Friday, June 08, 2012

... on being a "management professional"

Some years back - 25-yrs on into the “management profession” – I gradually realized three things:

  • 1. the term “management school” got hijacked by “business school” during last couple of decades in India. This critically reduced the scope of what the “management professionals” can do in terms of managing/leveraging resources to make a meaningful contribution to society

  • 2. other “professionals”, e.g., doctors, lawyers, etc., remain professionals even when they move out of their chambers (you still ask for their advise when you meet in a party, etc.)… but not so with “management professionals” – they become just like any ordinary citizens, once they move out of their chambers/ narrow corporate campus/roles

  • 3. besides the two meanings of “profession” – (1) mastery over certain specialized skills or body of knowledge, and (2) membership to a community who possess those skills or knowledge – the fundamental and distinctive meaning of the term “profession” (and specially in the context of people-focused helping professions) revolves around the self-acknowledged “public/social role” of the professional. The term “profess” is made up of the Latin prefix pro, which means "forward," or "into a public position," and fess, which derives from the Latin fateri or fass and means "to confess, own, acknowledge."…i.e., the original meaning of profession is "a personal form of public acknowledgment." OR being a professional is public role

    … this realization raised some soul-searching questions – and led to a course called Intro to Social Entrepreneurship..

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