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Ethical Characteristics of Professionalism

Before exploring ethical management let's examine ethical professionalism
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Most people have an inkling about what a profession is or what being a professional person might entail. Historically, to profess was a public declaration or vow, normally associated with religious orders. By the 16th century, it was associated with the commitment to learn pursuits of divinity, law, medicine, and the military. Today, it broadly covers a commitment to serve the public where there is a special relationship to the marketplace, but upholds moral ideals or special standards for carrying out occupational work that is non-trading or business-orientated. Let’s take a look at this topic in more detail now. Nowadays, the term professional gets used in a variety of situations and is in some cases misused.
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A profession is formed when a group of individuals who pursue the same occupation organize themselves in a morally permissible way or work to support a moral idea or outcome. The members of the profession set out and follow special standards for carrying out the occupational work. What makes the professional different is not their level of ordinary morality, but one that goes beyond the ordinary level of morality that is covered by law or the marketplace. These standards are morally binding and may have limited legal background, but members who have professed have declared publicly that they’ll be bound by the rules and codes of the profession.
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The penalty for violation is removal from the profession and therefore the inability to continue their work publicly since they brought the profession into disrepute. Membership is a collegiate experience and uses certification to demonstrate competence and knowledge. Judgement is based upon occupational tasks and is guided by relevant professional standards. Through acceptance to work in a morally permissible way based on a code of ethics, the individual accepts these obligations through membership. Professional codes of ethics are fundamentally the same in most professions that have variations that befit their occupational group. The code prescribes how professionals must conduct themselves and it’s designed to protect them from pressures or influences from outside the profession in order to maintain their professional standing and ethical behavior.
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In effect, the code requires conformity to obligations, tradition, societal expectations, contracts, laws, and the rules of what is termed ordinary morality. The working relationship with employers, clients or customers and other professionals is guided by the codes of conduct and ethics. This maintains the profession collectively and demonstrates their responsibility to the general public. Stepping outside the professions codes of conduct and ethical conduct may constitute negligence and a failure to meet the required levels of professional standards and care. There will be times when these determinations are challenged, which produces tension that must be resolved by the profession as a whole. Let’s now recap on what we’ve learned about professionalism. In this session, we’ve explored what a professional really is.
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We’ve seen that sometimes the word is used incorrectly, but we all have a general understanding of when someone is behaving professionally. A profession is formed when a group of individuals who pursue the same occupation organize themselves in a morally permissible way or work to support a moral idea or outcome. The members set out and follow special standards for carrying out their occupational work. Individuals have publicly declared their allegiance and desire to uphold a code of conduct and maintain ethical standards. Here are five key points. One, professional comes from the word profess.
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Two, a profession occurs when a group of individuals who pursue the same occupation organize themselves in a morally permissible way or work to support a moral idea or outcome. Three, often misused, we generally understand the meaning and context of being professional. Four, judgement is based upon occupational tasks and is guided by relevant professional standards. Five, the code is prescriptive in how professionals conduct themselves.

Before exploring the term ethical management, let’s have a look at ethical professionalism. This video from the University of Law Business School is about the Ethical Characteristics of Professionalism.

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Ethical Management and Decision Making

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