First of all,
What does professionalism mean in the creative industry? In times not long gone by, most in the industries were self-taught, gotten into the industry through their own drive to get there, but today, most are able to learn what they need in the industry in education, universities and colleges have started teaching people what they need to know to attain a level of expertise above that of the average person. It also means structure, in an industry where people used to just get together in a garage and spend time creating a game together until it was ready, things have now moved on to multi-million dollar companies, with large teams of people in an organised hierarchy, companies know now that they are providing a vital service for the people of the world, the entertainment industry brings happiness and fun to many and therefor those inside of it are held to a high standard so that they can continue to provide this service for the betterment of society.
How do you do this? Joseph Migga Kizza said in his book, Ethics in Computing, that professionalism is characterised by four things. Commitment, integrity, responsibility and accountability. Commitment is highly important as while it is a creative industry, you still have a job to do and a service to provide. You cannot give up at the first sign of trouble and, in fact, the sign of a good professional is one who can continue on through those troubles and carry out his work, improving himself as he does. Integrity is key as well, you cannot take shortcuts, or take the easy path if it means tarnishing what you are doing. People must be able to trust you and if you lose your integrity, what else do they have to believe that what you say and do are true? Responsibility plays into this, being honest is important as in owning up to what you do, whether it is right or wrong. In the creative industry you have a responsibility to perform the best of your ability and create a product that is of the standard expected by your customers and users. Finally, accountability. No matter what happens in the end, if it was by your hand, you are accountable for the outcome. This is not a bad thing however, if you are a shining pillar of professionalism, you will be held accountable, and rewarded for being so.