Many people will, at some point in their lives, find themselves in the role of a counsellor without having a true understanding of the concept of counselling or what the role of the professional counsellor entails. There is a big difference between a professional counsellor and a person who uses some counselling skills as part of their role, for example their role as a friend or colleague. A professional counsellor is a highly trained individual who is able to use a different range of counselling approaches with their clients (Anon, 2001).
This is a 3-stage model or framework offered by Egan as useful in helping people solve problems and develop opportunities. The goals of using the model are to help people 'to manage their problems in living more effectively and develop unused opportunities more fully', and to 'help people become better at helping themselves in their everyday lives.' (Egan G, 1998).
Therefore there is an emphasis on empowerment. Also the person s own agenda is central, and the model seeks to move the person towards action leading to outcomes which they choose and value.
This model is not based on a particular theory of personality development, or on a theory of the ways difficulties develop. It is a framework for conceptualising the helping process, and is best used in working on issues in the recent past and the present.
As with any model, it provides a map, which can be used in exploring, but which is not the territory itself. The Egan model and mentoring are not synonymous; the model can be used in many kinds of helping relationships, and mentoring/co-mentoring can be done using other models. The model can and should be used flexibly. The model works best if attention is paid to Rogers' 'core conditions', the helpers approach to the speaker being based on