1st Edition

An Existential and Phenomenological Approach to Coaching Supervision

By Monica Hanaway Copyright 2022
    178 Pages 11 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    178 Pages 11 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    As the methodology for coaching supervision has grown and developed in recent years, so too has the need for comprehensive engagement with the needs of supervisees. This ground-breaking and much-needed new book from Monica Hanaway presents a unique existential approach to coaching supervision.

    This book includes an introduction to the model, with emphasis on the philosophical focus of the existential coaching approach and concepts such as uncertainty, freedom, emotions, values and beliefs, meaning, and relatedness. Hanaway offers supervisors ways of working with their supervisees on each of the key existential themes, as well as a comparison with other coaching supervision models.

    This book describes how a supervisor can bring an existential approach into their work, both with existential coaches and with those working in different modalities who are interested in adding to their portfolio of service. It will be of immense value to academics and students of coaching psychology.

    Part One 01. The meaning and role of supervision in professionals concerned with the support, development and treatment of others 02. The current position of coaching supervision Part Two 03. The main themes of existential thinking 04. Phenomenological investigation 05. The existentially informed coaching approach Part Three 06. Bringing an existential approach to supervising coaches 07. Practical ways for exploring existential issues in supervision 08. Ethical Considerations in existential coaching supervision Part Four 09. Case example 1: The Unsuccessful Chemistry Session 10. Case example 2: Working with Authenticity, Meaning and Emotion 11. Case example 3: Working with Paradox, Self-esteem, Emotion, and Relatedness  12. Case example 4: Working with Existential Dimensions


    Monica Hanaway is an executive and leadership coach, business consultant, mediator, psychotherapist, and trainer. She has authored The Existential Leader, An Existential Approach to Leadership Challenges, Handbook of Existential Coaching Practice, and Psychologically Informed Mediation. She is passionate in her mission to bring existential thought beyond the academic arena into the business and wider world, believing it is an approach which has a lot to offer to these uncertain times.

    "Monica Hanaway sees perfectly the whole process of coaching supervision, through as in an x-ray. She generously shares with her readers the latest discoveries, offering both a theoretical score on coaching supervision and concrete examples. The book came to me at exactly the right time, inspiring to try new techniques in working with clients during consultations. Monica Hanaway has the talent to explain theoretically complicated notions in a comprehensive style, simultaneously keeping the highest standards of professional research."

    • Dana Rone, Sworn Advocate at Law, Certified Mediator, Docent in Turiba University

    "I’m delighted that Monica Hanaway has followed up her Handbook for Existential Coaching Practice with this book aimed at supervisors. I am unaware of any other books in this field. Whilst not being didactic it gives a very clear picture of how existential coaching supervision can look. She shows this through reference to theory, practical approaches and the use of case examples."

    • Colleen Harris, MVO, FRSA, MICG, Personal Brand Coach, Communications Adviser, Diversity Adviser, Deputy Lieutenant of Greater London

    "Monica Hanaway has shown very clearly how supervision, a practice that tends to be associated with psychotherapy, works with existential coaching. I particularly liked how she compares the expectations of a psychotherapeutic supervisor and a coaching supervisor from an existential and phenomenological perspective. The readers of this book will come away with a clear understanding of existential coaching supervision, existential coaching and existential phenomenological thinking. I see this book being of great value for experienced and less experienced supervisors of coaches and psychotherapists."

    • Diana Mitchell, Supervisor, Coach, Psychotherapist

    "Monica brings us closer to the supervision of coaching as a strategy that is concise and assertive, a strategy where listening, pausing and the suspension of the judgment prevails in addressing the description of the phenomena in supervision. I appreciate the practical style Monica Hanaway has used to bring her professional life into the writing of this book. When reading it, I identified with the coach, as someone who has the challenge of live supervision to improve professional performance. Monica goes further and connects deeply with her coachee, as shown the practical examples in the book, where paradoxes and apparent contradictions emerge, which Monica masterfully turns into sources of learning for readers.

    With this book, I was able to explore the rebelliousness of the existential-phenomenological approach by reading how non-directive support is given to the coachee."

    • Carlos Ignacio Gallego Soto, Master in Social Psychology, Leadership Mentor, Business Consultant, University Adjunct Associate Professor, and Associate Professor at Diálogo Existencial – Existential Dialogue – Center for Studies in Existential Philosophy and Phenomenology

    "Monica Hanaway has a deep understanding, knowledge and applicability of existential tenets, in coaching and its use in supervision.

    Her framework in supervision is based on phenomenological investigation, that allows the supervisee to consider their work from an existential phenomenological perspective.
    I consider myself privileged having had the opportunity to working alongside Monica for a few years at Regents University London, where I could witness in practice, everything that she is incorporating in the present book, plus -what can be considered as essential qualities for an existential phenomenological supervisor, such as her warmth, excellent quality of listening, respect of the supervisee’s silence and her willingness to give the necessary space, in order for the work to be explored."

    • Luci Moja, Supervisor, Coach, Psychotherapist and Academic

    "As one of the first of its kind, this book addresses the highly pertinent issue of the place of supervision in coaching. Building on her Handbook for Existential Coaching the author highlights the key factors that identify an existential approach to supervision packing the book with case examples of how paradox, incertitude, and relationality can be acknowledged and held as part of the supervisory relationship."

    • John Nuttall, Asst Dean and Head of School of Psychotherapy and Psychology, Regent’s University London, Certified Management Consultant

    "Existentialism offers a unique perspective, not just on coaching and supervision, but on our human experience in general. While all supervisors will be able to relate to many of the themes described in this book, Monica Hanaway once again does a superb job in linking theory to practice and placing the tangible professional challenges and dilemmas of supervision practice within a sound philosophical framework. Both novice and experienced coaching supervisors will benefit greatly from this book’s concise introduction to the existential landscape and approach, its thorough exploration of how the most prominent existential thinkers can contribute to everyday issues in coaching supervision, and its practical application of the phenomenological method through the use of detailed case studies. In true existential fashion, the book grounds its existential-phenomenological approach to supervision in philosophical inquiry and sound ethics. Another important milestone on the road to anchoring coaching supervision in solid philosophical roots."

    • Yannick Jacob, Existential Coach (MA), Positive Psychologist (MSc), Coach Trainer & Supervisor (FMR Programme Leader MSc Coaching Psychology), Mediator (conflict resolution) and author of ‘An Introduction to Existential Coaching’

    "It is a challenge to write a book on supervision which is consistent with the existential-phenomenological rather than a directive approach. Monica Hanaway works with the tension of acknowledging the importance of ‘unknowing’ whilst offering clear ways to integrate the existential-phenomenological approach into supervision."

    • Mugur Mitroi, President of Mediation Council of Romania 

    "In this latest literary offering Monica Hanaway takes further critical strides to make explicit the relevance and importance of the existential approach, in this case, to the world of coaching supervision.

    Supervision, and especially existential supervision, remains the key personal and professional development practice for the committed coach. In this work Monica takes our understanding of existential coaching supervision from potentially some sort of mystical, dark art to a clearly articulated, accessible and powerful practice. This is an evolution of understanding that has relevance for both newly qualified coaches and supervisors to seasoned practitioners.

    On a personal note, as a coaching supervisee of Monica’s, I also have the privilege of being able to attest to the hugely positive impact Monica’s coaching supervision has had on me over the years. She truly practices what she writes."

    • Jamie Reed, Team and Leadership Coach, Director of Human Leadership Ltd.

    "I value Monica’s books very highly because of their intrinsic emphasis on putting theory into practice. In this book her valuable approach, concentrating on the key strengths of existentialist philosophy, including freedom of choice, agency and responsibility, is combined with a focus on phenomenology, all of which are set in the context of coaching supervision. This latter, to me, means above all a recognition that all interactions and relationships are a process of discovery, calibration and refinement. In this context in particular the case examples are very helpful, as is the detailed discussion of ethics and ethical codes. This useful book is therefore also highly recommended to anyone in a management role, but particularly those who supervise, motivate and coach managers, team leaders and supervisors."

    • Thomas Hyrkiel, Head of Publishing, Global Company

    "Having produced the Handbook of Existential Coaching Practice, Monica has filled another gap with this new and innovative book in which she provides a framework for supervisors wanting to use an existential approach in their work with coaches. Monica writes from the distinct perspective of a successful business leader, coach, mediator, psychotherapist, supervisor, lecturer. Monica passes this knowledge on in the most effective way in her new book bringing in the very special existential perspective. As someone has been supervised and trained by her, I have witnessed her expert ability to tease out the significant, introspective questions that gently challenge one to reflect upon core values or behaviours, and ways of working. I would highly recommend this book to supervisors, students, coaches, and anyone interested in knowing more about the practical use of existential ideas in coaching and supervision."

    • Marni Alexander, Coach and Therapist

    "Monica’s extraordinary ability to listen with immense depth and creativity leads to very apposite and useful suggestions through which I can support my coaching clients.  Her gift of language and expressiveness yield words of immense insight and clarity.  I always learn from Monica. Her wisdom and empathy is rare and when combined with her skills and modesty makes it a privilege to have her as my supervisor. In this book she explains the theoretical basis to her existential approach to coaching supervision, following it with practical examples."

    • Sue Blum, Coach and Mediator

    "Monica is an expert in the theoretical principles and the lived experiences that imbue the progressive thread that runs throughout this book. She outlines the philosophical foundations of the ‘existential givens’ that form the subtle structure to all our lives, and then she shows how supervisors can translate this knowledge into practice, helping to bring supervisees’ experiences and worldviews into the light. Monica culminates with five case-studies that highlight how supervisors and supervisees can engage with seemingly intractable paradoxes that emerge through supervision. The combination of theory, practice, and worked examples will give readers confidence in supervising authentically."

    • Dr Mark Burgess, Research Lead and Teaching Fellow (Social Psychology), Oxford Brookes University, Oxford

    "I find that existential coaching is always best when it reverberates in the edgy, nuanced truth of our lived experience. Monica captures this in her work as a supervisor and in her writing. In An Existential and Phenomenological Approach to Coaching Supervision, Monica answers the questions that coaches want to ask and several others that they haven’t yet considered – but should! As such it provides an invaluable source of wisdom and guidance for anyone in this profession."

    • Dr Nigel Smaller, Coach, Psychotherapist and Supervisor