This study explores the coordination mechanisms managed by the central governments of the European Union (EU) in order to develop negotiation positions for their plenipotentiaries in the Council. Utilizing novel data from an expert survey, the first part examines the relationships within and between the structures and processes of EU coordination, the actors involved, and the mechanisms' efficacy. The analysis shows that highly formalized coordination mechanisms are associated with developing timely, clear and consistent negotiation positions. The second part allocates the 28 member states' EU coordination mechanisms into different clusters, including unicentric, pluricentric, decentric, proactive, reactive, politicized, depoliticized, high efficacy and low efficacy. Intriguing differences are identified, such as the fact that the Central and Eastern European member states' mechanisms are typically more reactive where coordination centres on the national capital and the Council negotiations.