pro·​fes·​sion·​al·​ism prə-ˈfesh-nə-ˌli-zəm How to pronounce professionalism (audio)
: the conduct, aims, or qualities that characterize or mark a profession or a professional person
: the following of a profession (such as athletics) for gain or livelihood

Examples of professionalism in a Sentence

For writers such as Alexander Pope and Samuel Johnson, struggling in the transition from the age of patronage to that of Grub Street professionalism, Shakespeare offered not only a body of poetic invention but also an inspirational career trajectory. Jonathan Bate, Harper's, April 2007
In Washington, careerism has so trumped professionalism among political journalists as to render Alterman's ethical concerns almost quaint. Gene Lyons, Harper's, October 2003
It is difficult not to contrast the professionalism of modestly paid firefighters and police doing their duty on September 11 with the secretive … behavior of six- and seven-figure accountants, lawyers, CEOs, bankers, and financial analysts who failed at their duty with Enron. Bruce Nussbaum, Business Week, 28 Jan. 2002
A high level of professionalism is expected when working with clients. She is highly respected for her professionalism.
Recent Examples on the Web Share [Findings] Online murder-for-hire advertisements seek to convey professionalism yet tend not to provide references up front. Rafil Kroll-Zaidi, Harper's Magazine, 8 Nov. 2023 When dressing for work, Levesque highlights the importance of dressing authentically for oneself, much like the company’s name, while striking a balance between personal style and maintaining professionalism. Maia Torres, Vogue, 6 Nov. 2023 Moreover, Tina consistently exudes professionalism in her office attire, often seen in collared shirts and coordinated sets that include a dress paired with a short-sleeve jacket. Robyn Mowatt, Essence, 19 Oct. 2023 Although his competitors present themselves, by contrast, as models of ethical professionalism, Gagosian appears unimpressed. Sebastian Smee, Washington Post, 22 Sep. 2023 This leaves the career bereft of its sense of gravity and professionalism. Svetlana Khachiyan, USA TODAY, 2 Sep. 2023 That Metheny persevered and somehow still delivered an often-sublime performance is a testimony to his artistry and professionalism. George Varga, San Diego Union-Tribune, 30 Oct. 2023 The top three skills employers say candidates most lack, as revealed during interviews, are time management, professionalism, and critical thinking. Byjane Thier, Fortune, 11 Oct. 2023 Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs are handling the Taylor Swift era with professionalism, the team's President Mark Donovan tells PEOPLE. Skyler Caruso, Peoplemag, 6 Oct. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'professionalism.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1856, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of professionalism was in 1856

Dictionary Entries Near professionalism

Cite this Entry

“Professionalism.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 29 Nov. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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