Thursday, October 18, 2007

Massage Therapist: Qualities Sought by Employers

A large percentage of therapists will choose to work for others, rather than going into business for themselves, especially right out of school. To be successful, it is important to understand what can be expected in different work environments. I recently sat down with a manager from a large massage center. With almost 20 massage therapists on staff, I was interested in her insights about managing therapists. When asked what would be the top three qualities she would look for in a potential therapist, she listed the following;

1. Communication Skills

Proper communication should begin the second a therapist receives a client into their care until they are transferred to the front desk or the next service. Communication can be broken into three sections; the intake, the session and the transfer. Each section requires thorough, well thought-out client communication to ensure a highly satisfied client.

2. Professionalism

Many employers will have standards in place to create a professional consistent experience for clients. These standards can involve attire, tattoos, hair styles and hygiene. If seeking employment, a therapist should inquire about these standards to ensure they are in alignment with what they are comfortable with. The purpose of standards is not to inhibit personal style, but to deliver to the expectation of the client as determined by the business servicing them.

3. Going Above and Beyond

In her words, this means demonstrating professional “extra interest” in a client. Examples include; taking time to recommend alternative options for pain relief, books of interest for subjects discussed and demonstration of care through remembering previous conversations. These examples demonstrate a level of service most clients will not experience during other interactions with businesses they frequent.

If seeking employment with a massage provider, make a point to ask them during the interview what are the most important qualities they look for in potential employees.

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