In a weak economy with a high unemployment rate, many details of one’s workplace behavior become increasingly important when cuts must be made. If you are concerned about your job security, then one thing you can do is to work on increasing your professionalism in the workplace. If you manage employees that you are worried about losing, then you may also want to emphasize to them the importance of professionalism in today’s economic climate.
What does professionalism really mean? It goes beyond wearing a suit and tie or remembering to put on pantyhose under your high heels. Professionalism in the workplace really means fulfilling all of your job responsibilities in a professional manner.
5 Ways to Increase Your Professionalism in the Workplace
1. Be Punctual
If you want to be taken seriously in your workplace, it is best if you don’t rush in late each day, with papers flying out of your briefcase in your wake. Arriving on time and in an organized, orderly fashion makes a good impression each day on the employees you manage, your colleagues in management, and your superiors. If you are punctual (or even early), you also have time to greet your fellow employees in a calm, cheerful manner as you enter the building and make your way to the desk.
2. Follow Through
When you receive an assignment, take responsibility for its success. Be certain to plan ahead in order to complete your work in a timely fashion. If you delegate parts of the assignment to others, be certain to follow up with them regularly rather than simply assuming that they are doing what needs to be done. Then simply do what you need to do to get the job done.
3. Dress Appropriately
Make sure that your attire each day is in line with the established company dress code. If you aren’t sure about a particular outfit, look in the mirror and think about how your appearance reflects your own performance as well as the image of the company as a whole. Traditional wisdom emphasizes the importance of professionalism and encourages employees to actually dress for the job you want to have rather than the one you currently have, which usually means dressing in a slightly more formal manner than your current position necessitates.
4. Maintain Work-Life Balance
You can demonstrate your professionalism in the workplace by maintaining your work-life balance. This means limiting personal calls at work and work calls at home. This means solving your personal problems during non-working hours. This means keeping healthy and figuring out how to best focus on the business at hand from 9 to 5 – at least most of the time.
5. Go Above and Beyond
If you really want to stand out as a professional, then consider all of these prior steps. Next, figure out how you can excel in your job and go beyond the basic duties. If you stand out as a person who cares deeply about their work and performs with excellence, then you are likely to increase your job security.