BLOWIN’ IN THE WIND: SUPERVISION SPECIAL REPORT

How do coach supervisors respond to ethical dilemmas and tricky issues? In this two-part series, Jonathan Passmore, Eve Turner and Marta Filipiak report on their research The answer my friend is blowin’ in the wind”: songwriter Bob Dylan’s famous lines suggested it’s not hard to do the right thing. Too often people ignore the obvious, because it’s tricky or because making an ethical decision creates unpleasant consequences for them. In this article we explore coach supervisors’ responses to such dilemmas and issues. The article picks up on themes from our previous articles (Turner & Passmore, 2017; Passmore & Turner, 2018) and […]

TROUBLESHOOTER: WHERE ARE MY LOYALTIES?

An internal coach discloses in supervision, client reports of bullying. She must take a stand but also she wants to leave. How can supervision help? The issue Beth is a highly qualified, experienced internal coach in a global organisation. She has been working with you, her supervisor, for six months, and is normally very upbeat when she comes to sessions. Today she’s come to her supervision with a frown on her face and her energy feels very different. She tells you that she’s been hearing in her coaching, and through her employee engagement role, stories about some disturbing behaviours. She’s […]

FEAR, POWER AND LEARNING

In this three-part series, Louise Sheppard shares her research on the supervisee perspective in coaching supervision, which has implications for all involved. Part 2: providing supervisee-led supervision   Following on from the first in our series last issue on how supervisees can get the most from coaching supervision, here we argue that supervisors need to provide supervisee-led supervision.   Causal mechanisms In my doctoral research, I identified three causal mechanisms that affect human nature and might explain supervisees’ experiences: fear, power relations and our natural tendency to learn. It is important that supervisors and supervisees are aware of these significant […]

HELP OR HINDRANCE?

In this three-part series, Louise Sheppard shares her research on the supervisee perspective in coaching supervision, which has implications for all involved. Part 1: how supervisees inhibit and enable their supervision   There has been little research into the supervisee perspective in coaching supervision even though it is more challenging and exposing to be a supervisee than a supervisor and the supervisee is at least as important for the success of supervision (de Haan, 2012). Supervisor training courses focus on the role of the supervisor and most of the professional bodies representing coaches in the UK do not provide clear […]

PEER AND TRADITIONAL SUPERVISION: THE BALANCE OF POWER

How is power experienced in traditional and peer supervision, and how can we best work with power dynamics? Carola Hieker reports By Carola Hieker While the large number of publications about supervision over the past three to five years confirms a growing interest in supervision, most focus on what we call ‘traditional supervision’ within a setting where the certified supervisor gets paid by the coach to supervise his/her practice. Little is written around peer supervision, and little is written about the presence of power in both peer and traditional supervision. Kassan (2010), who defines peer supervision as two or more […]

SUPERVISION: STAY SHARP, STAY SAFE

What motivates coaches to access supervision? Clare Norman interviewed internal and external coaches on why they devote time and money to coach supervision How dare we [coaches] believe that our clients need a safe thinking space and that we don’t need that for ourselves?” So said one of the coaches I interviewed for this article about why coaches invest in supervision, echoing similar comments from others. Another coach said, “Given that I am the main tool in coaching, shouldn’t I be servicing that tool, to continually get the best performance out of it?” I am an avid believer in accessing […]

SOME 15 PER CENT OF COACHES WITHHOLD DEEPEST CONCERNS FROM THEIR SUPERVISORS

Most coaches view supervision as a place of safety. However, a global investigation by Erik de Haan, of Ashridge Centre for Coaching, reveals ongoing issues around shame and trust Have you taken the most concerning, worrying and/or shameful episode that occurred in your practice over the last few years to supervision? If not, it seems you’re in the minority. Some 85 per cent of 518 professional coaches from 32 countries surveyed by Ashridge Centre for Coaching’s Professor Erik de Haan, reported they had done so, and that this was helpful. As de Haan points out, this still leaves 5 per […]

COMING OF AGE: THE DEVELOPMENT OF COACHING SUPERVISION 2006-2014

By Eve Turner and Peter Hawkins Coaching supervision is a relatively new phenomenon, arriving later than supervision in many of the other people professions and even new in relation to the short history of coaching itself. However, the past nine years have seen an exponential growth in the field. This growth includes: the number and percentage of coaches regularly having supervision; the development of supervision training in many parts of the world, most prominently in the UK, but also in Sweden, France, Singapore, Australia and North America; and numerous books and articles (eg, Hawkins and Smith, 2006, 2013; Hawkins, 2006; […]

MENTORING IS ‘SMALL TALK’ WITHOUT SUPERVISION

Many mentoring initiatives fail, many mentors don’t know what they are meant to be doing and meetings between mentor and mentee are often reduced to “having lunch”, suggests research. Senior leaders working as mentors, and their mentees, reported that most initiatives were not very successful and the results disproportionate to the time invested, according to research by Diversity-in-Leadership among around 50 mentors, mentees and leadership development professionals. Mentors reported that they often didn’t really know what to do in their role and were unsure how much they were supposed to challenge and develop their mentee. They also expressed the wish […]

CHAIN REACTION

Sarah Gilbert, Michelle Lucas and Eve Turner share their peer supervision research, reflect on their experiences, and raise questions for future debate Imagine our confusion when three qualified supervisors in a peer supervision chain received conflicting views about the appropriateness of this form of reflective practice for coach and supervisor accreditation purposes from three different coaching professional bodies. In the current market, with many more coaches than supervisors and few supervisors who have experience of supervising supervisors, what ‘should’ best practice look like? In writing this article we wanted to share our own experiences and learning from being part of […]