30% of client improvement to relationship factors (Lambert, 1992). Grencavage and
Norcross (1990) researched fifty studies that were published from 1936 through 1989 and
found 89 different commonalities among the proposed therapeutic common factors
shared by diverse psychotherapies. Using five superordinate categories: client
characteristics, therapist qualities, change processes, treatment structure, and relationship
elements, it was discovered that the greatest consensual commonality of the authors (56
%) was the development of the therapeutic alliance. Consensual commonality of the
authors for beneficial therapist qualities was 24%.
The significance of the counselor’s personal variables became more apparent with
the contribution that was made to the counseling profession by Carl Rogers and what is
now known as Client-Centered Therapy. Rogers (1957; 1958) argued that effective
psychotherapeutic work depended upon the attitudes of the therapist and the relationship
of the therapist with the client, and not merely upon techniques. He argued that the
relationship should communicate wholeness and congruence, lending assistance to the
helping event. Conditions required for therapeutic change include an unconditional
positive regard for the client and an empathic understanding of the client’s internal frame
of reference. This empathic understanding must also be communicated to the client.
According to Rogers (1958), the attitudes and feelings of the therapist are more essential
elements in therapy than theoretical orientation.
This bold assertion by Rogers (1957) that the counseling relationship and the
personal qualities of the therapist are essential (both necessary and sufficient conditions
for therapeutic success) has been supported by others also. Truax (1963), for example,