Supervision is seen by many people as an important option for continuing development and training, with a particular use in converting insights and experience that have already been acquired into (more) professional competence.
Supervision is especially important for jobs and professions that are client- (patient-, student-) oriented, where communication between the practitioner and one or more others plays an important role.
Supervision is a distinct professional activity, an essential professional intervention, a practical and efficient way of ensuring high-quality services.
Supervision is an ongoing practice, it is a systemic process, and it is a unique contractual relationship between the supervisor and the supervisee.
Professional Supervisor assesses your competence and supports your professional development.
The nature of supervision
The nature of supervision can be based on an idea by Proctor (1986):
normative – the supervisor accepts (or more accurately shares with the supervisee) responsibility for ensuring that the supervisee’s work is professional and ethical, operating within whatever codes, laws and organizational norms apply;
formative – the supervisor acts to provide feedback or direction that will enable the supervisee to develop the skills, theoretical knowledge, personal attributes and so on that will mean the supervisee becomes an increasingly competent practitioner;
supportive or restorative – the supervisor is there to listen, support, confront the supervisee when the inevitable personal issues, doubts, and insecurities arise – and when client issues are ‘picked up’ by the supervisee.
Our work and interaction
In our regular meetings, You (The Supervisee), bring your work experiences and I (The Supervisor) offer a space for reflective dialogue and collaborative learning.
The process of reflecting in supervision enables You (The Supervisee) to:
review and develop your practice and re-energize yourself;
find a forum to attend to your emotional and professional wellbeing and growth;
receive feedback, broaden your perspectives, generate new ideas and maintain standards of effective practice;
be part of the supportive, generative, stretching and energizing process of professional growth;
enlarge the ability to reflect carefully on your work with an expert third party in order to maintain high professional standards;
be in touch with your developmental goals and achieve them; maintain an ethical practice and to function from a position of dignity, autonomy, and personal responsibility
become more effective in taking care of your organization, your team, your clients and yourself.
Supervision will help you to return to work resourced, empowered and fully engaged
in self-observation and your own learning.
My approach to Professional Supervision
Multi-professional perspective. I offer interdisciplinary supervision for a wide range of practitioners, including social services, health, pastoral ministry, mental health, administration, law, and the voluntary sector.
Contract. Supervision is a negotiated professional relationship based on a contractual agreement. The contract outlines reciprocal roles, accountability, commitments, and expectations. Our contract will be made by mutual input and integrate the procedural, professional and psychological dimensions.
Cultural competence. We live in dynamic, fast changing world were diversity and inclusiveness are extremely important. Cultural competence is about our will and actions to build understanding between people, to be respectful and open to different cultural perspectives, strengthen cultural security and work towards equality in opportunity. Multicultural supervision is defined as a supervisory relationship in which the supervisor and the supervisee are of different cultural backgrounds and/or the discussion of multicultural issues in supervision. Issues like developing an awareness of one’s own cultural values and biases, learning to value others’ worldviews, and developing a set of culturally appropriate interpersonal skills, definitely will be part of supervision work with me.
Framework. The models I use in my supervision practice: the supervisory alliance model, the seven tasks model; the seven-eyed model, etc. Models help us clarify what is done in supervision, how it is done and why it is done.
Relationally oriented. Relationally oriented professional supervision means that the work we do will occur in the context of the relationship we build in our time together. One of the foundations of being a good supervisor is cultivating strong, healthy, and appropriate relationships with the people I supervise. This does not mean being friends with people. Being friends can get in the way of good supervision. “Healthy” means respecting the boundaries of the relationship.
Intentional conversation. I have an interactive and intentional style in my supervision work, which means deliberate, purposeful, planned, intended, premeditated.
Creative reflection. "Supervision is like a play space where we can suspend the desire to know and allow ourselves to have experience" (Schuk & Wood, 2011). I use a variety of creative methods like questioning, art and writing activities. Creative methods help to access what we know tacitly but have not consciously realized, and enable us to become sensitive to ‘different layers of meaning’ in other people’s communication.
What supervision is NOT...
Supervision is NOT counselling, psychotherapy or coaching
Supervision is NOT always easy and comfortable
Supervision is NOT about judgement
Fundamentals of clinical supervision, by Bernard, J., & Goodyear, R. (2014).
Best practice in professional supervision, by Bond, M., & Holland, S. (2012).
Supervision in the helping professions, by Hawkins, P. & Shohet, R. (2012).
Reflective practice in supervision, by Hewson, D. & Carroll, M. (2016).
The Heart of Coaching Supervision: Working with Reflection and Self-Care, by Palmer, S., Turner, E. (2019).
Supervision in clinical practice: A practitioner’s guide, by Scaife, J. (2009).
Supervising the Reflective Practitioner; An Essential Guide to Theory and Practice, by Scaife, J. (2010).
Creative Supervision: The use of expressive arts methods in supervision and self-supervision, by Lahad, M. (2000)
Self-Supervision, by Morrisette, P. (2002)
Inspiring Creative Supervision, by Schuk, C. & Wood, J. (2011)
Being Supervised: A Guide for Supervisees, by De Haan, E., & Willemine R. (2018)