I have worked as a supervisor for 30 years, in Relate, in private practice, and within IAPT Counselling for Depression. My supervisees work in a wide range of therapy settings. I have little time for labels and jargon, my theoretical approach and principles always being wedded to pragmatics. What follows will hopefully give you a sense of my approach to the process of supervision, as will an article of mine in BACP's journal 'Therapy Today' (Issue June 2010)
FOCUS ~ I regard the three main threads of supervision as Support, Learning, and Evaluation. The balance between these strands will vary according to the needs, training and experience of the supervisee. I supervise counsellors rather than just cases, and therefore, professional themes and issues, as well as personal feelings triggered by your work, are just as appropriate to bring to supervision as are cases. I also believe the personal and the professional are inextricably linked, each influencing and informing the other; therefore, the interface between the personal and profession self is an entirely appropriate focus in supervision.
RESPONSIBILITY ~ Each supervisee remains responsible for their work, whereas the supervisor bears a responsibility to that work. My responsibility as a supervisor involves me paying my supervisees' work the attention it deserves; supporting and encouraging their endeavours; and questioning and challenging when appropriate in order to facilitate good practice and further their professional development.
RELATIONSHIP ~ The key to effective supervision, as with effective counselling & therapy, is the relationship between the two parties. Effective supervision requires trust, confidence and mutual regard. Although we might wish to feel these qualities they have to be tested over time for them to really grow and take root. Any doubts that may arise on either side need to be talked about and each party to supervision bears a responsibility to bring these to the fore.
BOUNDARIES ~ My own supervisor is a trusted and highly experienced colleague, Janet Greenwood, who lives in Hadfield, near Glossop. I am also a member of a three-person supervision group of experienced practitioners which meets once a month for two hours. Those are the contexts in which I discuss and monitor my work.
FEES ~ Currently £68 per 1.5 hours of 1-to-1 supervision in Holmfirth. During the on-going Covid 19 pandemic I am happy and able to provide supervision via ZOOM, and when geographical distance makes face-to-face supervision unrealistic.