More and more top name businesses have implemented mindfulness programs into the workplace in recent years with impressive results. Insurance company Aetna, for instance, rolled out a mindfulness program that has effectively reduced employee turnover, cut down on sick days, and improved overall business performance across the board. Companies like Google and Procter & Gamble have also see notable results. After implementing its mindfulness program in 2013, Business law firm Berger Singerman has seen significant improvements in the areas of professional performance, focus, listening skills, collaboration, and professionalism in its firm of 85 attorneys and 165 employees. Here’s a closer look at mindfulness and what it can do for small businesses.
Why Mindfulness Is Relevant
One of the biggest benefits a mindfulness practice offers small businesses is a fostering of increased perception and focus among all employees. The study of mindfulness promotes improved listening and observation (and thus data gathering skills), which in turn boosts communication skills and helps employees to work together more effectively. With mindfulness, employees are better able to stay on task, which means a higher degree of efficiency. And a strong mindfulness emphasis in the workplace has also been proven to reduce stress, which in turn leads to even better performance ratings.
Mindfulness practice also helps employees in the workplace to develop a stronger awareness and sensitivity toward others, which translates to stronger customer service and client relationship skills. Being able to key in to important cues like body language and tone of voice helps employees be more effective in working with clients and yields higher levels of performance.
Introducing Mindfulness in the Workplace
There are a couple of different approaches you can take to implementing a workplace mindfulness program in your business space. A mindfulness expert can be brought in who can assess the business and its current dynamics, and customize a program under which to educate and train employees. Alternatively (and if you’re lucky), you can tap an employee or leader who is knowledgeable in the practice to develop and lead the program.
Singerman, Paul. “Mindfulness in the Workplace: Enhanced Performance and Happier Employees for Small Businesses.” The Huffington Post. 1/27/16. (1/31/16.)