A professional is a person who is paid to undertake a specialized set of tasks and to complete them for a fee. The traditional professions were doctors, engineers, lawyers, architects and commissioned military officers. Today, the term is applied to nurses, accountants, educators, scientists, technology experts, social workers, artists, librarians (information professionals) and many more.
The term is also used in sports to differentiate amateur players from those who are paid—hence "professional footballer" and "professional golfer". Many companies include the word professional in their store name to imply the quality of their workmanship or service.
In some cultures, the term is used as shorthand to describe a particular social stratum of well-educated, salaried workers who enjoy considerable work autonomy and are commonly engaged in creative and intellectually challenging work.
Due to the personal and confidential nature of many professional services, and thus the necessity to place a great deal of trust in them, most professionals are subject to strict codes of conduct enshrining rigorous ethical and moral obligations.
Famous quotes containing the word professional:
“If Id written all the truth I knew for the past ten years, about 600 peopleincluding mewould be rotting in prison cells from Rio to Seattle today. Absolute truth is a very rare and dangerous commodity in the context of professional journalism.”
—Hunter S. Thompson (b. 1939)
“I sometimes wonder whether, in the still, sleepless hours of the night, the consciences of ... professional gossips do not stalk them. I myself believe in a final reckoning, when we shall be held accountable for our misdeeds. Do they? If so, they have cause to worry over many scoops that brought them a days dubious laurels and perhaps destroyed someones peace forever.”
—Mary Pickford (18931979)
“I hate the whole race.... There is no believing a word they sayyour professional poets, I meanthere never existed a more worthless set than Byron and his friends for example.”
—Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke Wellington (17691852)