How to Ace Phone Consultations

The initial call can determine whether a client comes to see you or not. It’s your opportunity to impress!

Leading up to the call

  • Email back to confirm you received the phone consult notice: e.g. “I look forward to speaking!” 

  • If the time doesn’t work for you, you can reschedule by emailing the client directly [email address in initial confirmation]

  • Feel free to give the client a call sooner than the scheduled time, e.g. the day they scheduled the call.

Ace the call

  • Ask questions that make the individual feel comfortable and heard. Examples:

    • Why are you considering therapy now?
    • Have you been in therapy before?

    • What are you looking for in a therapist?
    • What has worked in the past and what hasn’t?

    • What does [depression/ anxiety / substance abuse] looks like for you?

    • What insurance do you have?

    • Do you have other therapists you’re talking to or do you want to schedule an in-person appointment?  (This gives an opportunity for clients to decline scheduling an in-person appointment respectfully, while also making it known you have their best interests in mind!)
  • Be flexible: some clients will be more willing to discuss what is going on for them on the phone, while others prefer face-to-face.

  • Remember that clients have different degrees of experience with therapy, so tailor your call appropriately.


  • If you’re unavailable immediately but you think you might be a good fit, offer to place the client on a waitlist. We’ve heard of so many instances where clinicians keep a waitlist, call back the client 3 months later, and the client still would like to come see that therapist!

  • If the client is not a good fit for you due to insurance or scheduling challenges, please direct them back to or and we can help them get connected to an excellent provider.

Reduce cancellation / no-shows

  • Cancellation / no-show rates can be high for the initial appointment.

  • Text or email clients 1) a confirmation, and 2) a reminder the day before whenever possible!