Coaching Supervision vs Mentoring

by Kris Koonar - Date: 2006-11-05 - Word Count: 499 Share This!

Supervision is not a new concept. The execution method and amount of supervision required varies depending on the situation. Supervision is necessary as it not only enhances workers knowledge and skills of their job, but also provides psychological support so that they can perform their responsibilities with self-assurance. Supervision also ensures maintenance and implementation of high quality work.

Coaching supervision:

Like other workers coaches also need supervision in order to enhance their skills. However, the supervision given to coaches is quite different from the management supervision in companies. In this competitive world, hiring coaches is becoming increasingly popular; therefore, it is necessary for coaches, in turn, to deliver their best. Hence, they undergo supervision to hone their skills because it allows them to reflect and review their job performance.

Most associations involved in the field of coaching recognize the benefits of coaching supervision. Organizations like European Mentoring and Coaching Council (EMCC) are involved in the promotion of good quality coaching as well as mentoring. They bring together people who buy coaching, and those who give out coaching services, to promote quality. People who buy these coaching or mentoring services gain confidence because they know that their coach is being professionally supervised. This means there will be control over the quality of the services, and the subsequent results. Corporations consider it mandatory for the coaches they hire to come under the supervision of a senior and experienced practitioner.


Although coaching supervisors and mentors use communication and interpersonal skills, they are different from each other. Even effective mentors need good coaching skills. Mentors are an internal part of any organization. They work without any agenda and people can share professional as well as personal details with their mentor.

Mentors also impart knowledge and skills required to become a professional, along with guidance and emotional support; something that coaches do not provide.

Coaching supervision vs. mentoring:

When supervision is weighed against mentoring, coach mentoring carries more weight. Supervision alone cannot deliver the desired results. Supervision is limited to the process of overseeing the coaches. Whereas, to improve the quality of coaching, proper mentoring is also necessary, because it ensures development on the professional level and provides external support.

Mentors are meant to conversant with their client field to enable them to understand and perform effectively. For a coach to be able to bring about good results, it is important for them to be provided adequate training and education. It is also essential for them to share both professional and personal details to acquire the best advice. The approach ought to be more about self-discovery, rather than mere performance. Hence, enhancement of performance along with personal growth should be the priority. Mentoring plays an important role in ensuring this as the emphasis is based on guiding a person in the right direction instead of providing a list of skills that need to be achieved. Performance skills can be effective only when a person is guided towards it. Mentoring can help you lead your life in a balanced manner.

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