General counselling needs among the employees in the industrial sector in Kenya: with implication to professional counselling
Sifuma, Leah Ndungu
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A major problem in the Kenyan industry sector is how to resolve the industrial disputes and improve performance (production). The purpose of this study was to establish whether there were general counselling needs and hence integrate professional counselling services among the employees in the industrial sector. Therefore, help to prevent or resolve industrial disputes and improve performance. A sample size of 76 employees was drawn from two industries within Nairobi Province. They included New Kenya Creameries Co-operative and Baummann Engineering Limited. A self-developed 44 item inventory of industrial employees counselling needs was designated and used to gather data. The study used both quantitative and qualitative data collection techniques. The data collected was analysed using descriptive statistics and ONE-WAY ANOVA. The data collected was therefore coded and entered into computer for analysis through statistical packages for social sciences (SPSS 11). The results of the study showed that there were different types of counselling needs among the industrial employees. These were categorised into four main types as follows: work-related, social and psychological and personal. Each type of the counselling needs was defined by the industrial employees' level of education, job experience, marital status, age and job rank. However, there was significant difference in the counselling needs among the industrial employees on the basis of their job ranks. Specifically the employees at the management level had more counselling needs than the employees at the junior staff level. Further, the results showed that work-related types of counselling needs ranked highest among psychological/personal and social. In the work related type of counseling needs, low wages/salaries, job security, lack of advice, working conditions and work burn out were the counseling needs that rated highly. Generally all types of counselling needs (work related, social and psychological/personal) were found to be among the industrial workers. The researcher concludes that integration of professional counselling in the industrial sector is an effective motivational method that industrial managers should be encouraged to use. It is particularly beneficial to all the employees in the industrial sector in resolving industrial disputes and to improve performance and production. Therefore, industrial policy makers should encourage integration of professional counselling services and the industrial managers to make it part of the human resource department. Further research should aim at determining how to establish counselling programs in the industrial sector and the perception and attitude of industrial employees towards professional counselling.