Executive Report 2017 – The State of Play in European Coaching & Mentoring: Mentoring

Jonathan Passmore, Hazel Brown, Zoltan Csigas et al

We’d love to share with you some of the finding from the research commissioned by EMCC and undertaken by a team of researchers in 50 countries across Europe.

Passmore, J, Brown, H, Csigas, Z & the European Coaching and Mentoring Research Consortium (2017) The State of Play in European Coaching & Mentoring – Executive Report. Henley-on-Thames: Henley Business School and EMCC International ISBN 978-1-912473-00-7

What is mentoring ?

Mentoring has evolved over the past three decades and embraces a wide range of activities, from formal mentoring relationships that support individuals at work to less formal arrangements helping individuals develop knowledge, insight and experience in a wide range of areas, both inside and outside of work. In this research we defined mentoring as:

‘A long term relationship that meets a development need, offered by a senior or more experienced individual to a junior or less experienced individual where the less experienced individual receives guidance, advice and support to help their development’.

Evidence of the contribution of mentoring to the workplace

The past three decades has seen a wealth of research into the role mentoring can play in supporting individual development. This evidence confirms that mentoring is a valuable
tool for supporting individuals; its benefits include short-term career advancement, accelerated learning and psychological benefits such as the development of personal confidence and positive self-regard (1). There is also strong evidence to support the value of mentoring under-represented groups, helping them to address disadvantage and discrimination in order to progress their careers (2). Evidence seems to suggest this is best achieved when there is a match between mentor and mentee, which leads to an effective relationship between the two parties (3).

The responses from this section were generated from 245 mentors, although not all participants (mentors) answered all questions. The results indicates that mentoring is most frequently used for supporting leadership development and that the average mentor is contributing 3-7 hours per month to mentoring, although many are contributing more hours per month.

Types of Mentoring (mentors only)

Mentoring time (mentors only)

Evaluating mentoring (mentors only)

Management of mentoring schemes

Scheme design and management

The growth in the use of mentoring schemes across Europe, the USA and beyond has allowed examples of good practice to develop about how schemes should be designed, managed and evaluated (4). However, there remains a lack of comparative and transnational research exploring the types of mentoring, who receives mentoring and the benefits that organisations believe it offers to their employees.

The respondents to this section were in-company mentoring scheme managers. In total 93 respondents completed questions in this section, of which 89 were in Europe and from 26 different countries. The results confirm most organisations (53%) run both formal and informal mentoring, with mentoring making a large contribution to higher staff morale (57%) and improved communication in the organisation (62%).

Types of mentoring

Who receives mentoring

Benefits of mentoring


1 Tong, C & Kram, K (2013) The efficacy of mentoring. In: J Passmore, D Peterson & T Freire (eds) The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of the Psychology of Coaching & Mentoring. Chichester: Wiley
2 Ortiz-Walter, R & Gilson, L L (2013) Mentoring programs for under-represented groups. In: J Passmore, D Peterson & T Freire (eds) The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of the Psychology of Coaching & Mentoring. Chichester: Wiley
3 Ragins, B, Cotton, J & Miller, J (2000) Marginal mentoring. Academy of Management Journal, 43 (6), 1177–94
4 Stokes, P & Merrick, L (2013) Designing mentoring schemes for organisations. In: J Passmore, D Peterson & T Freire (eds) The Wiley Blackwell Handbook of the Psychology of Coaching & Mentoring. Chichester: Wiley