The Professional’s Pledge

From this day forth, I will be ashamed if I intentionally give anything less than my best. I have value, and was not put on this earth to begrudgingly exist. No, I was put here to make a meaningful and positive difference in the lives of others. Every book I’ve read, every class I’ve attended, and every lesson I’ve learned was not for me alone. I was blessed with such knowledge so I may use it to bless others. Otherwise, if I keep it to myself, I am being selfish. Yes, I am being unprofessional.

To be professional is what I am called to be. To take pride in my work is what I am called to do. Henceforth, I will always do more than is expected of me. I will not rely on my mood of the day to dictate how I go about my work. Like the wind, my mood will shift. Consistency can not…must not shift. And professionals are consistent.

My work is my brand. How I make others feel is my brand. The manner in which I do my work is my brand. Each morning when I awake, I will be grateful for yet another day to make a positive contribution to the world. Each night, when I’m in bed, I will assess my day to see if anyone’s day was any better because of some contribution I made. The contribution can be as simple as opening a door for someone or giving a kind word to a stranger. The door that I opened may be the only kind deed that person experienced all year. That kind word to a stranger, may have helped rescue someone from a state of depression.

As a professional, I will not measure my success by the compensation or gratitude I receive from who I served. To do that is to set myself up for failure and heartache, because not every good deed will be acknowledged. Instead, I will give and serve because I demand that love pervades the very intention of my actions. Whatever my job may be, let me perform it with love, and I will not fail.

Beginning today, I will read these words, and they will help me re-focus on how precious this day truly is:

  • Today… enthusiastically and gratefully celebrate that I woke up.
  • Today…begin by loving myself, then let that same love guide how I treat others (regardless if they deserve it or not).
  • Today…do one thing for one customer, with absolute perfection…then repeat.
  • Today…tell one colleague that I value them and why.
  • Today…tell one customer that I value them and why.
  • Today…tell myself that I value myself and why.
  • Today…serve each person with excellence and not adjust my eagerness, kindness or attentiveness based on how “important” I believe a particular customer is.
  • Today…make it my minimum expectation to exceed everyone else’s expectations.
  • Today…don’t just serve…don’t just engage…but truly honor each person I serve.
  • Today…graciously appreciate that no one else in the world can serve exactly like me, and be proud of that difference.
  • And when the day comes to a close, ask myself, “Did I make a positive, meaningful, and memorable difference in anyone’s life today?”

Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow is not promised. All I have is today. And if I do nothing else, I will ensure that on this day, the world will know I am here.

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