The Pro’s Code: Respect

RespectWelcome to Summer School. It’s the time of year when you either get caught up or you go above and beyond. This Summer, I am sharing my Professional’s Code of Ethics, which contains 14 criteria – topics – of what it takes to be a professional. Where appropriate, I will reference positive or negative examples from the media of these criteria “in action.” Pass the information on to people who can benefit from the wisdom. Share the topics or spark a dialogue with your boss, team or co-workers. Throughout the series, challenge your level of professionalism and help others to elevate their own.

Criteria 1: Respectful of others and oneself. Respect is on the top of the list for a reason. When you respect yourself first, then you can respect others.

How differently would people behave if they first thought “I respect you” or “I respect myself” before they took action? The workplace – and the world – would be significantly improved if we took a little time to think that. Our culture teaches us to be more inclusive and respectful.

In their study, What Is Your Quality of Life at Work? researchers Tony Schwartz and Christine Porath, with the Harvard Business Review, surveyed about 20,000 employees worldwide. They measured four basic needs in the workplace: renewal (physical), value (emotional), focus (mental) and purpose (spiritual). Of those surveyed, more than half (54%) indicated that they did not get respect on a regular basis from their leaders. When employees felt respected on the job, they were 55% more engaged in their work. When you show respect to the people you work with, it makes a difference in engagement, performance, satisfaction and retention.

Whether or not you support Caitlyn Jenner’s recent decision to become transgender, you can still respect her for making that important, life-changing decision. You may work with, live next door to, or meet a transgender or an LGBT person. What consideration are you showing? Respect that person for who he is or who she is. When the internet exploded with comments about how Caitlyn Jenner resembled Jessica Lange, Lange commented, “That’s so wonderful.” What a class act. She showed respect.

The true professional is that person who respects others and oneself.

How do you communicate respect to others?

How do you demonstrate inclusion of others?