Aims: To explore and understand the relationship between counselling self-efficacy,
burnout, team climate, and the potential moderating effects of reflecting team working.
The rise of lone working in the counselling profession has led to fewer opportunities for
contacts with colleagues. Team working although widely researched in organisational
psychology has not been extensively researched in the counselling workforce (Allen &
Hecht 2004, Cordery 2003, Hackman 1987).
Recent research has challenged the view that burnout can be classified as a single
phenomenon (Ferber1990). Ferber using Banduras self efficacy theory as its basis
(Bandura 1997, 2001), proposes three clinical presentations of burnout: Frenetic, Under
Challenged and Worn-Out that lead to an increasing disengagement from work. This
research points to new directions in studying burnout by assessing absorption,
engagement and participation in work, and in studying workplace environments that
promote this. This study investigates the experience of counsellors, psychotherapists and
counselling psychologists differentiated by their working environment in a qualitative
and quantitative study.
Method: participants (N= 74) completed a survey package with three questionnaires
(BCS36, CASES and TCI) and a demographic form. From the pool of the sample 15 semi
structured interviews were conducted with 5 participants drawn from each working
context. Data was analyzed using a mixed methods qualitative and quantitative design
with converging data streams.
Results: Team participation, acknowledgment and climate for innovation are predictors of burnout in the counselling population. The moderating role of working context is shown to have a significant effect on self efficacy. The analysis suggests that working alone leads to a significant relationship between team climate and self-efficacy. Author keywords: Team working, lone working, counselling settings, burnout, self efficacy, engagement, absorption participation, workplace, reflecting team, team climate