Putting Your Best Hand Forward

Suzette Plemel Provides Career Advice for Entry-Level Massage Therapists

For Beginners

Decide what avenue you want to follow. Like medical, working at a spa or developing your own practice. It is always beneficial to work somewhere for a year to get a good feel for what the massage therapy industry is about and this will help you decide what direction to go into. Students will say that they want to do one thing when they start school and when they finish they are in a different direction.

Be prepared for hard work, it’s very physical. A massage therapist should try to be in shape and promote healthy living by being a good example. Be prepared for clients’ likes and dislikes; do not take it personally. Be professional and remember the law of ethics in massage therapy.


Job Searching

To find a job, search out the community spas and clinics and it is best if you go in and ask about openings. Fill out an application and dress professionally, be sure to present yourself well. Know the gifts that you have and be confident in your ability to do the job you are applying for.

Employers are now looking for massage therapists that are critical thinkers and can think outside of the massage therapist box, especially in the medical field. A massage therapist who works with a chiropractor may be asked what should be the next step with the client. The therapist needs to know what muscles are involved and how she or he is going to help them.

Do not be disappointed if you don’t hear back from an employer, but continue pursuing and do not give up.

The best job opportunity for a new massage therapist is working at a spa, as the therapist will be introduced to many different modalities and a good variety of clients. At spas you can use just about everything you have been taught in school


Three Biggest Mistakes a Massage Therapist Can Make in Their Career

The three biggest mistakes one can make in the massage industry is being late, behaving unprofessionally and not being a team player. Suzette has had to let employees go who were using unprofessional language or those who did not work well with others. As a massage therapist one goes above and beyond typical duties; you have to do laundry, clean the clinic, multitask, help other therapists and work with other employees.

The key to being successful as a massage therapist is continual learning as it will benefit you and your clients. Be selective about the continuing education you go to, to make it effective you should use what you learn.


Suzette Plemel, Massage Therapy Program Chair

About Suzette Plemel

Suzette Plemel is the Chair of the massage program at Globe University in Green Bay, Wisconsin. She has extensive experience as a licensed massage therapist specializing in pain management and manages her own business Performance Plus Therapy for the last three years. She earned her associate degree in Massage Therapy from Rasmussen College and is a certified personal trainer. She is nationally certified and state licensed. Suzette has been with Globe University since 2011.