When sending your Sims to work Professions, you may be required to "Help" an Important Sim. Important Sims include any customers who appear with the "?" mark above their heads.
Fulfilling customer requests from Important customers is known as fulfilling a "Special Request" where the resources will be randomly generated but will give you more than a standard request. You can complete these requests to acquire badges or level your Sims up in the Hospital, Police Station or Movie Studio Professions.
Important Sims also include the SimTown Market Courier.
For more information on professions check out our guide here: Professions: The New Career.