How to Be Professional at Work

How to Be Professional at Work

If you want to get ahead with your career, then you need to learn to look and act professional at work. Results count, and you are far more likely to be promoted if your boss can imagine you in the job then if they can't. Professionalism means different things to different people, but if you have consistent habits and mannerisms that make you come across as a pro, you're going to be seen as the one to watch. 

Whether you are dressed in pajamas or you are dressed in black work pants and a blazer, you need to make sure that you are productive, efficient and ready to work so that you are seen as professional. Don't forget, looks are one thing, but professionalism is a trait, and if you are not professional in your workspace it's going to shine. So here are some of the ways that you can be professional at work.

Dress smartly.

Again, it's not just about looks, but business attire if that's your dress code is the way to go. You don't have to look like a fashion icon and you don't have to look glamorous, but you literally just have to make sure that you are dressed for the part. You want to dress like your coworkers in senior positions, so if they are wearing dressed down trousers but wearing a shirt with shoes, then go with that. If they are wearing black work pants, with boots and a shirt, then go with that.

Mind your manners.

When you answer the phone, when you deal with visitors, and when you're talking to colleagues, mind your manners. Phone etiquette is a huge part of looking and seeming professional, and the contact that you have with other people is going to define how they see you. The words that you speak convey so much on the phone, so avoid answering your phone just saying hello or sounding tired. Introduce yourself as you answer the phone.

Never be late.

It sounds like such a simple thing, but lateness is super rude in a business environment. Lateness tells people that you value your time more than you value theirs, and that doesn't bode well for you if you are late for a meeting.

Make sure that you are punctual for everything at all times, and it's a good sign of time management that you are on time. A failure to be punctual shows that you are poor with time management and therefore unreliable.

Learn to organize yourself.

Professional people are organized with their time, their property, and their space. In an office setting, being organized means you need to be systemic in what you do. Prioritizing your activities and learning how to do new things is all going to help you to be better in your job and professional.

Professionalism takes time to develop, but if you give yourself that time you’re going to be an asset to the business you are working within.