To describe a successful mentoring scheme designed for mid-career clinician scientists and to examine factors associated with mentee report of positive career impact.
Mixed methods study including in-depth interviews and cross-sectional data collection via an online survey.
Academy of Medical Sciences mentoring scheme set up in 2002 and evaluated in 2010.
One hundred and forty-seven of 227 mentees took part in the study (response rate of 65%). Ten mentees, three mentors and eight stakeholders/scheme staff were selected to participate in in-depth interviews.
Main outcome measures
Qualitative data: Interviews were transcribed, and free text was analysed to identify themes and subthemes in the narrative. Quantitative data: We examined the associations of reported positive career impact of mentoring by performing simple and multiple logistic regression analysis.
Mentoring success was determined by a variety of factors including reasons for selection (e.g. presence of a personal recommendation), mentee characteristics (e.g. younger age), experience and skills of the mentor (e.g. ‘mentor helped me to find my own solutions’) and the quality of the relationship (e.g. ‘my mentor and I set out clear expectations early on’).
Our evaluation demonstrates that both mentor and mentee value mentoring and that careful planning of a scheme including preparation, training and ongoing support of both mentor and mentee addressing expectations, building rapport and logistics are likely to be helpful in ensuring success and benefit from the intervention.