To practice a profession one must have acquired mastery of an academic discipline as well as a technique for applying this special knowledge to the problems of everyday life. A profession is therefore intellectual in content, practical in application.” – H. G. Rickover
There isn’t one accepted profession that seems to appropriately “fit” what it means to be someone who is driving change. Whatever the profession is or should be called, I can wholeheartedly agree with Admiral Rickover’s statement that a profession is both intellectual and practical. You need to know something and then you need to do something with that knowledge.
And, if you subscribe to Peter Senge’s description of personal mastery then you won’t read “acquired mastery of an academic discipline” in the narrow sense of “got a degree in X all those years ago,” but rather as a continuous building upon past learning toward greater intellectual mastery which then provides the ideas to carry forward to greater practical mastery in application. Keep learning. Keep doing. You’ll be a professional.
Now, even if other people don’t know what to call you as you drive change, be sure to take the job seriously, and act as a professional anyway. Study. Apply. Study more. Apply more. Keep driving. Keeping winning. If they have to call you something, let them call you great for all you’ve accomplished.
Join me in the ranks of the professionals.
Why not try?