Professional values refer to personal values such as honesty, trustworthiness, justice and respect among other values which a person upholds while carrying out his or her professional duties. Ethics on the other hand refers to the moral judgments upon which rights and wrongs are distinguished. Values and ethics are used interchangeable in different situations and they are complimentary.
Professional values held by a professional help him or her to make ethical decisions while faced with ethical dilemmas. While career growth and development may not always come along due to professional values and ethics, maintenance of such success is only possible when professional values and ethics are highly exercised and upheld. Job promotion and retention also measures or enhances career success of an individual.
Managers as well as organizations look for professional values and ethics during promotion and recruitment functions thus they affect career success especially because they influence promotion decisions (Harris, 1998). Professional values and ethics as mentioned above are not the determinants of career success especially in the short run but they determine the sustainability of the success. Career success can be termed as the long term development of a person’s career which is based on values and ethics.
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It is possible for people to gain career success through unscrupulous means such as embezzlement of funds or bribery or other unethical behavior (Korman & Korman, 1980). However, such practices are unsustainable in the long run and they eventually fail. Exercising professional value and ethics ensures that whichever success one gets in his or her career, lasts longer. Professional values and ethics are also vital for the long term success of a business.
Most of the short term successes of business which are not founded on professional values and ethics mostly are the reason for business failure in the future and this is evident with the recent scandals that are being reported involving once though ethical companies around the world. Professional values and ethics also help an individual or a business to avoid unnecessary legal costs which hinders success by tarnishing the public image of a company or an individual (Perrin, 2007).
- Harris, H. (1998): Making professional values and ethics a competitive resource. Retrieved on 19th June 2009 from, http://www. unisa. edu. au/hawkeinstitute/gig/documents/prof-values-ethics. pdf.
- Korman, A. & Korman, R. W. (1980): Career Success: Personal Failure. ISBN 0013147773, Prentice Hall Perrin, S. (2007): Ethics vs. Career Success. Retrieved on 19th June 2009 from, http://www. careersinaudit. com/Articles/38/EthicsvsCareerSuccess. html
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