Small group supervision

Hello, this is Kathryn Downing, of Galileo Coaching. I’m often asked, “So how does a group work in supervision?”

Typically, we come together in small groups, so the supervisor with somewhere between four and six coaches, typically, maybe one or two more. But four is a really nice minimum number, because you get a richness of discussion and perspective. It’s helpful that all of us have coaching clients that we’re working with, so that we can bring material to the supervision. And generally, we organize ourselves into monthly 90-minute sessions on Zoom, and we start each session with a quick check, get everybody’s voice in the room: how are we arriving today, for our work together?

And then we look at what might be stirring for each of us, or for some of us, about a client or a theme or a sticky situation that’s on our mind. And often there are two to three situations, cases, that we’ll talk about in the 90-minute session.

And so the first coach that’s presenting might say, “Just really curious about something that’s going on for me with this client. They continue to reschedule and reschedule. And I’m just wondering how much I should be chasing them for an appointment. And I want to look at what’s coming up for me in this interaction with the client.” And so then we’ll discuss it as a group, we’ll offer perspectives, we’ll help the coach take a wider view, a different view, come back in, and just really consider, what is going on for them?

And then the next coach might bring a situation where they say, “I really need to get involved in new business development. I don’t have enough in the pipeline for my practice, and I want to look at what’s getting in my way of actually reaching out to my network, and cultivating new clients. And I want to do so in the context of a very specific proposal, because I know this client, this prospective client, is looking for a coach. And I haven’t been able to put together my offering for that client.” And we’ll discuss that, we’ll reflect on that.

And then the third client may have a completely different situation, where they’re really stuck with a client, and they’re really wondering, “How do I work with a client who is very much in a stuck place? So the client’s stuck, I’m stuck, how might I proceed?”

And after each case, we’ll usually pause and take two or three minutes’ reflection time to say, “So what did you, what did each of you notice about your own self as coach, by looking at the work of one of your colleagues?”

It’s a rich learning environment, it is a safe environment, it is an environment all about our own learning. So that is how group supervision is structured, and I invite you to consider joining a group.

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