My Top 8 Professional Must Haves

 What are those things that keep you going currently in your profession? These are my top 8 professional must haves.

Staying on top of the game in our professions is important if we want to advance and to develop into who God wants us to be. To truly live out our calling it’s important to know those things that are important to you and important within your profession. Those things that take priority for you to be able to grow and sustain in your career are important. Here’s a list of a few things that are lifelines for me in my profession. 

Professional organization membership

Being apart of a professional organization provides us with such great tools its well worth the money we pay for them. It provides opportunities to network, gain personal growth, professional growth, job opportunities and helps you gain a fresh perspective. I have been apart of professional organization since I was in college. However, I didn’t learn the value of being apart of one until I was in my profession for about 5 years. The education I gained while being apart helped me to take my professional skill set to another level. It is important to be involved in those organizations as well as being apart of them. Its not enough to pay your dues on a monthly basis. Its important to be involved to get the full value. 

Leadership books

Early on in my career, I wanted to do more in my profession, but I didn’t know where to start. One of my collegues recommended I spoke with someone she knew in HR. I had a conversation with her and I told her that I wanted to grow my leadership skills. She then said to me if that is the route you want to take then you need to read books about that skill to build it up. From there I went on to read several leadership books. However, I am going to only name my top 3 and will save my top ten for another post/podcast (be on the look out for that). 

No Ego by Cy Wakeman– This book is based on the reality-based leadership concepts that drama is the leading waste in the organization and we get rid of it by checking our ego. When people vent they are venting from their ego and it brings forth waste and leaves the manager to deal with the result. People need to state the issue but also in stating the issue do a bit of self-reflection to see their part in the process and how they can help the situation. 

Leadership Gold by John Maxwell- John Maxwell uses this book to summarize his leadership experiences. Every experience is a chapter in the book. The chapter that stood out to me was chapter 5: Never work a day in your life. It resonated with me because I believe that we should get to a point of finding our passion which almost always lines up with our calling. Once you get to that sweet spot its easier to drown out all to the other noise and politics that comes with an actual job. 

The Florence Prescription from Accountability to Ownership: Manifesto for a Positive Healthcare Culture- This book is based on the fact that you cannot make anyone be accountable, but if you treat employees as owners it will lead to a level of accountability to follow through and therefore build a better culture. One main example, I remember from this book is the concept of helping people to see how they are owners. It discussed the notion that if you are renting a car, you pick it up sparkling clean and looking fresh. You don’t care about making sure the oil is changed or the air filters are changed so that you have a longer lasting car. You are a renter and not an owner. That is the same way people look at their job if you don’t pull them in as owners. They are only going to do the bare minimum because they are just renting that space before moving on to the next job. They are not invested. Are you a renter or are you an owner? 

Black or Blue suit

Our first impression matters as much as your overall impression. When going for a job interview or to a meeting, we need to put our best foot forward, dress to impress. A blue or black suit will do that easily. We need to make it easy for people to see our great characteristics and skills and not be captivated by what we are wearing. You want your actions to speak louder than your outfit. It doesn’t matter what people tell you. Unless you are working in an extremely creative environment. It is still a good idea to invest in a suit. 

Good Planner

We need to stay organized and a good planner will help with that. I struggle with buying planners but not using them. I feel like there should be a help group for that. However at the end of the day, I still come back to it because I need it to stay organized. 


Who ever told you I’ll rest when I’m dead lied to you. Its not worth you not getting good rest. Good rest helps your mind to flow better and gives your body the endurance it needs. That rest also brings creativity. It helps your mind to free itself and opens you up to creative thoughts. 

Yearly or BiYearly Conference

Conferences are the lifeline in our professions. They give us that renew sense of purpose that we need to feel. They give us that pat on the back that we may not get from anywhere else that says you matter and the work you do matters. It also gives you confirmation that you are not the only one dealing with the issues you are dealing with. It provides opportunities for you to connect with others to find new ways of overcoming different issues. 

A Mentor

A mentor is someone who has walked in your shoes and is willing pull you along, walk beside you and show you to ropes. They are there to be your sounding board. They help you sift through what is feeling and what is fact. If you have someone whom you think is a mentor to you or could be a mentor they need to have those characteristics above. Iron sharpens Iron. So if they are not sharpening your iron and only allowing you to stay in a place of pouting then they are not your mentor. Find you a good mentor to help you find your place in your profession. 

The Bible and a Prayer life

Last but certainly not least, this is my foundation. The word of God and prayer time with God is where I get my guidance. It’s where I find rest and rejuvenation when I am weary and frustrated in my profession. It’s where I go to find out what’s my next move in my profession or not my next move. This is a must have for me. 

These are the things I can’t live without in my professional life. Professional organizations, Leadership books, Black/Blue suit, Good Planner, Rest, a conference, a mentor, prayer and the Bible are just a few things on my list. What are those things you can’t live without? Think about those things. Is it listed above? Or are there other things that help you to grow and stay relevant in your profession?

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