Professional values - principles and beliefs that have influence on professional behavior. They are commonly shared by members of specific profession and they determine a framework for attitudes and standards of work. Professional values support the goals acheiving through better understanding of company's mission and integrating within the organization. They are also a guidance for decision making and conflict resolution(Idid S.A. 2016, p.288-292).
Professional values are closely related to code of conduct, ethical behavior and norms for various occupation. Depending on chosen profession, there are several obligatory codes related to proper behavior and factors that should be a guide for specific group of people. The values should be demonstrated through professional relationships and practices(Rao A.B. 2009, p.7).
Common professional values
In literature there are mentioned several professional values that occur universally:
- Flexibility and Adaptability – being flexible to handle appearing issues and adapting easily to changing workplace conditions(Griffin R.W. 2009, p.508)
- Self-Motivation and Ambition – asking questions to show the interest, making sure that the job has been done correctly, feeling comfortable with assigned tasks and being motivated
- Dependable Personality – being reliable employee through providing the best quality of work, impeccable attendance and punctuality
- Honest, Ethical Behavior – working on building good company’s reputation by being honest and showing an ethical attitude
- Professional Demeanor – the right behavior including treating the customers well, manner of speaking, dressing neatly and accepting the feedbacks
- Good Work Ethic – providing ethical attitude to work and taking the responsibility for taken actions(Gray M. 2010, p.20-23)
- Continuous Learning - having a continuous learning approach and using every opportunity provided
- Teamwork – treating everybody in equal way, supporting each other and working together in order to achieve group and individuals goals(Furnham A. 2008, p.279)
Sources of professional values
We distinguish three main sources of professional values(McCuen R. 2011, p.32-33):
Parents are the number one of source when it is comes to values. They teach their children how to behave in specific situations, how to react and what it is good, what it is not. The children have their first responsibilities at home (e.g. cleaning a room) and they learn that hard work is rewarded. Being in charge of small daily things (e.g. feeding a pet) can create the dependable attitude and has a big impact of professional life. Moreover, some researches intimate that genetics have influence a person’s value system and their reactions.
Teachers at school learn the children to be punctual, complete their homework and to study hard to achieve good grades. The children in school age become time managers: they need to prioritize their task: homework, family time, other school activities and they can feel the consequences of their choices. Studying at university requires similar skills: well presented and proofread work must be submitted on time. Obligatory attendance all lectures leads to building self-discipline. Having a position of responsibility in a student society or club allows to gain budget management skills. It also gives the opportunity to chair the meetings and communicate with wider group of people. This knowledge reflects later in professional demeanor.
- Professional Environment
Almost all of big corporation companies and associations have written a set of their values or/and an ethical guidelines. They usually includes the principles like respect and equality, taking the responsibility, being trustworthy. Different workplace allows to follow by policies and procedures, adhere to dress code, give excellent customer service or learn how to promote product and protect confidentiality.
Professional values impact
The professional values of individual person can impact the business in both ways: positive and negative(Manna S. 2010, p.60).
- Relationships at work – different values of people who are dealing with each other could lead to some conflicts.
- Supporting the work – creating organization’s values in line with personal employees beliefs can energize the people to do their job better.
- Leadership style – if the leader has a lack of awareness of company values, his leadership might be inconsistent. Having knowledge of occurring beliefs and principles can help in decision making and understanding the key processes.
- Furnham A. (2008),Personality and Intelligence at Work – Exploring and explaining individual differences at work, Psychology Press, London
- Gray M., Webb S.A. (2010),Ethics and Value Perspectives in Social Work, Palgrave MacMillian, London
- Griffin R.W. (2009),Management, Texas A&M University, Texas
- Idid S.A., Arandas M. (2016),Professional Values, Ethics, and Professionalism of Public Relations Practitioners “Jurnal Komunikasi: Malaysian Journal of Communication”, no. 32
- Manna S., Chakraborti S. (2010),Values and Ethics in business and profession, PHI Learning Private Limited, New Delhi
- McCuen R., Gilroy K. (2011),Ethics and Professionalism in Engineering, Broadview Press, Canada
- Rao A.B. (2009), Business Ethics and Professional Values, Excel Books, New Delhi
Author: Christian Ferdouel