Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) are often sought after by clinical counsellors wanting employment or wanting EAP referrals to fill their private practice. It appears that many counsellors wanting to break into the field of EAP do not fully understand what this specialized benefit is all about. The field of EAP is exciting, challenging, competitive and ever-evolving in this 21st Century.
A well-run EAP is an extremely good investment for both the employer and the employees of an organization in that it contributes to a healthy, productive and profitable organization. A full service EAP deals with any behavioural or risk management issue that can affect an employee or an organization as a whole. Clinical counsellors who continue to derive a significant portion of their income from EAPs keep abreast of the on-going evolution of the EAP field, which includes an overall understanding and appreciation of the business world.
Clients usually access their EAP when their coping mechanisms have broken down i.e. when they feel overwhelmed or when a crisis or traumatic event has occurred.
In EAP counselling the ‘whole life of the client’ is understood when addressing the troubling issue. A skilled EAP counsellor is a ‘specialist generalist’ ready to address any client.
EAP counselling is a specialized skill. Grounded in a client-centered and solution-focused approach, skilled EAP counsellors understand the parameters of EAP and are somewhat versed in the world of business. They are all skilled in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and are considered eclectic counsellors who can draw on a number of different interventions to move the client forward.
Could the EAP field be for you?