Professionalism is the way you conduct yourself in your business environment or representing your business. As the business world becomes more and more causal, is professionalism in jeopardy of disappearing? Or is there a place for professionalism and the current more “laid-back” work style to co-exist? There are a few different areas in which professionalism can be focused.
Many companies have opted to change their dress codes from business formal to business casual. It all depends on if you are a client-facing company or rarely have clients in the office. On days a client may be coming to the office, it’s probably best to step up the dress code to a more formal approach. This might not always be the case if you work with individuals that do not dress formally for their jobs (i.e., Painting Company owners, farmers, construction, and more). In this case, the client might feel underdressed in such a formal setting. Know your clients and adjust attire accordingly.
How Conflict is Handled
Staying calm during a disagreement or conflict can be an essential tool in showing professionalism. If you fly off the handle and make a huge scene, you will lose respect and possibly your job. Stay professional and handle situations with a cool head and open mind.
How you conduct yourself is number 1 in being professional. Take responsibility for your work. Be accountable when a mistake is made. As we learned as children, honesty is always the best policy. Being respectful will help you gain respect. Whether your company is more on the casual side or more formal, these are ALWAYS ways in which your should behave. It shows professionalism, but more importantly, it shows integrity.
When it comes to communication, certain areas have become more relaxed. Less professionalism is shown when writing emails, and more casual, friendly conversations have become the norm. While this may seem “less professional,” it can be an excellent way to keep stress down when discussing business, projects, deadlines, and more. Keep the message business-focused, and don’t get too friendly or off-topic, and you’ll be successful in communicating.
The world becoming more casual doesn’t have to be the end of professionalism. There are ways to make things more relaxed while still keeping business first. Hopefully, this new shift will be the perfect balance of professionalism and a more relaxed atmosphere.