Sample Poetry Paper on Supervision Styles

Supervision Styles

Supervision refers to a process that consists of different patterns of behaviors in which their appropriateness depends on other factors. These factors could include competencies, the needs, philosophies and expectations of both supervisor and supervisee. These factors are also dependent on the situations that need to be addressed accordingly, for instance, settings, tasks, clients and other variables. The main focus during supervisory process is to ensure that there is professional growth and development for both supervisee and supervisor, which is presumed that the final results would be evidenced by provision of optimal services to the clients. In supervisory processes, professional growth and development for both supervisor and supervisee are intensified when clinical teaching or supervision calls for self-analysis and self-evaluation. On the other hand, individual who is subjected to supervision, effective clinical teachings also contribute and encourage critical thinking and development of problem solving skills (Bradley, & Ladany, 2001).

Direct Style

In this style of supervision, supervisors take charge over the supervisees, assume a superior position and take full control of supervisee’s actions. In applying direct style, supervisors informs supervisees on what is expected from them, criticizes their actions, and conduct overall evaluation. Supervisee in this case behaves in a passive way expecting directions, commands and evaluation from the supervisor and hence assumes a subordinate position (Bradley, & Ladany, 2001).

In direct style of supervision, supervisor interaction is necessary during the evaluation feedback stage of the continuum where supervisor is dominant. It is in most cases applicable where the supervisee has just joined a new setting different from previous one or is unfamiliar with the current setting, unskilled or have minimal experience. This style could also take effects where a supervisee has joined a relationship to work with a new client with different terms from norms. Supervisee at this stage assumes a very passive role where they get accustomed to being always monitored, told what to do, being unprepared for clinical interaction, unable to come up with a solution for any problem and always being overcame by the dynamics of specific situations. In this style, if executed to the extreme point, it embodies maximum controlling and responsibilities in the role of a supervisor while ensuring the role of a supervisee is lowered to dependence with minimal contribution and participation in any given situation (Hawkins, Shohet, Ryde & Wilmot, 2012).

Direct style is mostly preferred and applied by many supervisors in different situations and tasks although the frequency of application may also depend on the different views held by both supervisor and supervisee concerning their roles in supervisory process. Some supervisors in firms apply and prefer this style arguing that it results to greater changes in supervisee’s behavior. Direct style saves time since there are no discussions between supervisor and supervisee or negation since one party dominate while the other party is passive accepting orders without questioning. The individual supporting this style also supports their view with the effectiveness and timeliness in execution of tasks when applying direct style emphasizing on the need to maximize productivity when saving time spent in negotiation. This style brings about increased productivity and gaining experience from supervisors, but supervisee’s growth and development is limited to that level of their supervisors due to limited questioning and participation. The supervisees hence do not get a chance to develop problem solving techniques and depend fully with their supervisor’s opinions (Bradley & Ladany, 2001).


This style is appropriate when applied when moving from evaluation feedback stage through transitional stage and finally to self-supervision. This style allows for the growth and development to both supervisor and supervisee through working together to achieve a common goal while optimizing on clients satisfaction. Collaborative style is applied where supervisee has a level of expertise and experience that supervisor can benefit and learn from. The role of a supervisor in this style of supervision is less direct but it is also not passive. Both the participants contribute through assuming responsibilities and providing their required inputs in different degrees and at different times, concerning both clinical and supervision process (Fine & Turner, 2002).

This style helps the participants to set and prepare objectives jointly enhancing optimal results resulting from the synergy created by both supervisor and supervisee. The supervisor in this scenario is supposed to provide feedback while still playing a role of encouraging supervisee boosting their morale and hence motivating them into solving problems. Supervisor also welcomes supervisee input through accepting supervisee’s ideas, involving them in a problem solving process and encouraging them to conduct self-analysis. Supervisors also accepts planning conducted by supervisees, analyses clinical behaviors and respects them, recognizing their value as professionals practitioners and also as normal human beings (Bradley & Ladany, 2001).

In collaborative style, supervisees accept responsibility to fully participate, in providing input, accepting corrections, offering suggestions, question the supervisor where necessary, engage themselves in self-analysis, request for rationale justifications and work towards solving problems while gaining independence. This style equips the supervisee in developing problem solving techniques, think critically and learn to accommodate other people’s opinion. This style helps supervisee acquires prerequisites skills required in becoming a professional practitioner (Fine & Turner, 2002).


In this style of supervision, the burden of responsibilities moves from supervisor to supervisee. The style emphasizes on professional growth to a self-supervision, which is the final stage of continuum that requires continued search for professional growth by conducting self-analysis. The style suggests an equal party relationship between supervisees and supervisors signifying mutual interaction and cooperation. It is more voluntary where parties seek advices through consultation to make decisions. The style is applied when supervisee is fully empowered and is placed in a position where can make own decisions and find solution for a given problem (Hawkins et al., 2012).

The consultative style could be used at appropriate periods in the employment settings, off-campus and in the educational programs. In this style of supervisory process, monitoring of supervisee is not required. In consultative style of supervision, the supervisor behavior is limited to mainly listening to supervisees, supporting ideas, solving problems and where necessary offers direct suggestions deemed appropriate for the situation. For relationships to be a reality in this style, participants must agree to enter into a clear interaction with clear concept of individual’s roles, problem to be solved and steps to be adhered to when coming up with a solution. This will help participants to avoid differences in expectations, which can result to harmful reactions and hence lead into varieties of negative results (Hawkins et al., 2012).

Language Patterns That Differentiate the Use of Each Style

In the first script, supervisor is enquiring from supervisee on whether supervisee followed the guidelines as instructed during the previous meeting. Supervisor is trying to evaluate supervisee effectiveness in following instructions as specified. Supervisor also takes supervisee through behavioral therapy welcoming minimal suggestions from supervisee. Supervisor language is dominating while supervisee plays a passive role of listening to guidelines of successful therapy. Supervisee when asked about any solution to solve a problem of failing to reach a 70% proficiency level lacks idea and hence depends on supervisor’s decision.

In the second script, supervisor and supervisee collaborates and it is evidenced that, supervisor insists on getting suggestions from supervisee towards helping Jonny produce letter “s” correctly in final position words. The supervisor enquires from supervisee on the strategies that were used to ensure Johnny produces correctly, gives suggestions and accommodates supervisee suggestion while giving inputs. The supervisor triggers supervisee to think through asking about what is well known to help supervisee solve the problem at hand, which was to change behavior applying stimuli.

The final script the supervisee assumes the burden of responsibility while seeking advice from the supervisor regarding the strategy to apply to make sure Johnny produce “s” properly. The discussion is full of humor indicating the parties are peers. For instance, supervisor insisting on supervisee actions if the therapy does not succeed and Jonny fails to meet supervisee’s criteria. The supervisee responds jokingly that would commit suicide if results turn below recommended 70% proficiency level. This encounter between supervisor and supervisee indicates that the role played by supervisor is minimal and burden of solving the problem lies on supervisee.


Bradley, L. J., & Ladany, N. (2001). Counselor supervision: Principles, process, and practice. Taylor & Francis.

Fine, M., & Turner, J. (2002). Collaborative supervision. The complete systemic supervisor: Context, philosophy, and pragmatics, 229.

Hawkins, P., Shohet, R., Ryde, J., & Wilmot, J. (2012). Supervision in the helping professions. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).