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One of the more sophisticated communication forms used in attempting to maintain constructive employee attitudes is counselling. The effectiveness of counselling depends not only on the method utilized, but also on the skills and position of the counsellor. The two major methods in counselling are:

  • Directive counselling

When the counsellor assumes the role that, s/he understands what the problem is, can find the correct solution(s) to the problem, convince the employee that the solution is the correct one, and then proceed to implement the solution the counselling can be said to be “directive”.

  • Non-directive counselling

The role of the counsellor is assumed as a sympathetic and active listener and the aim of counselling being that the employee can and should solve his or her own problems.

A purely directive counselling seldom creates a free and permissive atmosphere. Hence, a mix of the above two types of counselling termed “cooperative counselling” can be adopted.

As far as possible, counselling should focus only on work-related goals or behaviour.


Designing Human Resource Management Systems: A Leader’s Guide by Jayant Mukherjee

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