There are two aspects of professionalism within the Army, being professional and maintaining professionalism. To be professional Soldiers must hold themselves to high standards. They Practice and hone their skills daily as they are committed to serve. Being a professional does take time, but through training, education and experience that title can be achieved. The Army will only maintain professionals and the title of being a profession if Soldiers are being invested in and learning what traits, skills and attributes to apply as a professional. Soldiers learning the profession need to be led and inspired; they should be challenged and feel the calling. The Army is not just a job, it’s a lifestyle that they volunteer to do; and are committed to defend.
Army Professionals have the ability to reason effectively. They call this discretionary judgment, and it’s achieved through years of practice, experience and knowledge. They maintain professionalism by knowing what to do or how to do it. True professionals maintain their own work. Practicing discretionary judgment and displaying it has reinforced the trust relationship the American people have in the Army profession.
Professional Army culture also plays a huge role in the success of those who are trying to learn what it really means and takes to be a professional in the Army. This is achieved through having a good cultural/Command climate. Cultural climate dictates the professionalism of Soldiers. For example: toxic leadership leads young professionals to forget the values they were taught to display and they revert to this mindset of “nobody cares”, so why should they. This attitude and climate is driven entirely through the Command of the organization, which the Soldier is a part of. Having a positive Command climate allows Soldiers to keep the best interest of the organization in the forefront and allows them to display professionalism that is so vital to the organization they represent.
Understanding the why and how we fight allows young professionals to take on the responsibility of maintaining the professionalism of the Army. Leaders (professionals) must convey the importance of why and how we fight as well. Soldiers fight through using moral judgments, applying principles of ethic and instilling the Army professional values and virtues in their character. They are doing their job, defending human rights. Using the tools they have learned will allow them to progress and teach others the way to be a professional in the Army.
In conclusion, The Army and the members of this great organization display all the characteristics of profession. The name Army rings with pride and honor and courteousness. Soldiers and their leadership all are striving for one goal and that is to display the Army in a good light, so those who they encounter will without a doubt say “the Army is a profession.” With continued effort, practice and discipline Soldiers will make the Army what it is, which is a profession, a lifestyle, and not a just a job.