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What does it mean to be a professional?

Watch this video in which we ask members of the public what the word ‘professional’ means to them.
SPEAKER 1: To be a professional? Someone you can rely on.
Yeah, go on.
SPEAKER 2: I guess like having some skills, some specific skills for example.
SPEAKER 1: And you have to be precise.
SPEAKER 3: So I’d say bringing some professional attitude to your job, be serious about your responsibilities. So that’s the basis of being a professional.
SPEAKER 4: Follow the code of practice for your profession.
SPEAKER 5: Qualified. Yeah.
SPEAKER 6: Someone who’s highly regarded, like say. Probably a lot of work much as the same as a lawyer, a lot of caseload of work.
SPEAKER 7: In appearance or how they look, how they come across. So it’s basically it’s just their demeanor. How they come across, how they approach people, how they deal with their work. So work ethics. I mean, everything that they do. So I think someone who’s professional, but an all-arounder, so they’re approachable, friendly.
SPEAKER 8: Somebody who– who’s got a degree and–
SPEAKER 9: No, because we’re professionals [INTERPOSING VOICES]
SPEAKER 8: Oh, well we are professionals.
SPEAKER 9: We are professionals, but in administration.
SPEAKER 10: To be someone who can puts aside personal opinion differences and to be able to get on with a job in a way that benefits the most people.
SPEAKER 11: Someone who obviously knows the job, knows what they’re doing. From there is obviously able to help someone as best they can with that knowledge and that experience. Yeah.
SPEAKER 12: Very similar. Yeah, just someone who knows what they’re doing really. Like, been on the job a long time. Obviously qualified or experienced to do the job.
SPEAKER 13: I think it means to be a professional is to maybe stand out in your field.
SPEAKER 14: Hard working and driven.
SPEAKER 15: I think it’s a difference in approach. I mean, the sort of difference between lawyers having clients rather than customers and it’s not about the money. It’s about a service which you couldn’t do yourself. It’s not saving time, like going to a restaurant. There is no hope of you understanding the law. Any professional is something that a person could never do themselves. And I think there needs to be sort of respect for that. So I think that’s the difference between professionals in a way.
SPEAKER 16: Professional? To be good at what you do. It doesn’t matter what you do, but you’re very good at.
SPEAKER 17: A professional? To be a professional is you need to study courses like engineering, medicine, aeronautic engineering, technology. Then you’ll be able to be a professional in your own field of study. And you’ll be able to something special, something great in that field of study.
SPEAKER 18: Be successful.
SPEAKER 19: Organized.
SPEAKER 17: To be a professional, you have to be talented, you have to be creative, you have to know exactly what you need to produce something special, something special that will give humanity an added advantage so that you assist your fellow human beings.
SPEAKER 19: Doctors. Professors.
SPEAKER 18: People who have their own offices.
SPEAKER 19: Or their own company. Yeah.
SPEAKER 20: I think it probably means that you have a job with a sort of professional code like doctors and lawyers and then you are expected to be [INAUDIBLE] that’s such of an accordance so you have expert knowledge in a particular area and you have to be highly in accordance with your professional [INAUDIBLE] I guess.
SPEAKER 18: Smart. Like they dress well.
SPEAKER 19: Yes. Appearance wise, really good.
SPEAKER 20: Well I guess you wouldn’t expect to see a JP drunk on the floor in your local pub. That kind of thing.
Watch this video in which we ask members of the public what the word ‘professional’ means to them. See if you agree with what those on the screen are saying, and try to connect the video with what we have just learned about lawyers in England and Wales and about professionalism.
Reflect on any new information or ideas and share your thoughts with other learners in the comments area.
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Corporate Lawyers: Ethics, Regulation and Purpose

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