Discussion 2

Ch.2: Even though we might be reluctant to categorize certain occupations as genuine professions, an individual in any occupation may coherently be categorized as “a real professional.” Offer an account of what you take the mark of a true professional to be.


27 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Carol Kines on 2011/07/11 at 2:59 PM

    I believe that a true or “real professional” is a person with a marked degree of knowledge and expertise in a field requiring a high degree of intellectual capability, which results from higher education and experience. A “real professional” is a person that can be trusted both for their knowledge, as well as for their integrity and honesty to represent their client’s best interests. I agree with Bayle’s description of the three necessary elements of a profession, and I would submit that a “real professional” would meet the elements of their profession. In other words, the “real professional would be extensively trained where part of the training involves significant intellectual training, and that this person would provide a key service to society. In addition, I believe that the “real professional” would continue to learn more about his or her field through activities at work, and/or professional organizations and scholarly learning. I feel that the “real professional” is a person that would be highly sought after by many, and would be comfortable making difficult decisions in his or her field with a high degree of autonomy.


    • I agree that a “real professional” is a person that would be highly sought after by many.
      My auto mechanic, who really has no “high degree of intellectual capability,” certainly is the best and fairest in his OCCUPATION. I would not take my car anywhere else to be fixed! To me, he is a true “professional” at his JOB- always fair, courteous, and honest.
      I submit this question- does his extensive “on-the-job” training and experience despite his mere trade school education make him less of a valuable “professional” than an excellent attorney?


      • Posted by Nicole Zarzycki on 2011/07/15 at 4:43 PM

        I just wanted to say that I totally agree with you. Just because a person has a degree from college does not make him or her any better from those who are mechanics or even cosmetologists for example.

      • Posted by Carol Kines on 2011/07/16 at 6:20 PM

        You make an excellent point.
        I agree that a college degree may not be an absolute requirement to distinguish a real professional from others. I do think that higher level thought, knowledge, and experience are important. With the complexity of vehicles, there are now many college or specialty school programs offered in this field. In addition, some people have learned on the job or self-taught themselves the necessary information. Thus, the person has a high level of skill that others do not have. I am not sure how far to go in calling people professionals, however. I would not want to water down the term too much.

  2. Posted by Natalie Haynam on 2011/07/12 at 1:43 PM

    After reading and analyzing chapter two, I do not believe there is an actual definition that constitutes a true professional, rather a group of characteristics that the book points out. When considering an occupation or person a professional, extensive training is mandatory, whether that be a Bachelor or Master’s degree; however, everyone who has a licensure or certification is not considered a true professional because we are awarded these honors for different aspects in life, not just on a professional level. In society, members of a true profession provide an important service meaning that it is their obligation to provide for society through their occupation. A true professional has expert knowledge about their expertise that they can educate and teach others about the subject their client may be unfamiliar with. Also, I believe a true professional is never hired. They are consulted or obtained by someone who needs their services in which they have authority and oversee what they do for their client or clientele.


  3. Posted by NChaney on 2011/07/13 at 12:29 AM

    In reference to chapter two of the text, I believe that Micheal D. Bayes has the most complete idea of a true professional. Although his idea may be the most complete in my opinion, I don’t beleive a concise definition can be obtained. I’m in my final semester of college before I’m granted a Bachelor’s in Civil Engineering. This is a feild in which a professional licesene can be obtained. In order to become a professional engineer or P.E. one must work in practice for four years first. This reiterates the idea of Bayes. I’m a firm believer that in order to become a professional it takes an enormous amount of ambition along with dedication to one’s specified occupation. Once a professional, it becomes your duty to provide services to the public which may be rare. Living up to the duties and obligations you undertake for the good of society is what a “real professional” is made of. One last point I would like to make is, that no matter what a professional should admit to any mistakes they may have made. A real professional would never point the finger at anyone but themselves.


  4. I tend to agree with Bayles’ necessary features that qualify an occupation as a profession. Spending the time and money to further one’s education requires commitment and ambition, while providing an important service to society signifies a desire to “leave a mark” and be remembered for something other than how much money you made. “The services of professionals are important for individuals to realize the values they seek in their personal lives- health, wealth, justice, comfort, and safety.” (Callahan, Chapter 2, p.29) Lawyer, Doctor, Nurse, Professor, Architect, Engineer, etc. are certainly the most common titles that our society tends to think of when the term “professional” is mentioned. Along these lines, however, I would like to make the point that “marginal professions” as discussed by Barber, could also have this feature. A professional musician or artist, for example, may or may not have any formal education, i.e. a degree, but may have blessed many a generation and future generations with their talent and beautiful compositions. The nursing assistant at the retirement home may have shown an incredible amount of “professionalism” and dedication to her job by going above and beyond her job requirements for a patient. The “Professionalism of Journalism” by Merrill on pp 39 – 44 in our text truly emphasized that “the forces of authoritarianism and conformity which are creeping in upon us from all sides” could possibly stifle some individualism and creativity that our society enjoys. I do see the value in trying to strictly define a “profession,” but firmly believe that the term “professional” should be used more as an adjective or adverb!


  5. Posted by Misty Bess on 2011/07/14 at 5:01 PM

    To me, there are many aspects that make up the true professional. I think Bayles summed up my thoughts on the subject thoroughly. I think a professional is someone who sacrifices their time and energy to become substantially knowledgeable in their chosen specialty field. A dedication to providing the best care and services to the client(s) is a must and receiving a higher degree of intellectual foundation supports this. I also feel a true professional holds himself accountable for the autonomy he/she receives. The public receiving their expertise is expected to give the professional their trust on the subject, in turn the professional needs to be confidant that they can deliver on the promises they give. Also, I do agree with Barber on some of his thoughts of professionalism. Universities do play a monumental role in the shaping of a true professional as they tend to offer the most support in gaining the intellectual knowledge as well as giving opportunities for learning new techniques and ideas in chosen specialty fields as technology evolves. In closing, in my opinion, a “real professional” gains superior knowledge of the subject chosen, the support and trust of the people he/she is providing service to, and makes the commitment to continue to grow intellectually as we discover new ideas in this world.



  6. Posted by Mike Senchak on 2011/07/15 at 1:12 PM

    When referring to a true professional I feel that this language may be used in many different instances. In our society we refer to athletes as “professional football players” or may say the man at the 10 minute oil stop acted “very professionally”. I tend to use this type of language and I believe that many people in different occupations may act like true professionals. We may also use the word “professional” to mean that the person engages in a profession. Examples of these, as outlined in the lecture notes, may be a lawyer, a doctor, or a professor. I tend to agree with much of what Bayles sais in regards to the features of a profession. Bayles notes, “extensive training, a significant intellectual component, and an important service to society”.


  7. Posted by Nicole Zarzycki on 2011/07/15 at 4:55 PM

    While reading Bayles necessary features for a profession I found myself agreeing with him. First of all exstensive training in any field is important. From the best trained dog-groomer to the best trained lawyer, but just because you do not need a college baccalaureate to be a dog groomer does not make you any less of a professional. In the paragraph on pg. 28 of Callahan it states that in order to be a professional you have to have that college degree, which I do not agree with.
    The second necessary feature, ” the training involves a significant intelectual component” pg. 28, I also agree with. But this trainging like the book says can be physical skills or intellectual skills. The last necessary feature of providing an important service to society is also agreed upon. Without many “professions” or “professionals” out there we would not have many services. But even though i agree with these features it does not mean that they are the only features a professional should or does posess. Anybody in the field, whatever it may be, cna be a professional. If a person is highly trained and knowledgable in his or her field and conducts their self with dignity and respect to others is a professional in my eyes.


  8. Posted by Ashley Whitford on 2011/07/15 at 7:38 PM

    After reading chapter two, I have found myself leaning towards the ideas of Bayles and his perspective on true professionals. He offers three features on what makes a professional. They are extensive training in your field of work, the training has to offer a significant intellectual component, and the trained ability provides an important service to the society. The first feature Bayles talks about explains that most professions are required to get a degree from college, at minimum a Bachelor’s degree. Although I think that Bayles requirement is important, I also think that people who go to other scholarly places such as trade schools can be included in this important feature. The next necessary feature that Bayles mentions is that the training of the profession has to require a significant intellectual component. These individuals must be able to advise others in the society that are not as well educated as the professional on his subject. A few examples of people that I would consider that to be in society today are, doctors, lawyers, and mechanics. Each occupation has had extensive training in their particular subject of study and they are able to advise others about their profession. The third and final necessary feature Bayles presents is that the trained ability has to provide an important service in the society. I find this to be the most important feature that Bayles talks about because without the professionals offering their services to society, the society would essentially fall apart. Bayles also offers additional, but not necessary features that define a professional which are, obtaining a certification or licensing in a professionals field, an organization of the members of a profession, and that the profession delivers esoteric services, which ultimately means that the profession has to offers advice or actions or both to individuals, organizations or governments. I feel that although the additional features help distinguish a professional, they do not make or break what the definition of a profession.


  9. Posted by Michael Green on 2011/07/16 at 4:23 PM

    I believe you can be professional in occupation. Its the end product of your work that determines if its professional grade. A professional thinks about every little aspect of the job and gets as many details perfected as possible. A professional also has a good attitude. A person can do flawless work but he is a jerk in the process in he wil not be asked back to do another job. Integrity and attitude are key factors.


  10. After reviewing the material about defining a “professional”, the chapter had me thinking about a wide array of ‘jobs’ and what things I associate to be a professional. Although a degree is becoming more standard to obtain a ‘professional position’, many successful professionals have extensive training with no degree. I think a professional must have experience in their field and also shows the ability to excel in that particular job or field. Take a salesman for example. One might not have a degree, but they may have years of experience, proven sales performance and possibly on the job training. This person would get an exceptional position over a recent graduate with a degree or license with little experience. To be a professional, I also think you should demonstrate the ability to manage people or clients and be provided the opportunity to advance to another level, for instance management or supervisor. Along with these characteristics, a true professional will love doing their job and find ways to improve their performance. Lastly, I believe a professional will in fact act professional. The person must carry themselves within the company guidelines and act on a professional level with anyone they come in contact with through the company and clients.


  11. A person who belongs to a profession; A person who earns his living from a specified activity; An expert; Of, pertaining to, or in accordance with the (usually high) standards of a profession; That is carried out for money, especially as a livelihood; Expert
    (Professionals) Assignments require management of the institution, or a customarily recognized department or subdivision, primary assignments include directing the work of others using discretion and independent judgment to guide and direct policy and business of the institution(Professionals) Employees must have specialized and theoretical knowledge usually acquired through college training, job experience, or other comparative training.


  12. Posted by Leah Richards on 2011/07/27 at 7:43 PM

    I agree with a lot of what everyone is saying about true and real professionals. And how I see it as that there is no difference between a real professional and a true professional. I believe that if you go to school and become a teacher, doctor, beautician, mechanic, lawyer etc, you are a real/true professional. even if you don’t go to school and whatever you end up doing in your life and whatever your career may be I still think that is a real/true profession considering you and real/true professional. You are a real/true professional at whatever it is that you may do.


  13. Posted by mnortey on 2011/07/29 at 12:44 AM

    when the thought of a professional surfaces instantly i feel like this individual has taken proper measures to be the best in their field. i completely agree with bayles as he states that professionals are those who in fact explains what a professional must go through form field work to attaining a degree. a professional is classy knows what is going on at all times and presents themselves with the highest honor at all times


  14. To me a true professional is a person that does there best at their job, is a humanitarian,and strives at becoming better at their work . For example, say your a doctor(Have a degree ten years in college, five with hospital experience) and your in surgery with your patient. You are in such a hurry to get out of their because you have plans with some friends that you leave an instrument inside of her. In recovery the patient is really sick and another doctor does an x-ray and notices your mistake. He informs you of your slip up and tells you your not a professional. On the other hand there’s a young man that works at a fast food resturant.(he has no college exp.) He’s has only been there a few short weeks, but is always come to work with a positive attitude, excited to learn new things, is nice to the customers, and wants to be the best at what he does. His manager tells him he’s a professional. Tjohnson


  15. Posted by Walter Bell on 2011/07/31 at 6:22 PM

    I would classify a job as a profession in a very similar way that Bayles classifies a profession. I believe there should be a certain level of training and experience. We go to a professional on a certain matter because we are seeking advice, a service, or education. A professional would not be able to adequately inform somebody on the topic the client is seeking help with if they have not had enough training and/or experience. I do not believe most labor jobs are professions because there is not a major stress on education and training. Although non-professional jobs are very important, I believe professionalism should have a higher education and training level to distinguish them from other lines of work.


  16. Posted by Kimberly Bertmeyer on 2011/08/03 at 5:48 PM

    I believe that there is a difference between simply an occupation and a true profession. Anyone can get a job and make money and call it an occupation. It takes a lot of hard work, training and dedication to become a true professional. For the most part, I agree with Bayles when it comes to the characteristics that would make one a real professional. A true professional should have extensive training relating to their profession. I agree that the training should involve an extensive intellectual component but I would not agree that this knowledge would have to be a college degree. I think that the profession should provide an important service to society. In my opinion, this part is a little bit more important than having a college degree.

    Say I am a “professional musician”. I have a degree in music performance and extensive training on the violin. However, I am not providing an important service to society.

    I think this aspect of professionalism seems to be overlooked sometimes. For example, an STNA, or state tested nurses aid, goes through training to be able to handle patients properly. They do not require a college degree, but they are required to pass an exam and become licensed. They also provide an important service to society. Without STNAs, there would be no one to care for the elderly in nursing homes.

    So, overall I agree with Bayles, when it comes to the features of what makes a true professional. However, I would not include the certification or licensing in with the additional features. I would have it be part of the intellectual component of the necessary features. Professionals should have to have significant intellectual knowledge resulting in either a degree, certification, or licensing.


  17. Posted by Dominic DeRose on 2011/08/04 at 5:26 PM

    A true professional is someone who can separate their own personal morality from what their particular professional field requires to effectively serve their role to society. In the instance of lawyers and their particular professional privilege known as “legal confidence” that is, what ever a client tells you in private you cannot share with anyone otherwise it could hurt your case. For example a client tells you that he/she is guilty of a murder but thinks there isn’t enough evidence to convict them so they attempt to plead not guilty. Even with the knowledge that this person did indeed commit the crime you must do your best to represent their interests in the courtroom. To separate your personal morality from your professional duty is the mark of a true professional.


  18. Posted by Molly on 2011/08/08 at 4:04 PM

    I believe that a true profession lies under Bayles additional features of a profession. I think that there should be a process of certification or licensing to prove ones ability to do the job. Also to have professional organization to help run a business or do a job better, and to have fair level of autonomy of his/ her work so there is a freedom of ones actions. I don’t believe that everyone who wants a true professional job needs to maintain a degree from college or another type of schooling. For example my brother-in-law went to three different schools, one included a NASCAR school, now has a degree as a mechanic and has a good job up in canton, but the man he works for is very intelligent with vehicles but never obtained a degree but it is clear that he knows more than anyone else working there. Even though that this is not every case it still proves the point that not EVERYONE needs a degree. With that thought I still stand by the fact that one should have a certification or licensing to prove their ability and skill to that job to actually put “true profession” on their job title.


  19. Posted by Michelle Green on 2011/08/09 at 1:48 AM

    I true professional is someone who does there job to perfection. From sports to waitress, anyone that does their job to the highest standard is a professional


  20. Posted by JScacchetti on 2011/08/10 at 3:49 AM

    A genuine profession is one that has been socially accepted as a advantageous career path. A job where you need to have some sort of pre-training in order to qualify for the application process. It doesn’t necessarily have to be a piece of paper with a degree on it, but experience in the field is a valid prerequisite. A job where you can climb the corporate ladder and eventually become executive branch etc. A job where only a portion of the population know how to do it. It’s the exclusivity of being able to perform the job that makes it genuine and desirable.


  21. I agree with Bayles view of a professional it requires extensive training, an intellectual component, and provides a important service to society. That being said I do believe there are different kinds of professionals. A profession is delivering an esoteric service to society, and there are different degrees of professionals within these professions. A professional is seen as someone who is a master in his is or field. The more the knowledge they have in certain field gives them a different degree of professionalism. Society gives professional’s the privilege to do what they do for the society. Professional’s would be people that meet the minimum entrance standards for the profession. One could say anyone receiving their degree from a university in a certain profession is then privileged to act as a professional in that field. Doctor’s and lawyer’s are seen as more specialized professions taking a higher degree of education to obtain, and they help the best interests of society. Professionals in our society may be seen as a expert at their craft with this sense of autonomy. Many lower level business professionals do not have a complete control over what they do for their client. Business professionals may do what is in the best interests of their organization. Where as doctors and lawyers maintain complete control over the outside. The book states that a true professional is never hired he is retained, engaged, and consulted by someone who needs his services. This helps distinguish certain professions from others where you need to be hired and a part of the organization.


  22. Posted by Michael Sammartino on 2011/08/10 at 8:10 PM

    A true professional does what they do to the highest standard and has an in-depth understanding and knowledge of that subject. They can be trusted and held accountable for dealings in their subject matter. For example, in the educational world this would be a Doctor. They are ‘trusted’ to teach students and ‘held accountable’ from businesses and the government paying for research to be performed.



  23. Posted by Philip Ciprian on 2011/08/11 at 8:36 PM

    A true professional to me is simply someone who puts their work ahead of their personal feelings. They should not let personal opinions or judgments affect their work. They should possess extensive knowledge of their profession and help people who are unfamiliar to better understand. An example would be a doctor educating his/her patients on the matter of an injury or an engineer conveying the details of a project to a customer in a manner than they can understand.


  24. Posted by Marc Kosec on 2011/08/11 at 11:02 PM

    A true professional in my opinion must hold certain values and standards. They must first have some sort of verified licensed background knowledge to certify to a customer that they are an expert in their field. Next, they must act is such a manner that is appropriate in the corporate world. Examples of this could be no use of foul language and also the ability to communicate properly in an astute and articulated way. This professional should always hone their skills in their field as well and maintain sharp skills.


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