I am currently working on the last chapter of my book on mentoring programme design (yes, I know I said it would be available earlier this year but it’s not far away now – watch this space), this chapter focusing on programme evaluation.

From my experience working with organisations to help them establish a mentoring programme for staff support and development, a lot of energy, careful planning and organised implementation goes into making the programme a reality. But if you don’t measure the programme’s impact and influence on the mentoring participants and the organisation as a whole, how do you know that mentoring made the differences you wanted? That it influenced and impacted on people’s lives and work? That your mentoring programme is a worthwhile investment now and in the future?

If you already have a mentoring programme established in your organisation, how do you evaluate it? When do you evaluate? And subsequently, what do you do with the evaluation findings? Do they inform the next programme iteration, identify processes that could be improved?

I know I keep asking a whole lot of questions, but that’s the point, isn’t it?

Here are some sample questions you can ask at different stages in your programme, to monitor its progress and determine the impact and outcomes. The answers you get to these questions – your findings – will create the report you give to your programme sponsors or your senior executive team at the conclusion of each programme period.

Programme and Partnership Monitoring

  • How are the mentoring partnerships working?
  • What are the mentees and the mentors gaining from engaging in mentoring?
  • What, if anything, is not working as well as your intended/expected?
  • What external constraints or difficulties are affecting the mentoring partnerships?

Outcome Evaluation

  • What have been the benefits of the programme for the organisation?
  • How have the mentees benefitted from receiving mentoring support?
  • What changes have the mentees made since commencing the mentoring partnership?
  • What changes have the mentors made as a result of engaging in the programme?
  • How effective was the initial mentoring training? Did the workshops sufficiently prepare people for engagement in the programme?

There are many more questions you can ask to collect valuable – and sufficient – data to support the ongoing development and sustainability of your mentoring programme. If you would like to discuss how you could evaluate your organisation’s programme, get in touch – https://petersen.consulting/contact/