Date of Conferral







Susan Rarick


Researchers have written extensively on many facets of supervision in the counseling profession, including the supervisee benefits associated with a strong supervisory working alliance. While the majority of studies have focused on the working alliance in academic settings with student trainees, there has been a lack of research exploring the role of the supervisory working alliance in workplace settings, where supervision can be different from supervision offered in a university clinic or counseling center. Employee job dissatisfaction has been a problem identified within the mental health workforce. Researchers have identified effective supervision as a mediating factor. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between the theoretical construct of the supervisory working alliance and job satisfaction. This multiple regression study included 250 workers who were providing direct services to persons with severe mental illness or severe emotional and behavioral disorders. Results yielded a significant relationship between the supervisees' perception of the supervisory working alliance, as measured by the Supervisory Working Alliance Inventory, and job satisfaction, as measured by the Job Satisfaction Survey. Specifically, participants who rated the supervisory working alliance higher were also more likely to report higher levels of job satisfaction. The implications for social change include knowledge useful for educators, trainers, supervisors, and supervisees seeking to promote positive outcomes of workers and clients in community mental health settings. Low job satisfaction leads to generally poorer client outcomes. The ability to understand the supervisory working alliance's influence on job satisfaction is beneficial to advancing the treatment for persons with chronic mental illness.