves on. Don’t hesitate to apologise when you are wrong.
Take time to say thank you: Make time to thank people for their help and efforts. Most jobs have their nice bits as well as drudgery and your appreciation may help someone see the impact of what they are doing. When you say thank you, explain a bit about what it is for.
Now take action: in which others/ways areas should you strengthen your conduct?