Skills Needed For Becoming a School Counselor

School counselors have the responsibility of helping students in making good choices, finding their path and learning about themselves. They will be able to do their job in a better way if they listen and also communicate effectively. In order to accomplish this, a school counselor needs to have a unique combination of compassion and coaching skills. These individuals need to be prepared for anything and have to be flexible because every day is different. Even though this job may seem demanding, but it is one of the most rewarding ones because it aids young people in enhancing and improving their lives. 

Here are some skills that every school counselor needs to have in order to be successful:

People Skills 

School counselors have to be able to different types of people in different types of settings. It is essential for them to feel comfortable in all kinds of situations because they never know what they will face every day. There are different reasons why children are sent to the school counselor from being bullied by their peers to feeling confused about subject selection and their future. Students are also sent to counselors when they argue with a teacher or are feeling stressed and down. Successful school counseling becomes possible with an understanding of the various counseling methods, some training in psychology and possession of strong communication and interpersonal skills.


School counselors need to communicate effectively and properly. As they spend their time in writing emails, reports and letters and also talk to students, staff and parents, the counselors have to have strong written and verbal communication skills. They need to avoid miscommunication and misunderstanding if they communicate their thoughts succinctly and clearly. 


An effective school counselor is one who can listen to others patiently. This doesn’t mean just listening, but active listening, which means understanding what an individual is saying and trying to say. There are different forms of active listening including asking questions, repeating what others are saying or even just nodding while listening quietly. It is the job of an experienced and skilled school counselor to decide the type of active listening that’s required in every situation and with different individuals. 


A successful school counselor is one who has a deep sense of empathy, understanding and compassion. This is due to the fact that students can come with varied and unique problems and hardships. These problems may not be relevant to just school; problems at home can also be involved. They may be victims of abuse or failing a test; school counselors have to deal with these issues. Therefore, they need to be compassionate and understanding in all trying situations in order to help the students. There are times when parents and students will express frustration, anger and even despair. It is the job of counselors to understand why these emotions originate and how they can be productively channeled. 

As long as an individual has these skills, they can become successful and effective school counselors. 

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