10 Characteristics of Professionalism in the Workplace

10 Characteristics of Professionalism in the Workplace

Make this the year you shine.

Being a professional in your chosen field means much more than just holding a college degree and donning a business suit. The way in which you conduct yourself is also a key component of your success.

Here are 10 characteristics true professionals possess in the workplace (not in any order of importance).

1. A Neat Appearance

Look sharp and organized: Iron your clothes, polish your shoes, and practice good hygiene and grooming.

 2. Proper Demeanor (in Person and Online)

Be polite and well-spoken 100 percent of the time. Whether you’re speaking with customers, superiors, or co-workers, keep calm and be tactful, even in tense situations.

 3. Reliable

  • Get your work done on time.
  • Respond to requests promptly and follow-through with promises in timely fashion.
  • Set benchmarks and meet them to demonstrate reliability.

 4. Competent

  • Express confidence, but not attitude.
  • Become an expert in your field: Continue your education, attend seminars, and attain relevant professional designations. Remain teachable. Knowledge is power!

 5. Communicator

  • Compose your letters and emails to be brief and to the point. Make sure you have a professional signature and email address.
  • Keep your tone polite and formal.

 6. Good Phone Etiquette

  • Identify yourself with your full name, company, and title when placing and/or answering a call.
  • Do not dominate the conversation; listen intently and process what the other person is saying.
  • Do not use slang terms and mind your tone of voice.
  • Smile while you talk: The caller may not see it, but they can hear it in your voice.

 7. Poised

Maintain your composure, even when facing a difficult situation. If a customer or superior is being belligerent, do not mirror that behavior. Diffuse the situation with your professional demeanor.

 8. Ethical

AAPC members agree to follow a code of ethics. It is imperative to display ethical behavior at all times, on or off the clock.

 9. Organized

  • Keep your area neat and organized for easy execution of tasks.
  • Keep an updated appointment book so you don’t forget meetings.
  • Carry only the necessary contents for the day in your briefcase.

 10. Accountable

Take responsibility for your actions. Own your mistake, work to resolve it, and fix it as soon as possible. Even better: Learn from your mistakes. Lead by this example to create trust.

Certified Professional Compliance Officer - CPCO

Be All that You Can Be

If you’re lacking any of these professional characteristics, or have let some slide, take the initiative to improve yourself. Put your best foot forward and you’ll go far.

Gina Piccirilli

Gina Piccirilli, CPC, CPMA, is director of HIM at Ellenville Regional Hospital. She began her career in healthcare almost 20 years ago in data entry and went on to code and audit multiple specialties. She is also a consultant, specializing in documentation improvement and E/M auditing. Before founding the Ellenville, N.Y., local chapter, Piccirilli was vice president of the New Windsor, N.Y., local chapter. Piccirilli is a Region 2 – Atlantic AAPCCA representative and can be reached at gina.piccirilli@aapcca.org.

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Gina Piccirilli, CPC, CPMA, is director of HIM at Ellenville Regional Hospital. She began her career in healthcare almost 20 years ago in data entry and went on to code and audit multiple specialties. She is also a consultant, specializing in documentation improvement and E/M auditing. Before founding the Ellenville, N.Y., local chapter, Piccirilli was vice president of the New Windsor, N.Y., local chapter. Piccirilli is a Region 2 – Atlantic AAPCCA representative and can be reached at gina.piccirilli@aapcca.org.

7 Responses to “10 Characteristics of Professionalism in the Workplace”

  1. Brittany Flynn says:

    This is absolutely wonderful. Not only inspiring, but knowledgeable as well. Thank you for writing this, and helping me better myself for my company.

    Brittany Flynn
    Front Desk Agent
    Columbus, Ga

  2. Ian Denis says:

    I like these, Becouse it gives knowladge to us as potential feature professionals to come in the world and also add wisdom and valve to our works

  3. Ian Denis says:

    OK, i accept to be so

  4. Ian Denis says:

    show me the marked required field

  5. Daisy kandie says:

    I like this because it bring the difference between unprofessional and professional. Once you are educated try to copy these behaviors.

  6. Clive says:

    The basic dimensions of professionalism are the application of a body of developed knowledge, obtained from extended study and experience, disinterestedly (that means without prejudice) to the benefit of the client. Another take is: you advise your client as if you were standing in their shoes to obtain for them the best outcome in the circumstances, irrespective of the benefit to one self.

    I note that under point 2 you refer to ‘superiors’. We aren’t feudal we are a democracy; there are no superiors, only people senior to one.

  7. sadew says:

    Great ideas. These general ideas can be adapted or adjusted to suit any profession to be specific. Thanks lot.

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