Here is a Miss Manners post for the week.
Professionalism is something that I take pretty seriously because I have always presented myself as a professional individual. I am frequently in situations that require a certain level of professionalism.
Professionalism Maxim #1: Dress Appropriately
When I was observing in an elementary school class, I was a student observer and there was a student teacher also in the classroom. I showed up in professional attire: business pants, nice blouse and flats. The student teacher showed up in a jersey/cotton dress from Old Navy that was WAY too low cut. When attending a professional event, do yourself a favor: DON'T wear CFM heels, DON'T wear something too low cut, if you bend over and fall out, change your top, DON'T wear a short skirt. What is short? If you have to take caution walking up stairs, change, If the slit is so far up that you have to take caution when crossing your legs, change.
Professionalism Maxim #2: Be Careful with your Facebook
This rule is two-fold. First of all - let's use caution when posting pictures and statuses shall we? A status like "SOOOOOOOOO Hungover from last night.....wish I could remember the night" is inappropriate. Convey the same message a little more covertly like this "woke up with a headache, hate when that happens" people who were with you the night before will know what you're talking about and people who weren't won't think you're an alcoholic. Also, potential employers are getting more and more access to your facebook. Just DON'T do it. It's not cute; it's trashy. Now with the pictures. Do you have pictures of you drinking underage on facebook? Take them DOWN. Not making you look like a responsible person. Got pictures of you making out (or more) with boyfriends/exboyfriends/etc. on facebook? I'm not saying don't keep pictures like this, just don't post them for everyone to see. Take them DOWN. Got pictures with you (or others) using illegal substances in them? Take them DOWN. Be responsible here people!!!
Second part of this maxim: LOG OUT. Always log out of your facebook page when on someone else's phone/computer/laptop/iTouch/etc. Where as you might be a responsible person, you might be friends with immature people. I'm not saying don't be friends around them, I'm saying be responsible about it. When you leave yourself logged in on public computers, you are asking for someone to post something dirty and awful. And please, PLEASE don't post statuses for other people. And especially NEVER EVER post statuses having to do with bodily functions that are typically reserved for the bathroom. It does NOT make you look like an adult. It makes you look like a child. Seriously, I don't want to read about it, NO one wants to.
Professionalism Maxim #3: Always Smile
There may be times when you don't particularly love your job. It may be doing a task you feel is below you or dealing with unsavory people. Suck it up. At the end of the day, that is what you're getting paid to do so you might as well do it with a smile and make it enjoyable for everyone else around. Now, I'm not saying that you should approach work as a Stepford employee. You can certainly go and complain about your day to your boyfriend/fiance/husband/children/girlfriends/etc. You want to switch up the group every once in a while, because if all your conversations at home turn into you complaining about work, your family will start to tune it out and get annoyed very quickly. If you go out for margaritas and a complain fest, be careful; you never know if the boss's best friend/sister/mother-in-law is at the next table. For those really terrible days, think about a girls night in with margaritas to complain about the boss.