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  • Writer's pictureKarine Guibert

What is the value of supervision?

Updated: Sep 14, 2023

- Photo Daniel Seßler -

To properly choose a professional who support people and teams (coach, psychologist, etc.), it is recommended to look at their training and experience, the adequacy between their specialty or approach and your need, their professionalism through their affiliation with a professional network, and rely on your intuition to assess their human qualities and the contact between both of you. In the meantime, a good leader (executive, manager, etc.) is often defined by their charisma and ability to define an inspiring vision, their communication skills and emotional intelligence, their ability to make decisions and their reliability, or their adaptability.

Rarely do we talk about the importance of working on ourselves, yet… Would you be willing to follow a guide whose compass is attached to a magnet? Would you agree to board a plane whose pilot does not know he is colorblind? Our behaviors stem from a reference model that is unique to us and our worldview, our way of thinking, acting and interacting with others are inevitably biased by our history and experience. Knowing this, trusting someone who is not conscious and engaged in a continuous process of exploring their blind spots can become a real poker game!

Supervision, above all, is at the service of clients and stakeholders of the professionals who support people and teams. In turn, it acts as a mirror, a navigation beacon, a brush cutter or a chocolate square, to allow the supervisee to take a step back and continue to support with efficiency and professionalism. “I believe that supervision is mandatory, among other things for ethical reasons: we need the experience of a supervisor to unblock difficult situations, to vent, and to help us take a step back” says Severine, supervisee.

As a coach, I have always been supervised and I realize how useful it would have been to be supervised when I held leadership positions in large international organizations. Whether individually or collectively, it is for me an essential learning space for my work where I can:

  • Be challenged, renew, create

  • Recharge, restore, rest

  • As a group, share with peers, demanding and caring practitioners

As Erin, supervisee, says, “I leave a better coach and a better, more balanced practitioner”.

Others supervised testify to the impact of supervision on their professional practice. “It reminded me of my full range of […] skills and I valued the support and space to be intentional about reflecting and growing”, says Genna. “We realized that we were very much in action and that we lacked moments of hindsight. This meta position, to get out of doing and reflect on being, with a third pair of eyes to bring another perspective, was a rich experience”, add Manuela and Veronica.

Collectively, the experience also allows you to benefit from the contribution of our peers, as mentioned by Chantal: “I liked the cooperative approach, where we contribute to each other, in a horizontal, peer-to-peer relationship. […] These supervision groups are a place of discovery and development, with great freedom and kindness.”

If after this reading you still have doubts, I can only invite you to experience supervision, with a supervisor engaged in working on themselves of course!

What is your experience of supervision?


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