Counselling in the workplace: How time-limited counselling can effect change in well-being

Jill Collins, Alison Gibson, Sarah Parkin, Rosemary Parkinson, Diana Shave, Colin Dyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Many employers provide counselling support on work and personal issues for their employees, but in times of economic pressure such services can be at risk if their effectiveness is not demonstrated. Aim: To evaluate whether time-limited counselling in a workplace can effect sustained change in well-being. Method: The study was carried out by a staff counselling team in a university setting. The Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Well-being Scale (WEMWBS) was completed by clients at the beginning and end of counselling, and at three and six months following. A non-treatment comparison group completed the survey at the same intervals. Results: The results of our investigation show clearly that the effect of time-limited counselling (average seven sessions) on distressed clients is positive. The evidence of our treatment group suggests that they acquire an increased sense of well-being as a result of the experience of counselling with a significant statistical difference between pre-and post-counselling treatment group scores on the WEMWBS and consistently higher scores found post counselling. The improvement was maintained at the same level for at least six months following the end of counselling. Conclusions: The provision of time-limited counselling by employers is an effective support for personal difficulties affecting work.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)84-92
Number of pages9
JournalCounselling and Psychotherapy Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 28 May 2012

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