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Trisha Wilcox

on 4 April 2016

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Transcript of Interviewing

The Ins & Outs of the Social Work Method
What would you do?
"The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches, but to reveal them their own." - Benjamin Disraeli
Building Rapport & Basic Interpersonal Skills



A Social Worker's Skill Set

Active Listening
Asking Questions
Readiness & Motivation
Setting Goals
Cultural Competency
Professionalism, Responsibility & Ethics
Self-Disclosure & Boundaries
Client- Driven Practice
When is use of self appropriate and useful vs. inappropriate and taking away from the client?
Imperative to know your biases (i.e. strong political opinions)
What are you willing to share?
When is the appropriate time to share?
Why are boundaries important?
Some of these connect to various ethical responsibilities
i.e. 4.01 Competence, 4.04 Honesty/Deception,
4.05 Impairment (personal issues),
5.01 Integrity of Profession
(NASW, 2008; Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013)
Client-driven or directed practice can be summed up in a few ways...
client is the master of their own direction
no one knows you better than.... yourself
Strengths-Based Perspective
Everybody has them, just have to use them
Aids a person to benefit themselves in society
Acts as a tool - self-protective measures
Focus on what you do well, you can do more than focusing on deficits
This perspective acts as a paradigm that molds the way social workers think about and interact with people
(Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013; McCullough & Snyder, 2000)
1.07 Privacy & Confidentiality: Myths & Realities
Client confidentiality is upheld with
You may never disclose client personal information, unless it is from a court order
You should inform the client about the nature of confidentiality and what that means
If a client passes away, confidentiality can be voided in order to communicate with other agencies about necessary information
In teaching and training, you may disclose client information; confidentiality extends to all social workers
Clients have complete access to personal file and all of your personal notes pertaining to that file
In group therapy or family sessions, the social worker sets the standard for confidentiality, but must inform the group that they can not insure this is followed by all individual members
If a court order is drawn and disclosure is not in the client's best interest, social workers should request that the court withdraw the order to limit it as narrowly as possible
When a client presents with an issue or concern that he/she would like to change, using the Stages of Change model to explore the issue or concern with the client is a great way to assess readiness and initiate healthy change
This model provides a framework for understanding different phases in the change process (Chang et al., 2013).
Clients will present in different stages of readiness,
and some clients will require more intervention than
Stages of Change
5 Stages...
Clients that hope to quit smoking
Ending unhealthy relationships
Exploring other career opportunities
.... can be easily implemented in interviewing
The five stages of readiness and provides a framework for understanding the change process are both behavioral and cognitive
1. Precontemplation - no current intent to change
2. Contemplation - ambivalent,
weighing pros and cons to change
3. Preparation - ready to take some
4. Action - making change, modifying
5. Maintenance - relapse prevention
(Chang et al., 2013)
(Chang et al., 2013)
What is it?
The ability to experience a client's story or situation as if it were your own experience
Different from sympathy
Not about feeling the same thing, but rather the true sense of emotions, experiences and thoughts
(DeJong & Berg, 2012)
Why is this Important?
The Catch...
How do we Show it?
Empathy builds trust and rapport
Helps the client to feel understood & helps them to engage even more
Listening skills
Nonverbal, affirming responses (i.e. head nod, or brief comments)
Reflection, paraphrasing or checking in
" I hear you saying that you're mad, frustrated and confused..."
"So you're uncomfortable with the way your boss is treating you and you would like to find a workable solution, is that correct?"
(Ivey, Ivey & Zalaquett, 2014)
Reflecting and paraphrasing can often sound insincere
People tend to prefer "natural listeners" to "active listeners"
Being authentic and genuine is key!
Comes with practice and integrating these skills into a personal style
Empathy can be thought of as a separate skill, but it is inseparable from the others described
Absence of empathy is noticeable
(Bavelas, McGee, Phillips & Routledge, 2000; DeJong & Berg, 2012)
Ask Questions Like a Social Worker
Goal –oriented; Solution-Focused; focus on the positives
Method - using different types of questions - becomes skill
The way a question is asked i.e.: voice inflection, body language
Common Mistakes of Questioning...
Asking more than one question at a time or multiple choice
Avoid rapid-fire questioning (which feels like interrogation)
Using questions to persuade
Questions that begin with “why” can cause people to become defensive
Types of Questions
Closed-Ended Questions
Narrows the clients focus
great for keeping client on subject matter
(i.e. Do you watch the Big Bang Theory?)
Open-Ended Questions
Broad and require more than one or two word answers
Gets client to open up, give specifics
Learn client’s attitudes, thoughts, feelings, & perceptions
Allows client to be experts
(Chang, Scott, & Decker)
Scaling Questions
Clarifying Questions
Informational Questions
Measures progress and explore future steps to take, and assess motivation/willingness
(i.e. On a scale from 1 to 10, How important is it to catch the newest episode of big bang theory?)
Ensure you understand the client’s perceptions and what they are saying
When clarifying, echo or incorporate the clients own wording
Allow new information to be given to the client and then ask the clients opinion
Preferred Future Questions
Alt. Perspective Questions
The "Miracle" Question
Solution focused model: explores the client’s goals and their plans for the future- ensures the goals are client-directed
Solution focused: helps gain the client’s perspective of another person in the situation and may provide holistic viewpoints
Solution focused: helps client recognize how they want their lives to be as you work with them
(DeJong & Berg, 2013)
(DeJong & Berg, 2013)
Changing Demographics
By 2050:
Hispanic population will double
Asian population increase by 80%
Caucasian population decrease by 6%
(Chang, Scott & Decker, 2009)
Personal Awareness
Ongoing Education
Reserving Judgement
(Chang, Scott & Decker, 2009)
Cultural Competency
Integration with Social Work Values, Culture & Interviewing
An ethical responsibility to clients
Dignity of Client
Teacher-Learner Idea
Critical Race Theory
Is color-blindness the answer?
Cultural Humility
(Abrams & Mojo, 2013; NASW, 2008)
Self-care plays an important role in active listening
Focus on client only
Avoid distracting/nervous behaviors
Be aware of differing communication styles (circular, narrative, fast-paced)
Minimal Encouragers
Listening involves hearing words & understanding the meaning behind them
Understand the implications behind the client’s words
When a client feels listened to, a sense of trust is built
Clients can detect when you are distracted
Silence is okay - selective silence
Conveys actively listening, allowing the client to feel comfortable to open up
Expresses warmth
Repeating last words or saying "I understand"
(Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013)
Body Language
Integrate other skills to communicate understanding...
Ask questions
Maintain eye contact (but consider cultural differences)
Be aware of facial expressions and make sure they are congruent with the situation
Head nods, hand gestures
Be comfortable
(Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013)
Relation marked by harmony, conformity, accord, or affinity
Builds confidence and trust between the client and counselor
Gradually grows over time
Building with Clients
Enhances your ability to gather information
Increases your ability to manage the course of counseling
Keeps the client coming back
(Morrison, 1993)
Basic Skills
Remain professional, yet personable
Introduce yourself
Provide comfortable environment
Be familiar with the client’s case
Appear relaxed, interested and understanding.
Do not appear rushed
Be aware of body language
Maintain frequent eye contact

Why is this important?
Goals set the direction and focus of what work needs to be done by both the practitioner and the client
Setting goals is a necessary task in planning steps to be taken, reviewing and evaluating progress, and deciding when to end the relationship between the practitioner and client
These can look different for everyone
Setting goals requires a clear understanding of the problem
Goals need to be mutually established
Don’t direct or choose goals for the client
Use questions that seek clarification, such as open-ended questions
What would a perfect outcome look like?
In five years, where do you hope to be?
Use exception finding questions to help the client focus on times the problem wasn’t present
Think of a time when you didn’t have his problem… What were you doing, thinking, feeling at that time?
(DeJong & Berg, 2012; Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013).
(DeJong & Berg, 2012; Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013).
M = Measurable

Takes into account clients life, narrows focus & makes possible
A = Attainable
Able to accomplish is critical, set appropriate goals
P = Positive

Identifies positive behaviors, doesnt ignore the issue, encourages the positive
S = Specific
Clear and meaningful, client-directed, builds respect
(DeJong & Berg, 2012; Chang, Scott & Decker, 2013).
With a new lens, let's critique...
Full transcript