The results of last week’s survey, asking whether business valuation is an “industry” or a “profession,” came out resoundingly in favor of the latter, 92% to 8%. Predictable, perhaps, but the comments provided the surprises, insights—and intelligence:
- I concur that business valuation is a profession. However…the Standard Industrial Codes consider ALL professions as industries.
- If it has an SIC or NAICS code, it’s an industry…After all, an industry is a group of competitors delivering similar output to similar elements in the same target market…This ain’t rocket science.
- The major difference between an industry and a profession is that [the latter] has a code of ethics.
- [The distinction between product/service] is off the mark. Is the teenager who cuts my lawn engaging in a ‘profession’?...A profession is characterized as a vocation based on a written body of knowledge, with recognized ethical standards.
“We are a relatively ‘immature’ profession,” another commented, and cited this “legal” definition:
[A profession is] a calling requiring specialized knowledge and often long and intensive preparation, including instruction in skills and methods as well as in the scientific, historical, or scholarly principles underlying such skill and methods, maintaining by force of organization or concerted opinion high standards of achievement and conduct, and committing its members to continued study and to…work which has for its prime purpose the rendering of a public service.” Lawyers Title Insurance v. Hoffman (Neb. 1994).
Given the divergence of opinion, we’re keeping the lines open for another week; please take a few moments to cast your vote and add your voice to the survey.
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