Monday 31 October 2011

Thought Picnic: The character of professionalism

Living by the wits of one’s expertise

For the past 16 years, I have been self-employed, within that time; I took full-time employment for two years, was seriously ill that I was out of work for a year and have had the unfortunate situation of being unemployed for nigh on a year.

Difficult as times might have been, there are things that appear to stand out in my career that requires sharing or maybe just documenting for posterity sake.

Trying to get back into work has not been easy especially where I have had to deal with people who only recognise me from what they have read in my resume and nothing else.

Quality and qualification

At interview, the questions are usually geared to the fundamentals of my knowledge rather than my suitability for the job, as I pride myself in implementing systems that work right the first time I have found that I might not have answers to questions that represent the experiences of others who might not be as thorough in their implementations – some problems just seem too incredible and unnecessary but not many are ready to have others fix the poor setups they have created.

That by the way, it so happens that literally every job I have had has come from recommendations of those I have worked with or worked for in the past.

As much as possible, I strive to do my best and that appears to create some lasting impression that keeps me in the professional and sometimes social minds of my ex-colleagues that when certain opportunities present themselves I get a call to ascertain my interest.

Leaving worthwhile legacies

I believe it is a combination of character and professionalism that allows for this including the simple aim of not burning any of my bridges.

For the job I will start tomorrow, I am even the more amazed because I was recommended by colleagues I worked with at a time when I had just returned from a long bout of illness; I only had the strength to do 32-hours a week with Wednesdays off and the greater technical burden was shouldered by a selfless and hardworking colleague.

In many cases, I believe I was accommodated quite well despite my shortcomings and frailties, these same people always seemed to have me in mind all through the times when I had no work which for some reason must have indicated I had left some sort of impression.

I am honoured that they have chosen once again to have me as a colleague to approach new challenges but the most important thing of all is a career that is built on the character of professionalism will always find opportunity when such openings present themselves.

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