A mental health supervisor’s work is to provide advice in crisis situations, offer clinical supervision to their subordinates and have the onus to sign off a treatment plan for a patient. This calls for a highly qualified individual whose skills and personality is refined. A supervisory position is relational and their people skills need to be sharp to achieve good results with the people they supervise. The interviewee therefore needs to be focused and ask specific and target questions to get the best suited individual for the position.
1. Their qualifications
Among the most important questions to ask is what qualifications the potential mental health supervisor possesses. They should hold at least a master’s degree in the field of mental health. This could be counseling, social work, family and marriage therapy or have a PhD in psychology. A candidate who has completed a certification program in clinical supervision and possesses the necessary licenses will be a good candidate.
For a potential mental health supervisor to be deemed a good fit for the job, they need to have worked in a clinical and supervisory role for several years. If it is the first time they are vying for this position, they need to have good knowledge of supervision. The interviewer may ask how their supervisors influenced them and what they would borrow or drop from what they practiced and why.
3. Supervisory style
Different individuals will choose different styles of supervision. For instance a supervisor could choose to delegate responsibilities and only be consulted upon or provide mentorship. Another may be participative and be hands-on in their approach giving guidance and correction. The interviewer needs to know what approach the potential supervisor applies and if it augurs well with their set-up. Asking the potential supervisor to cite difficult situations they supervised helps greatly in the interviewer making a decision.
4. Keeping abreast with developments in the field
The field of mental health is constantly evolving as new research keeps coming up. To stay relevant and effective, a mental health supervisor needs to be informed on current news and changes in the field. An interviewer should ask how they keep themselves relevant. Are they up to date with the current policy changes, financial situation, and new treatment methods? The supervisor candidate needs to give specific ways they stay abreast of changes and developments.
The candidate requires organizational skills. How do they handle their administrative work? Paperwork is as important as the other tasks. They need to deal and report to government agencies and their supervisors as well. They will be called upon to support the Human Resources unit occasionally; can they handle this? They may have the knowledge, but do they know how to support those they supervise? They should be able to create a balance between those they supervise and their customers.
Finally, a good supervisor candidate needs to prove they are motivators and can achieve high levels of productivity. The interviewer needs to find out how they deal with difficult employees and if they have any past experiences of extreme misconduct and how they handled the situation. The decision should be balanced and be in the best interest of the company and the employee.