5 Characteristics of a Great Therapist

You need to hire a new therapist to join your team, but you don’t want just anyone. The person you choose will have a profound impact on your clients, so you’re willing to take the time to find the perfect fit. 

Plenty of professionals have the qualities on paper to be successful in a therapy role, but some people are more effective than others.

Here’s a look at five traits that make a therapist genuinely great. 


Patients share their deepest feelings with their therapist. No matter what these issues are, it’s crucial for the therapist to treat them with compassion and understanding. If patients feel like they’re not being heard, they’ll leave their appointments feeling frustrated. This will likely stunt their progress and cause them to seek care elsewhere. 

Problem-Solving Skills 

When people have a problem they can’t solve on their own, they seek help from a therapist. Therefore, it’s important for a therapist to have the skills needed to rise to the occasion. While they can’t solve their patients’ issues, they are expected to provide them with the tools needed to work them out. Discussing their problems is certainly part of the solution, but a great therapist will also push them to make progress at every appointment.  


No two patients are the same. While therapists might have general guidelines they use to help patients dealing with certain situations, they need to understand there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all solution. A great therapist never gives up. If one approach doesn’t work with a patient, they’ll keep trying until something resonates. The ability to change course on a dime is a must because sticking to one treatment plan just because it worked for someone else will not help patients. 

Ability to Focus 

Beyond their jobs, therapists are people with real lives. It can be hard for some people to turn off what’s happening in their life and focus on the patient in front of them, but this is a must. Patients go to therapy to talk to a professional about their problems and seek help in finding a resolution. If their therapist isn’t fully present, they won’t get the attention they deserve. This will make them feel slighted and will almost certainly cause them to seek care elsewhere. 

Interpersonal Skills 

The most effective therapists can get patients to share the most intimate details of their lives. This is a special gift everyone doesn’t have, so keep searching until you find someone who does. If therapists are unable to build a rapport with patients, they’ll guard the information they’re sharing. This will make therapy sessions largely ineffective because they won’t be getting to the root of the problem. Finding a therapist people trust is a must because opening up to them will feel natural.  

Choosing the right therapist for your team is a very time-consuming task, but you don’t have to steer this search on your own. To learn more about how we can help you find top behavioral health talent, contact us today at (513) 651-9500 or by email at info@psychpros.com. 

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