Saturday, September 8, 2012

The Importance of Professionalism

As I grow my capabilities and expand my methods of refining my knowledge, one of the things I've focused on more is professional behavior, whether it's for a 9-5 grind or for my personal projects that few might ever see. I knew this became more important to me when a consultant I worked with did nearly nothing to help me gain insight on the project I picked them, personally, for, and eventually gave me nothing but silence, even after repeated efforts to understand their situation. That month and similar instances that came afterward, felt like one of the biggest wastes of potential I've ever experienced, and in time consumed me in how utterly that person failed me in even the basic aspects I outlined for them. After it was all said and done, and I moved on to search for more voices for the project, something came to form the more I saw similar things in both myself and people around me:

No matter how talented, experienced or pretty you are, you won't get a lot done if you aren't professional about what you want to get done.

In my past, I've also been rather unprofessional in my commitments, and because of that, many projects I started on stalled out and never grew into what they could and should have become. Those experiences have let me realize what can happen if one doesn't fully commit, and over time I've worked towards becoming the kind of man that can commit to something, no matter how hard it is, how long it goes on or how little assistance I have on it. In the long run, I know this will let be far more than I can currently imagine, just as I couldn't imagine being as knowledgeable as I am today back in my high school days, when my understanding of Japan was a mile wide and an inch deep. In the same respect, I know better that as this will benefit my personal projects, I know it will benefit me, personally, and raise me far above my current station.

I mean hell, if being an unfocused, lazy punk got me this knowledge, imagine how much my finances will jump when I get my focus on.

That said, I know that I can't let people's tendencies and broken promises throw me off and make me drop whatever I'm doing to sit there and pout, for that would be the ultimate in unprofessional-ism. No matter how they may act with me, or treat our transactions, or straight up brush off our commitments, I have to maintain my stride and press onwards, because I know that if I act a fool, even if I'm not a Twitter, facebook or whatever social media is the new hotness, the eyes around me will always be on me consuming everything I do and say; if I want to create the kind of product I know I can make, I always have to put my best foot forward, no matter how that may make me feel while I'm doing it.

I mean unless your career is built around being unprofessional, then it will do nothing but come back to bite you in the ass over, and over, and over, and over.

If they reach a milestone, I will congratulate them, if they need someone to talk to, I always offer a listening ear, if they need my counsel on various matters, I always offer what my wisdom will allow; just because they sucked at working with me doesn't put them beyond receiving such basic kindness and consideration, and never will. The moment that becomes a part of my mindset, I'll know a crucial part of who I choose to be has failed and will soon lead me down a downward spiral if I don't ship up and shape up damn soon. In my estimation, the consummate professional always gives those who work with them their absolute best and make sure the end product is of the highest quality to be delivered precisely when it was promised, no matter what emotional turmoil they may be going through at the time.

This is why doctors stay those long nights at the hospital to ensure patients get the best care, even if they're practically coughing up blood when they're on the job.

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