Counselling Skills in the Workplace

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The Role of counselling skills in the workplace

This paper seeks to explore the role of counselling skills in the workplace, the benefits and how it can be used to enhance employee performance. In order to exhaustively analyze the role and importance of its use in resolving workplace issues, this paper will go through the following, What counselling is, the difference between counselling skills and counselling, what workplace counselling entails and the skills needed, the advantages and disadvantages of the use of counselling skills by the Manager.

Counselling can be defined as the process of helping an individual manage a problem through talking about it (Eugene Shayo 2011).

Counselling is the direct involvement and relationship between counsellors

and individuals with the purpose of supporting the individual to meet a

satisfactory outcome or one which is accepted by that person as the best

possible outcome for that situation.

It could also be defined as a blend of techniques, skills and attitudes which are used to help individuals manage problems

Counselling skills are primarily communication skills which focus on extracting information and guiding. They involve understanding and the application of a variety of techniques and counselling theories, while counselling is bringing those skills to bear upon a specific problem and helping people work their way through them. Counselling skills usually include acute listening, affirmation of what is being said, and seeking feedback on and throughout a conversation. They also include understanding, tolerance, empathy and genuine concern for a situation or individual. Of course there are many others. These skills are often used in everyday situations without actually being recognised as such. For instance, Parents use these skills in the parenting of children.

It is only when user and recipient enter into a counselling relationship, does it become counselling rather than the use of communication skills (Summerfield and Oudtshoorn).

Counselling allows people use their own resources to manage their problems, as it is hinged on the belief that people sometimes need help in mobilising their own energies, clear their thinking and bring into play their own resources

Counselling provides individuals with supportive, non-judgemental and confidential environment in which to explore any emotional, psychological or job related issues they might have.

According to the Code of ethics and practise for counsellors (1993)

“The overall aim of counselling is to provide an opportunity for the client to work towards living in a more satisfying and resourceful way, the term “counselling” includes work with individual, pairs or groups of people, often, but not always, referred to as “clients”. The objectives of particular counselling relationships will vary according to the clients needs.

Counselling may be concerned with developmental issues, addressing and resolving specific problems, making decisions ,coping with crisis, developmental issues ,addressing and resolving specific problems ,making decisions ,coping with crisis, developing personal insight and knowledge, working through feelings of inner conflict or improving relationship with others”

(Code of ethics and practise for counselling skills (1993))

As a result of the fast paced life of modern organisations, with the inherent struggle to meet deadlines, managing work/life balance and meeting targets, employees are prone to stress, depression and anxiety arising from feelings of inadequacy or work overload. Sometimes, problems from their personal life could influence and affect their work life, and the stress level of the individual.

Workplace counselling therefore, is counselling that is designed to help and support employees going through difficult times in their life.

Work relationships, no matter how crude or rudimentary, requires the person in the role of employer to have some...
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