Being called a “professional” is usually taken as a compliment. It’s a strong word for a lot of people, evoking feelings of admiration, respect and trust when it’s directed at someone.
We often look up to people who work in “the professions” – fields such as medicine, law and academia. We give those people fancy name prefixes such as “Dr.” or “Prof.” Their expertise is typically quite valued, and a lot of the time these people carry themselves in very confident, assured ways. They show up in powerful ways, and as a product of this they tend to create meaningful results wherever they go.
Whether you’re a professional by title or not, being professional is something that anyone can achieve, regardless of the field they work in. It’s a desirable characteristic, but what’s really behind this attribute is often misunderstood. Here’s a dive into what professionalism really entails.
Lisa Petkovsek has a lot of letters after her name, especially for someone her age. She was building a strong career in a well-regarded and lucrative field. In the end, it wasn’t enough to make her stay.
Despite going down a long, challenging academic and professional path, she discovered that life was just too short to be unhappy at work. A couple of years ago, Lisa came to a stunning realization: what she really wanted to do was become a career coach. This massive shift would lead her to exchanging the world of money and numbers for that of personal growth, self-discovery, and helping others create careers they could be truly satisfied with.
From one moment to the next, we are constantly changing and evolving how we are existing in the world. What we think about, how we feel, and the things we say and do: all of these aspects of us are constantly in flux. Our persona – what others see in us – is a reflection of what’s taking place in our inner world.
Please note that this post contains my interpretation of the copyrighted work of Bruce D Schneider and the Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching (iPEC).
How often do you consciously think about how you are “showing up” in the world? How much of your awareness of the world is directed at yourself?
Why is this even important in the first place?
Emotional intelligence is a term that is widely thrown around in business and leadership circles. It has been described as a combination of self-awareness, with the ability to regulate our emotions as well as the emotinos of those around us. A person with great emotional intelligence is likely to have much more success in maximizing their work and personal relationships, as well as in resolving conflicts between two or more parties.
The Harvard Business Review even went as far as to say that emotional intelligence is twice as important as IQ and technical skills “for jobs at all levels.”