Based in Washington, Ross is a general manager of a food safety company. His musings explore life, work and every moment in between.

Professionalism = emotional patience

“Professionalism = emotional patience.” Jay Rifenbary

You know it when you see it. Someone who acts professionally, someone who can weather the storm of the moment, think clearly, find their inner strength, and pick the right path. They are the epitome of professional.

This is not to discount emotion. Emotion is the fuel that we use to move, to create, to inspire, to motivate, and to grind. Emotions are vital. But to be professional, you must be able to harness this emotional space.  

Professionalism demands patience, the ability to delay what might feel good now for something that might be right. Professionals with emotional patience contribute to the present without having to repair from their emotional outbursts. Patience of thought, control of body language, reasoning before words, and deliberate communication are the essence of professional effectiveness.  

Professionalism = emotional patience.

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