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What would a career counselor help with?

Career counsellors work with clients on a multitude of topics related to their career. They can help clients early in their career assess what job pathways may be a good fit for them and may even help clients find a job, improve their resume, develop required job-related skills, and prepare for interviews. For individuals later in their career, career counsellors can offer support surrounding major career transitions, including job changes or return to the workforce after a period of time off. Career counsellors may also help individuals navigate various workplace-related challenges, such as handling coworker conflict, managing high levels of career-related stress, or difficulties in meeting performance goals.

What is the difference between a career counsellor, a career coach and a career advisor?

In general, career counselors have a degree—such as a mental health counselling or social work degree—that provides them with specific training in counselling. This means that career counsellors may be better equipped to deal with the psychological components of career navigation. Alternatively, career coaches and advisors may not have such specific training in counselling and may be more prepared to help clients navigate their job search, develop specific job-related skills, or set career-related goals. In many instances, however, the terms career counsellor, career coach, and career advisor are used interchangeably, so clients should always confirm the qualifications of any career professional they work with to ensure that they are aware of the limitations and benefits of that professional's approach.

What qualifications should I look for in a career counsellor?

The term "career counsellor" can be used by professionals with various levels of training, so clients should be aware of the specific credentials of the person they are working with. The qualifications that a client should look for depend on their specific goals. Those seeking therapy should find a therapist who specialises in career counselling and holds a degree and license in mental health counselling or psychology. Individuals more interested in skill development or career coaching may prefer a professional with job-specific qualifications, such as extensive experience in a particular field or membership in a career-related professional group. In general, therapists often approach career counselling in a more "holistic sense" than individuals without a therapy degree, as they are specifically trained to view individuals in the broader context of their overall wellbeing.

Does a career counsellor help to find employment?

Career counsellors often help clients find employment, and they frequently engage directly with the client's job search process—such as researching potential jobs that could be a good fit for the client. In other cases, career counsellors can aid in the employment process less directly, such as by helping clients develop specific skills they will need to be successful in their job search or helping them prepare for interviews. If available, some clients may want to work with a career counsellor who specialises in a certain career area, such as careers in the medical or business industries. Career counsellors with particular expertise in a job sector may be especially helpful in facilitating client employment through networking or knowledge of available job opportunities.