Dealing with Difficult Clients


.1 CEU

Presenter: Jill Sparacio, OTR/L, ATP/SMS




In our industry, professionals are expected to interact with a variety of personalities with consumers, caregivers and coworkers.  Difficulty and frustration in dealing with others can occur. Success can be achieved by understanding and addressing numerous factors including understanding the different generational learning styles and identifying possible points of conflict to either avoid or defuse it.  The presentation of a unified team focusing on the supplier and therapist relationship sets the tone for a positive interaction. The provision of education to all involved in the process can assist to avoid potential difficulty.  This session will focus on identifying issues that can cause some consumers to be “difficult” to deal with as well as providing the tools necessary for successful resolution.  Anecdotal case examples will be highlighted to demonstrate how conflict and potentially difficult situations can be defused.

Learning Outcomes:

  • The participant will be able to list 3 reasons why a client might be difficult to deal with.
  • The participant will be able to list 4 generational learning styles.
  • The participant will be able to identify key words in phrases that can trigger “difficult” responses from others.

Jill is an OT in private practice with over 35 years’ experience.  She provides OT services to children and adults with intellectual disabilities and medical fragility specializing in seating and wheeled mobility.  Jill presents the clinical application of seating and wheeled mobility throughout North America and internationally.  She is a member of the Clinician Task Force and has been actively involved in funding and delivery issues on the state and national levels.