Lookout Mountain Community Services & Motivo: An Inside Look at Agency Telesupervision

Lookout Mountain Community Services (LMCS) is a community mental health agency located in Georgia whose mission is to provide accessible, affordable services to those who may be 4 years of age and older and are in need of mental health and addictive disease treatment.  

LMCS employs pre-licensure candidates and student interns to provide counseling services across four different outpatient clinic locations. Recently, LMCS has partnered with Motivo to provide supervision online. Pre-licensed clinician, Shaleena Woolridge, MA, shares her experience using the platform. 

I Can Only Imagine How Hectic Life Would Be Without It

Shaleena appreciates both the experience and option to engage in supervision remotely via Motivo. She works with Motivo Supervisor Aurielle Williams, LMFT, who is also licensed in Georgia, and states in her bio that one of the reasons she was drawn to supervision was because she believes in giving back to a system that helped her reach her professional goals.

Shaleena finds the design of the video platform itself to be uncluttered, easy to use and easily accessible. Additionally, engaging in supervision with Motivo, specifically, has saved her three important resources: time, money and energy. 

“It’s made it possible for me to connect to a supervisor without the hassle of trying to find an available supervisor in my area that has an opening and doesn’t charge hundreds of dollars per session,” she said. 

Particularly for a full-time clinician working with a vulnerable population, limiting unnecessary stress and time and energy spent commuting are crucial to preventing burnout and maintaining a work-life balance. 

Shaleena says meeting her supervisor online is extremely beneficial. There have been times where I have ran late or she has, that would not have worked for face-to-face meetings. It’s much easier to hop on the computer during our scheduled time and adjust it as needed for our schedules.” 

Developing Clinical Skills – From a Distance 

Shaleena admits that she is usually one to favor computer-based learning in general, and learning from her supervisor online has proven no different, even with more personal, soft-skills, like confidence and trust. “My supervisor does an amazing job helping me develop my clinical skills,” Shaleena says. “She is always there to help if I’m struggling, she has given me several resources on different modalities for therapy and we’ve discussed how to use those modalities in a therapy setting. She always makes sure I feel supported and confident in my abilities.”

The Pros of “Outside” Supervision

Shaleena also notices the difference in working with a supervisor outside of her clinic. She feels there are many benefits this dynamic. “I think having a supervisor outside of LMCS has been beneficial in the way that our sessions are purely based on counseling and not any other concerns with job performance or issues within the clinic setting. We are able to separate work from therapy in a way that’s helpful for me to focus on what I need to.” On the other hand, she also sees when this creates challenges as well. She may need to spend time explaining intake protocol or other day-to-day responsibilities that are specific to LMCS. As with any new job environment or work relationship, there is a learning curve. Generally, this gradually begins to lessen with time and familiarity. 

When The Internet Fails

If Shaleena had to come up with a drawback, she notes that there has been one issue that happened a few times: a dropped internet connection. “We’ve lost connection during sessions and had to log back on,” she remembers, “but that’s going to happen when you use any server.” 

Saving time, money and energy are just a few of the benefits agencies can count on when offering HIPAA-compliant telesupervision for their staff. To find out more about how agencies are leveraging Motivo to fulfill their supervision requirements and streamline the licensure process contact CEO/Founder, Rachel McCrickard at rachel@wearemotivo.com or send us your contact information online.

Emily Donahue

Emily Donahue

Emily Donahue holds a Master's in Mental Health Counseling from Northwestern University. She works as a limited permit therapist at a private practice in Brooklyn, earning her clinical and supervision hours for full licensure. She has a special interest in women and alcohol use and her dream is to meet Irvin Yalom one day.

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