The Professionalism Guide Part 2: Ethics

April 4, 2017

The Professionalism Guide Part 2: Ethics

This is the second part in a multi-part series on Professionalism. If you haven’t already, read Part 1 here. 

Ethics are concepts of right and wrong. Some decisions are easy to make ethically, while others require a conversation with your coworkers, your managers and support system. Ethics are an important part of professionalism, and here’s why.

Employees—and medical employees, specifically—are expected to stick to a code of ethics. Most facilities have a written code of ethics for you to follow, and of course, there’s always the Hippocratic oath. But even if your company doesn’t have a written code, you should come up with your own ethical guidelines in order to build your reputation for professionalism.

To help guide you, here’s a helpful list of ethical Do’s and Don’ts.

Ethical Do’s:

  • DO be honest. Never lie or create stories to make yourself look better.
  • DO admit mistakes. Not only is this the right choice ethically, it will also make you look much better to your supervisor or manager than if you falsely blame someone else for your mess-up.
  • DO be respectful to all people. No matter how difficult a coworker or patient is being, you always need to show them respect. Never talk down to people or try to make them feel inferior.

Ethical Don’ts

  • DON’T gossip, share secrets, spread rumors or speak negatively about coworkers. Not only is this unethical, but it makes you look bad.
  • DON’T blame others. Even if your coworkers did make a mistake, passing around blame never solves the problem. Work on solutions instead.
  • DON’T falsify time cards or other documents. If you’re late, you’re late. Don’t try to cover yourself by being dishonest.
  • DON’T lie, cheat or steal. These are general ethics, and they count in every aspect of your life—including your work.

Many ethical dilemmas aren’t easy or straightforward. It can be tough to make the right choices at work, but it’s important that you show ethics in all aspects of your professional life. Your decisions help set the tone for the company’s culture. Do you want to have a hand in creating a negative culture that supports gossiping and stealing—or do you want to set a good example by being honest and respectful?

Now that you know a little bit about building a code of ethics, we’ll explain how to build a professional reputation on social media. Stay tune for The Professionalism Guide Part 3: Social Media.


About the Author

is an award-winning writer and journalist with years of experience within the healthcare and education space. She has contributed to dozens of periodicals, publications and blogs, and she specializes in providing well-researched and thought-provoking content.

The views expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Ultimate Medical Academy.

The UMA Blog covers information and advice for employers and workers at the intersection of healthcare, education and employment. Our contributors are intimately familiar with a wide range of subjects covering professional development, career advancement, workplace politics, healthcare industry specific topics, personal finance, education and so much more. Learn what you need to get ahead and stay ahead.

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