To be told you are being bureaucratic is not usually meant as a compliment. Being professional, on the other hand, carries more than a hint that you are behaving intelligently, independently, and well. Social workers aspire to be professionals but very often find themselves dismissed as bureaucrats. Much of what social workers do hovers interestingly, even awkwardly between following the rules and thinking on your feet. To be a good bureaucrat is to follow the rules. A good professional has no problem thinking on her feet.
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