VISTAS Counselor Professional and Career Development

VISTAS Online is an innovative publication produced for ACA by Dr. Garry R. Walz and Dr. Jeanne C. Bleuer of Counseling Outfitters, LLC. Its purpose is to provide a means of capturing the ideas, information and experiences generated by the annual ACA Conference and selected ACA Division Conferences. Papers on a program or practice that has been validated through research or experience may also be submitted. This digital collection of peer-reviewed articles is authored by counselors, for counselors. VISTAS Online contains the full text of over 900 proprietary counseling articles published from 2004 to 2017.

From Counselor to CEO: Opportunities, Challenges, and Rewards.

Frank Browning


Counselors enter the profession of counseling for many different reasons. Altruism, empathy, and the desire to make a difference in life are just a few of the motivating factors that lead individuals to pursue a graduate degree and the path to professional licensure. The desire to make a qualitative difference in life, however, may soon encounter the reality that one’s sphere of influence may be limited by one’s position in life. To increase one’s sphere of personal and professional influence, some counselors realize that a change in professional standing is required. The noble desire of choosing to be a Servant Leader as a counselor (Kahl, 2004) may become a personal and professional issue when the financial and welfare needs of one’s family are factored into the counselor’s quality of life. At this point, some counselors may start to contemplate entry into the administrative hierarchy of a Helping Organization as a means to expand their societal sphere of influence, establish a path to an acceptable and increased livelihood, and enhance their professional status. At other times, successful and well-respected counselors are sought out to lead Helping Organizations based upon their success as a counselor. The result may be the Peter Principle (Peter, 1979) played out in reality dependent upon the ability of the counselor turned CEO to make the transition to a new set of skills and performance expectations.

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