What Is Coaching Supervision?

/What Is Coaching Supervision?
What Is Coaching Supervision?2019-02-03T03:42:53+00:00

Simply put – it makes you a better coach – in fact the best you can be.

And of course, your clients are central to the process and the primary reason, along with your wellbeing, for your ongoing professional development

What the Professionals say about Supervision

Benefits of coaching Supervision

Whether you prefer 1:1 or group supervision, here is some of what supervision can offer:

  • Space for reflective practice. The opportunity, space and time to think, reflect, explore and inquire into successes, listen to your inner voice and name the ‘unthought known’ (to borrow a phrase from Christopher Bollas).
  • A place to develop knowledge. Supervision can act as a support for your ongoing inquiry into how you practice and how you can get even better at what you do.
  • The opportunity to identify blind spots: A space that is safe and supportive enough for you to risk revealing – to yourself and to others – your conscious or unconscious feelings, thoughts and triggers.
  • Recognition and discussion about ‘stuck’ patterns – a place for you to explore how you are relating to others and handling events.
  • Space to think through ethical issues
  • Support for brave ideas – where you can be encouraged to take good risks
  • A space to develop skills – where you can learn about and ideally practise new skills and creative/innovative ways of exploring and working.

(Adapted from Charlotte Sills)

The Association for Coaching says this about supervision…

“Regular reflection on and reviewing of one’s work is essential to maintain and sustain good practice. Supervision recognises the ‘human element’ and subsequent demands of the coaching work on the coach. It ensures that relationships with clients are non- exploitative, a coach’s limitations are understood and worked within, and further development needs can be surfaced. It provides a space to expand emotional intelligence, gain support, relate practice to theory, develop new learning, and evolve coaching practice. Overall, coaching supervision is essential both to develop the coach’s professional skills and to maintain excellent standards of coaching.”


The Association of Coaching Supervisors offers some familiar examples of common reasons for coming to coaching supervision….

  • Not feeling “good enough” to effectively coach a successful or domineering client.
  • Thinking you know the answer to client’s problem and then being disappointed when they don’t follow your advice.
  • Dealing with erratic client emotions and being unsure about whether to refer or continue to coach.
  • Feeling unsure about the impact of the interventions used in individual or team coaching assignments.
  • Using the same techniques, models and/or approaches to all coaching assignments, regardless of the client need due to lack of confidence.
  • Having the feeling that what’s happening to your client is also happening to you and/or other clients in your portfolio

Many coaches find both individual and group peer supervision useful.

Adding professional supervision to your on-going development can add an additional level of quality you bring to your clients.

More experienced coaches find identifying and shifting parallel process, blind spots and/or transference in the coach/client context invaluable.

Furthermore, if you are coaching within an organisation, the ‘Standards Australia Guidelines for Coaching in Organizations’ states categorically: “All coaches should be engaged in professional supervision.” (Standards Australia Guidelines, p. 61)”