Mindfulness in the workplace

Mindfulness and its practice is becoming popular with organisations as they focus more on the well-being of their staff. Mindfulness enables people to be more in the present and work with more discipline and focus.

The way we function in contemporary organisations is not working because employees are more stressed, anxious, burned out and disengaged than ever before. The United Nations International Labour Organisation reports that work-related stress is a major epidemic worldwide with 40 to 60 percent of workers in industrialised economies experiencing moderate to high stress at work.

  • Employees continue to struggle to find ways to work in contemporary always-on, global, high-stress, high-velocity work environments
  • Globally, we know that 85 percent of employees worldwide are not engaged or are actively disengaged in their job
  • (Measured as the degree to which employees feel rationally and emotionally committed to their work and/or organisation)

One positive development that offsets this trend is the growing emphasis on mindfulness and in particular, mindfulness stress reduction programmes.

While the challenges to create a truly thriving workplace can be high, there has been measurable impact through the introduction of mindfulness. We know that thriving workplaces have tangible benefits. For example, organisations that prioritise sustainable employee engagement outperform organisations with low engagement by a factor of 3x, according to global HR consultancy Towers Watson; companies on the FTSE 100 that prioritise employee well-being and engagement outperform competitors by 10 percent, according to the Workwell study conducted by the FTSE; and such companies as SAP, the German enterprise software company, save hundreds of millions in operating profit by investing in employee well-being and engagement. It clearly makes good business sense to address and invest against the deterrents of a healthy workplace.

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