What is a professional? Subroto Bagchi, one of India’s foremost business leaders and authors, believes the traditional definition has changed. He writes in The Professional that “it’s not enough for someone to just be able to do a job in order to qualify for this title; he or she not only must be able to accept responsibility for their own work and actions but also must understand how that work and those actions will translate to the rest of the world.” The author then goes on to supply examples from around the world to support his argument that ethical decisions matter, especially in this age when business is so very globally integrated.
One of the true pleasures of our global culture is the availability of business books from around the world. It’s refreshing to see workplace issues through the eyes of an author whose lexicon of examples ranges from corporate officers to grave diggers using horse-drawn carriages on the streets of India.
In this provocative book, author Bagchi provides gentle but firm instruction on the responsibilities inherent in becoming a true professional, regardless of one’s actual job title or level. And why would such instruction be needed? As Bagchi tactfully points out, “There is no institution large enough or powerful enough to make sure each of us is behaving in the best way possible” and, later, “Without integrity, any professionally qualified individual is actually a danger to society.”
Perhaps most compelling, however, is his common-sense argument that today’s new workers are entering fields that didn’t exist until recently — and hence, have no established codes of conduct. A useful book for any worker, this may be an essential read for those just entering the world of paid employment.