Ethics and Profession

A profession can be defined as the occupational group that is based on the unique education, specialist knowledge, and framework of practice and behavior that establishes community trust, respect, and recognition. A large proportion of professions outlines the importance of ethics, excellent service and empathy when dealing with the clients.

Diverse professions have developed over the years due to:

  • Rise of new specialist areas of expertise which requires licensing and technical standards
  • Pressure from the governments and regulators. These entities encourage the formation of strong ethical standards between the professionals and the society at large.
  • Demand for a certain profession by the parties who see the merit of working as a professional and desire to work with professionals in specific fields.

Establishment of Trust by Professions

A credible profession is characterized by the strong trust from both the clients and the society at large. Professions builds through the following ways:

1.   Provision of Community Service

The provision of community services creates confidence and professional pride and professional acceptance. Consequently, a trustworthy profession is substantially flexible and is independent from the government regulatory bodies when carrying its operations.

2.   Making a Profession Client-based

The trust of a profession is built if it puts its integrity and the interest of clients above their interests. A client-focused profession is one that its actions portray a high level of care, skill, and diligence while making the interests of the clients’ priority. In summary, a profession gains trust if it shows fiduciary duty-a a commitment to high-quality care when acting for the benefit of another party.

3.   Normalizing of the Practitioner  Behavior

A profession is trusted if it is grounded on codes and standards recognized by regulators and the government, under which the profession is established. The regulatory bodies should understand the profession’s codes and standards and their enforcement.

4.   Developing High Entry Standards for a Profession

A profession should develop an elaborate entry requirement into a profession since membership in a profession is a sign to the consumers that the professional will deliver high-quality service. Such requirements include expertise, knowledge, technical skills, and ethics.

5.   Possessing Body of Expert Knowledge

Experienced and skilled practitioners should make available useful knowledge to its members to work resourcefully and ethically, based on best practice.

6.   Continuous Education

Having qualified into a profession, there is need for ongoing education to its members to accommodate the ever-changing knowledge and technical skills, technology, standards of ethical behavior, legal and business environment where professional services are needed. Most of the professional regulatory bodies make it mandatory for the members to undergo continuing professional development -undergoing specified new learning each year.

7.   Monitoring Professional Misconduct

Each professional found liable for professional misconduct should be held accountable. This is necessary to maintain the integrity and the reputation of the profession and hence trust.

8.   Making a profession Collegial

Despite that member of a profession do compete, they should respect each other rights, autonomy, and dignity.

9.   Establishing Profession Oversight Authorities

Although it is the responsibility of each professional to maintain a high level of professional standards and competency, an oversight body is established to make this happen. Moreover, the oversight body is mandated to provide continuous educational resources and information on professional changes as time goes by.

10. Engagement of the Professional Members

Professional members may help to protect the future of professional values by acting as educators to peers. They achieve this by volunteering to mentor and inspire other young professionals or even those who wish to join a certain profession to develop expertise and ethics. In the long term, the future trust of a profession is protected.

Question

The credibility of a profession is deeply dependent on the trust of both the clients and the community at large. Which of the following is least likely to be a way of building trust by professions?

  1. Members’ engagement to nature future professionalism
  2. Antagonistic competition among the members of a profession
  3. Continuous provision of educational resources to the members of a profession

Solution

The correct answer is B.

Competition is healthy in any other industry, but members of a profession do compete, they should respect each other rights, autonomy and dignity. By doing this, the reputation of a profession is maintained.

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