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Engagement is considered one of the most important parts of working with a client. Coady and Lehmann (2008) consider engagement the first of four steps in the problem solving model of social work. Engagement can begin as early as the first over the phone contact or referral notification with the client. To become aware of the client’s background (ecology and life circumstances) is crucial part of this stage. It is also important for the social worker to become in tune with their own thoughts and beliefs when coming into contact with this client for the first time. After tuning into the client it is key for any social worker to make a client feel welcomed with a sense of warmth, empathy and respect. Too much empathy and warm, however, can be detrimental to the course of service provision. Coady and Lehmann (2008) note that the engagement process is never ending and can continue well into counseling.
As a client, being welcomed with warmth and empathy is of the utmost importance. Being welcomed into an office with a cold handshake and a gesture to take a seat in a cold plastic…