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Career Counseling Theory & Relationship Strategies

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Career Counseling Theory & Relationship Strategies

Felicia Degree

Coun5279 Life Planning & Career Development

July 28, 2016

Dr. Gerald Thauberger


This paper is about Taneka, a 17 year-old African American female. She is a junior in high school. Taneka is the oldest of three siblings living with her single-parent mother. Her mother has worked in manufacturing and her father has not been a part of her life. Since Taneka is the oldest, her responsibilities throughout her life was to care for her younger siblings, Derrick, who is 14, and Kenya, who is 12. As her sibling has grown older, she was able to take on a part time job at her local mall. While working at the mall she realized she had a knack for dealing with people. Her supervisor also seen that Taneka like working with people, they asked her if she would like to participate in the company’s employee leadership training program. This got Taneka thinking about post-secondary education possibilities. Taneka put much emphasis on her grades, but she is on track to graduate with her class. Taneka’s current grade point average is 2.05. Now Taneka is having second thoughts about college or other post-secondary educational possibilities, she also does not have a clear idea of what she would like to pursue as a career. After talking to the school counselor, Taneka starts to open up about this and seeks help to start the process of planning for the rest of her life.  

Person-Environment-Correspondence Counseling (PEC) was developed by Rene Dawis, George England and Lloyd Lofquist from the University of Minnesota in 1964. Zunker (2016) describes person-environment-correspondence counseling as the difference between personality structure and personality style and betereen personality style adjustment style. PEC has become more inclusive, embracing on how individuals interact in their everyday lives as well as how they interact in their work environment. Zunker (2016) describes PEC as work includes human interaction and source of satisfaction, dissatisfaction, rewards, stress, and many other psychological variables. Also, in order for an individual to survive, the individual and the work enviroment must achieve some degree of congruence (correspondence).

Career Counseling Theory & Relationship Strategies

        Career Development is a continuous lifelong process of developmental experiences that focuses on seeking, obtaining and processing information about self, occupational and educational alternatives (Zunker, 2016). The American Counseling Association describes career development as the total constellation of psychological, sociological, educational, physical, economic, and chance factors that combine to influence the nature of work in the total life span of the individual. Career counseling looks at all aspects of an individual needs like family, work, personal concerns, and leisure; all these aspects are recognized as integral parts of the individual’s career decision making and planning (Zunker, 2016)

        Person-Environment Correspondence Theory is a person’s ability (skills, knowledge, experience, attitude, and behaviors) correspond with the requirements of the role or the organization, the more likely it is that they will perform the job well and be perceived as satisfactory by the employer. The more closely an individual’s abilities corresponds with their desires of the role, the more likely it is that they will perform their job well. Some trait-and-factor methods have been brought into person-environment fit: (1) Both cognitive and affective processes are now involved; (2) clinical information and qualitative data are included in the appraisal process; and (3) the counselor’s role has shifted from a directive approach to one that the counselor and client negotiate (Zunker, 2016). Taneka is going to need a career counselor that supportive and gives her positive regards.  

        The basic tenets of PEC involves cooperation between counselor and client. There are some major guidelines that serves as a connection between theory and practice. (1) job satisfaction is a significant variable in determining productivity and career tenure. (2) measured abilities, interests, and values can facilitate the client’s match to a work environment. (3) achievements needs can be satisfied in a person’s work environment. (4)  counselors needs to focus on the individuality of their client’s needs, abilities, values, and interests (Zunkers, 2016). The importance in PEC is self-knowledge. It is important that the client recognize that the client who has developed an adequate self-identity are better equipped.



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