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Addiction Counselor Professional Readiness

With the launch of our latest online class – Professional Readiness – it is worth exploring what professional readiness is and what it means. Within an organization, deeming a professional ready is a job for a supervisor and readiness varies between counselors and their roles within the facility. Readiness can, after all, mean very different things to different clients and programs.

Professional readiness does have several core principles that transcend location, personality and education of the counselor.

  • Confidentiality. Every counselor must understand that confidentiality is paramount in this business. Confidentiality is so important, not only because it is a legal requirement defined by the now ubiquitous HIPAA, but because it is the foundation of trust between the client and their counselor and facility.
  • Boundaries. Boundaries are easily blurred, bent and breached in today’s “small world.” Counselors have more opportunity than ever to act inappropriately, even inadvertently. Understanding the importance of setting boundaries and effectively communicating them to the client is of great importance.
  • Communication. Whether it is building trust, gathering information, managing a crisis or managing an escalating situation, counselors will rely on their communications skills daily. Remember that it is not just how we speak, but how we listen and our body language that comprises the foundation of effective communication.
  • Supervision. The importance of a good supervisor and supervisory policy cannot be overstated. Counselors must be able to rely on supervisors to guide them through the intricacies of legal and ethical dilemmas that crop up on a regular basis. No two clients are the same and sometimes we just need help.

Professional Readiness is as much a state of mind as it is completion of education and training. Professionals in our industry must be attuned to their own limitations and handle them appropriately to ensure the best outcome for the client. Learn more about Professional Readiness and take our online classes.