‘Does the evidence show that mindfulness is really useful in the workplace?’, one of our clients asked recently.
And our answer? That the evidence is ‘increasingly compelling’.
Mindfulness is already well known for being effective in reducing stress and increasing wellbeing. But what about its value in productivity, resilience or performance?
A wide range of recent studies have cited the specific business benefits of mindfulness within organisations, including:
- Reduced costs of staff absenteeism and turnover
- Improved cognitive function – (i.e. better concentration, memory and learning ability)
- Improved productivity
- Enhanced employer/employee and client relationships
- Enhanced employee job satisfaction
Underpinning these outcomes are some key research studies which have shown that teaching mindfulness can lead to:
- Stress reduction (Shapiro, Schwartz, Bonner, 1998).
- Enhanced learning (Varra, Hayes, Roget & Fisher, 2008).
- Improved creativity (Bond & Bunce, 2001)
- Better mental health, job satisfaction and work performance (Bond & Bunce, 2003).
Tellingly, a number of high profile companies (Google, BBC, PWC, Deutsche Bank, Apple, NASA and Astra Zeneca) have now introduced mindfulness teaching free to their staff.
From our clinical work we know that mindfulness has the capacity to change individual lives. But from our wider work we also know that mindfulness training has the capacity to do much, much more across teams and organisations.
Langer, E. (1989). Mindfulness.
Boyatzis, R. & McKee, A. (2005) Resonant Leadership. Renewing yourself and connecting with Others through Mindfulness, hope and compassion.
Goleman, D. & Kabat Zinn, J. (2007) Mindfulness @ Work. A Leading with emotional Intelligence
Hayes, S., Bond, F., and Barnes Holmes, D., (2004). Acceptance and Mindfulness at Work: Applying Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and Relational Frame Theory to Organizational Behavior Management.
Chaskalson, M., (2011). The Mindful Workplace: Developing Resilient Individuals and Resonant Organizations with MBSR