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06 |  Mentor Coaching and Coaching Supervision

What supervision is

Supervision is a systematic process for the ongoing professional development of an organisational coach. In it, issues arising from coaching practice are explored. Supervision builds on the metaskills of reflective practice, collaborative inquiry, questioning and developing self-awareness. It provides a confidential reflective space where a coach can bring personal and practice issues that are interfering with their effectiveness.

Kinds of supervision

Supervision can occur in a one-to-one relationship between the coach and supervisor or in a group setting with a supervisor and up to six coaches. Group supervision adds in the perspectives of coaching peers and group dynamics that the supervisor facilitates.


Group supervision supports ongoing professional development in a number of ways:

  • Coaches are validated as well as challenged in a community of practice setting that generates collective knowledge,
  • Generative learning is shared through expertise and experience.
  • Supervision ensures accountability and an ethical engagement.

How supervision works

The purpose and mindset of the supervision session is addressed first. Questions such as: What’s been going well since we last met? What are your hopes for our session today? What issues are you coming with today?”

This provides a check-in for everyone and identifies the range of issues to be discussed. Usually there is quick consensus about where to start, and a deeper statement of the issue by the person who introduced it. This might be followed by one of a number of ways of exploring the issue and can include others’ experience of it. The supervisor will guide the conversation, most often with questions which raise or lead to different ways of seeing and/or understanding the issue.