An Overview of Systemic-Organizational Consultation for Professional Counselors

By Moe, Jeffry L.; Perera-Diltz, Dilani M. | Journal of Professional Counseling, Practice, Theory, & Research, Spring 2009 | Go to article overview

An Overview of Systemic-Organizational Consultation for Professional Counselors


Moe, Jeffry L., Perera-Diltz, Dilani M., Journal of Professional Counseling, Practice, Theory, & Research


This literature review integrates classic and recent scholarship on the framework of systemic-organizational consultation. The authors identify and describe the principles of systemic-organizational consultation, and assert that adoption of this model can help promote counseling as a profession. Basic professional counseling skills are necessary characteristics for consultants who seek to facilitate systemic-organizational change. Strategies for preparing human social systems for change are described. Counselors that integrate this model into their daily practice can realize greater awareness of organizational functioning. These and other implications of adopting systemic-organizational consultation are presented and discussed along with recommendations for future research.

Professional counselors are often solicited to act as consultants in order to help fellow practitioners' improve case-conceptualization skills (Brack & Brack, 1996) and to help human intra-group dynamics (Kuh, 1993; Lippitt & Lippitt, 1986). Counselorfocused publications address the consultant's various roles (Kurpius & Fuqua, 1993), counseling-specific models of consultation (Brack & Brack, 1996; Kurpius, Fuqua, & Rozecki, 1993), and ethics related to acting as consultants (ACA, 2005; Newman, 1993). Two general models, mental health consultation (Meyers, 1995) and systemic-organizational consultation (Lusky & Hayes, 2001), are widely accepted as essential frameworks for counselors acting in the role of consultant (Kurpius & Fuqua, 1993). Professional counselors seek mental health consultation as individuals in order to deepen the knowledge and skills necessary to better serve a specific client or student, a type of clientele (such as individuals suffering from co-occurring disorders), or both (Brack & Brack, 1996; Kampwirth, 2006).

Mental health consultation with individual counselors may be unwarranted if the policies or interpersonal dynamics of an organization appear to impede the functioning of system members (Bloor & Pearson, 2004; Knoff, 2002). Systemicorganizational consultation is an alternative model for such instances, and can be of benefit for consultants who interact with schools, community agencies, businesses, and other organizational contexts (Adelman & Taylor, 2003; Curtis & Stollar, 2002). The systemic-organizational consultation framework, instead of focusing on individual training and remediation, is used to identify aspects of systemic or organizational functioning that may frustrate attainment of an organization's stated goal (Bloor &c Pearson, 2004; Dinkmeyer & Carlson, 2001; Kuh, 1993).

In this vein, we seek to provide a brief overview of the systemic-organizational consultation framework and assert that interventions at the systemic-organizational level help to expand the services that could be provided by professional counselors in a variety of settings (Davis, 2003). Though counselors may receive training in consultation at some point in their education or career, this review serves to act as both a refresher to the experienced counselor and as an introduction to counselors who may want to learn more about how to utilize their counseling skills in an organizational or systemic context. It is important to begin with a review of the assumptions of systemic-organizational consultation and to illumine how these concepts can inform the practice of professional counseling.

Assumptions of SystemicOrganizational Consultation

System Defined

The following definition of the term system and the related assumptions of systemic-organizational consultation are adapted from General Systems Theory as originally developed by Ludwig von Bertalanffy (Brown, Pryzwansky, & Schulte, 2006). A system is defined as two or more individuals who interact in order to achieve a mutually shared goal (Curtis & Stollar, 2002). This definition implies both dynamic interaction between the members of a human social system (i.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

An Overview of Systemic-Organizational Consultation for Professional Counselors
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.