Once you complete your training for a career as a massage therapist, you might think the hard part is done. The truth is you still have to put your new skills to work, which means learning how to market yourself. Job interviews allow you and your future employer to assess how well your talents match their needs.
Much like you would for a big exam, you should study and prepare for an interview. Below are 15 questions you may encounter at a job interview for your new role as a massage therapist.
Job Interview Tips for Massage Therapists
Before you even think about what questions an interviewer might ask, you need to get prepared for your interview. These tips will help put you on the right path.
Know the Laws in Your Area
The first step is to find out what you need to qualify as a massage therapist. In most states, you need a license. If your state requires licensure, you’ll want to have obtained that before your first interview. At the very least, have the process started and be waiting for your license when you go.
Put Together a Professional Look for the Interview
Keep in mind that they may ask for a demonstration after the interview portion of the meeting, so you want to be dressed to work. Wear shoes and clothes that are appropriate to give a massage.
Make sure to dress a little better than you would for your job when sitting for the interview, though. For example, you might add a jacket to your ensemble to make it more professional-looking. By dressing in layers, you ensure you make your best first impression and show you are ready to work.
If you are unsure if you will have to do a massage as part of the interview, ask. If in doubt, dress in business casual clothing that you can work in, if necessary.
Also, be well-groomed. Your nails should be cut and nicely kept. If your hair is long, pull it back in a professional style. A potential employer will want to see that you are well-kempt.
Do Your Homework
You should go to the interview with a thorough knowledge of the job and the company. If possible, ask who you will be interviewing with when you make the appointment. When you show up for the meeting, make it clear that you know who you will be talking to and understand the job requirements.
As part of that, make sure you meet the requirements listed by the employer. You don’t want to get there and find out they expect you to have five years of experience before getting the job. That will be disappointing and a waste of time for you both.
Let Your Personality Shine
Being personable is essential in the massage therapy business. Because your attitude and demeanor may either attract or repel clients, this is something that an employer will look for. Most firms want to recruit someone they believe will be an asset to the team.
Being enthusiastic about what you do and the people you help will undoubtedly get you recognized. During your interview, emphasize how passionate you are about becoming a massage therapist and working with your customers. When someone is enthusiastic about their objective, it is easier to say yes and hire them.
15 Questions Employers Ask Massage Therapists
The more you know about what the interviewer might ask, the better. Here are some common interview questions they may ask you:
1. What Formal Training Do You Have in Massage Therapy?
Bring to the interview information about the massage school you attended, your training, and when you graduated. They may also want to know about the clinical experience you received at the school and what you have been doing since graduation. Also, talk about any previous experience you have that might help you in this role.
2. Why Do You Want This Job?
This is where your knowledge of the interviewer and company will be an advantage. When doing your research, look for things that resonate with you. For example, if you apply at a spa, maybe make an appointment for a massage there yourself to get a feel for the place.
You can use that experience when answering the question. Tell them why this job is a good fit for you.
3. What is Your Availability?
Be honest when answering this question but understand that you will probably need open and flexible availability. However, you don’t want to get the job and then end up with conflicts that impact your ability to maintain it. That will reflect poorly on your career.
Check the facility’s webpage for hours of operation. It should give you an understanding of what is expected of you. Try to be flexible in your response.
4. What Massage Techniques Have You Studied?
This question is critical because employers, especially spas and resorts, often offer a variety of massage techniques—research what this employer offers or what is expected in that industry. A spa may have different offerings than a rehabilitation center, for example.
5. What Types of Massage Do You Enjoy Doing?
If you’ve done your research, you can name one or two that they offer.
6. What Types of Massages Do You Prefer Not to Do and Why?
This question is a bit tricky. Again, you want to research the potential employer and avoid saying the massage they do the most. If there is a massage technique you don’t prefer and it is a particular business’s bread and butter, ask yourself if the job is really for you.
7. What Made You Want to be a Massage Therapist?
Just answer this question honestly. Before going to school, you probably put some thought into it, so what pushed you in that direction?
8. What Do You Enjoy Most About Being a Massage Therapist?
Speak from your heart and tell the interviewer how much you like your job. It might be the serene and pleasant environment, the opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives of others, the flexibility of working hours, or the chance to connect with your clients.
9. What Are Your Professional Goals?
This is a common question interviewers ask in most industries. Talk about moving up in the company or one day owning your own business. You might also discuss going back for more study to expand your skills.
10. How Would You Handle a Fussy Client? How About an Inappropriate One?
The interviewer will want to know that you can handle a variety of circumstances and can use good judgment with clients. They also want to know that you can follow their rules for managing clients.
11. How Many Massages Can You Do in One Shift?
Massage therapists conducting many sessions throughout their shift are essential in busy franchises and spas. Don’t be surprised if your job interviewer asks how many massages you can comfortably do in a row.
The potential employer is getting helpful information for scheduling by asking this question. Spa owners and managers want to ensure that new and existing workers can manage their appointment calendars without sacrificing service quality. They may arrange work more effectively if they understand the physical constraints of therapists.
12. How Do You Interact with Your Clients During Massages?
Most employers look for therapists that can bring in clients to their practice. They want to know you are a people person able to build a rapport that leads to repeat visits. Be careful not to overstep, though. They may prefer that there isn’t a lot of chatter during the massage so that the client can relax.
13. What Makes You a Good Massage Therapist?
The interviewer wants to understand your confidence level and why you like the job.
14. Describe What You Might Do During a New Client Assessment
This goes back to figuring out how well you work with clients. You can also benefit here from getting a massage yourself. You can see how they approach new client assessments and use that information to answer this question.
15. If You Were an Animal, What Would You Be?
This isn’t a trick question. It gives the interviewer another way to get to know you and see if you are a good fit. Don’t take these questions too seriously. They are meant to be fun.