Non-Ethical Practice of MI

Recently a MINT member sent us a job announcement from a company that sells diamonds looking for a motivational interviewer to help them understand how to motivate people to buy their product.  Apparently they are looking for techniques to use on customers in order to increase their sales and profit.  This reflects a fundamental misunderstanding of the nature and purpose of motivational interviewing (MI).  We developed MI for use by people like those in the helping professions whose primary focus is on the wellbeing of the client.  It is never to be used with the intention of selling products or getting people to do something that benefits the provider, which we have explicitly described as unethical practice.  A cornerstone of MI spirit is compassion whereby the patient’s well-being is our prime directive and the reason for our consultations. Dr. William Mayo, one of the founders of the Mayo Clinic, said it well in 1910: “The best interest of the patient is the only interest to be considered.”
                                                                                    William R. Miller, Ph.D.
                                                                                    Stephen Rollnick, Ph.D.
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