Reflective Practice and Supervision for Coaches

Reflective Practice and Supervision for Coaches

Reflective Practice and Supervision for Coaches

Reflective Practice and Supervision for Coaches


Why are reflection and supervision important for coaches? How might increased self awareness improve competence? What kind of activities might a coach consider to develop their own reflective practices? This practical book helps coaches to improve their practice through reflection and professional support in their work. It explains how these developments can be made alone, with colleagues or with a supervisor, utilising a range of tried and tested frameworks. Starting with a section on the function of reflection and supervision in the coaching arena, the book moves on to discuss ways that the processes of reflection and supervision might be analyzed. Finally, the book addresses some specific models that coaches might like to try to improve their practice. The book assumes that the reader has no prior knowledge of the theories used and contains concise summaries of them as well as giving references to further reading for those who are interested. It also contains activities which will help the reader to think carefully about how they are doing things in order to identify options for improvement. Reflective Practice and Supervision for Coaches is a resource that can be used over time, with activities that can be repeated intermittently as needs arise. It provides key reading for professional coaches and supervisors as well as those who facilitate reflection upon working practices in the coaching profession.


The coaching world is expanding. A profession that was largely unknown a decade ago is now an attractive second career for increasing numbers of people looking for new ways of growing their interest in the development of people. Some observers reckon that the number of new coaches joining the market is doubling every year.

Yet while there are many books which cater for the beginner coach, including my own book, also published by Open University Press, Coaching Skills: A Handbook, there are relatively few which explore and deepen more specialist aspects of the role. That is the purpose of this series. It is called Coaching in Practice because the aim is to unite theory and practice in an accessible way. The books are short, designed to be easily understood without in any way compromising on the integrity of the ideas they explore. All are written by senior coaches with, in every case, many years of hands-on experience.

This series is for you if you are undertaking or completing your coaching training and perhaps in the early stages of the unpredictability, pleasures and dilemmas that working with actual clients brings. Now that you have passed the honeymoon stage, you may have begun to notice the limitations of your approaches and knowledge. You are eager for more information and guid ance. You probably know that it is hard to make the leap between being a good-enough coach and an outstanding one. You are thirsty for more help and challenge. You may also be one of the many people still contemplating a career in coaching. If so, these books will give you useful direction on many of the issues which preoccupy, perplex and delight the working coach.

That is where I hope you will find the Coaching in Practice series so useful.

Other titles in this series are about hands-on work with clients. This one is about the equally important topic of how you build a coaching business. Being a coach means that you are in effect running a small business, but what does this mean in practice? How is the coaching market developing and what are the implications for any coach? How should you sustain yourself while you are building your business? Which promotional activities really pay off and which are waste of time and money? Coaching programmes are typically short and finite so it is essential to have a steady stream of new clients, but how do you find them, and even more importantly, how do you sell with integrity? This book aims to give you practical guidance on all of these topics—and more, from someone who has been there and done it.

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