Friday, July 29, 2005

Keys to professionalism


1. Keep their emotions in check

They do not respond to difficult situations with emotions leading the way.

They are cool under fire. Remember the saying "Never let them see you

sweat?" A pro is always in control (or looks like they are) no matter what

the setting.

2. Know the answers or know where to get them

It takes a lot of guts to admit you don’t know an answer, but a professional

does not hesitate telling you they don’t know. What sets them apart is

that they follow that very question up with, "But, I’ll find out!" And they


3. Are direct in communicating with all parties

Manipulators may be successful in the short term, but when did you last

hear someone say they respected a manipulator? A pro talks straight with

all stakeholders, even when it is not pleasant. This behavior breeds trust

and you can trust a professional.

4. Listen to all input without preconceived ideas

Being open-minded allows ideas, suggestions and unsaid problems be

part of the solution. A professional knows that they don’t have all the

answers and will surround themselves with people who challenge them

and help them make the best decisions.

5. Communicate without prejudice

Each contact is important, no matter who it is from. They return calls to

a low-ranking staff member with the same courtesy they do an influential

community leader. Human beings are important; positions are not.


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