The raison d'etre of the mental health profession is supposed to be con cerned with helping. Our involvement is with people's problems-the psychological problems that incapacitate and prevent otherwise capable individuals from leading fulfilling and "self-actualized" lives. Perhaps more than most of the specialties and subdisciplines within the broad field, mental health consultation is even more concerned with helping people. Because the focus in consultation is on reaching larger numbers of people, the discipline has an even greater dedication to doing something about troubled lives. The emphasis of most consultations is on improving the quality of life for various groups of people, on making impossible living situations more bearable, and "broadly on assisting people to face the daily challenges in their lives. Mental health consultation is an effective tool for achieving these goals (see Chapter 4). And it is an art-a difficult art that requires not only special skills and special training but special kinds of personalities that can relate well to people of different walks of life, different ethnic back grounds, different religious or political beliefs, and different status or economic position. But, unfortunately, far too many individuals who are engaged in consultation have neither the requisite background nor the special skills to become the kind of artist that is required.