There are many reasons to seek out clinical supervision: Work becomes intense, specific challenges with cases, limited supervision at organization, limited degree of interaction with other clinicians, or seeking a new professional license. Whatever the reason, it is helpful to seek a supervisor that fits your needs, style, and clinical focus.
Many supervisors offer initial sessions to see if the relationship is a “fit.” Researching potential supervisors can help you decide on a supervisor. Here are a few areas to consider in no particular order; this is not an exhaustive list.
- Credentials: It is important to ensure the supervisor is able to supervise clinicians. This is especially important if you are seeking a professional license as there are specific requirements for each license.
- Years in practice as a supervisor and as clinician: It is helpful to find someone experienced in both therapy and supervision. Being a skilled clinician does not automatically make one a skilled supervisor and vice versa. Again, there are some set requirements for specific licensing supervisors. You should check with your profession's licensing board to ensure the supervisor meets the requirements.
- Supervision Model: Does the supervisor follow a specific model? Supervision is a specific practice with models that guide the process.
- Clinical style and knowledge: Does the supervisor have knowledge and competency to supervise you on the modalities, theories, and populations you work with?
- Feedback: What is your preferred way of receiving feedback? Is the supervisor's style compatible with yours?
- Relationship: Remember this is a professional relationship that builds over time through open, honest feedback and support. Starting with a a good base can aid in the development of the working relationship.