We live in a world filled with distractions and smart-gadgets that are all but tethered to our bodies. And with the EOFY rush, it’s easy to lose sight of the present. A concept that has been sweeping the marketing industry of late is one encouraging us to shift gears and focus on the here and now. This concept is also helping organisations drive employee engagement which in turn is having a positive impact on economic outcomes.
The concept is called mindfulness.
What is mindfulness?
Concepts of mindfulness originate from the thousand-year-old Buddhist teachings of vipassana, which means “insight into the true nature of reality”. Mindfulness has since taken roots in Western culture and has permeated the professional sphere. Today, it can be understood as a way of slowing down, focusing our attention to improve productivity, awareness and mental stability.
How is mindfulness relevant to your industry?
In Australia, dealing with growing issues of stress in the workplace is quickly becoming a priority for most businesses. A report from the Australian Psychological Society indicates that 1 in 4 workers felt moderately to severely distressed in the past year alone. And an American study found that happier employees were 12% more productive, took 10 times fewer sick days and those companies outperformed their competition by 20%. So, for many, mindfulness strategies can be the key to increasing employee engagement, productivity, retention and in turn, a better bottom line.
It’s no wonder that more and more industries are adopting mindfulness practices into their everyday. Here are a few notable examples:
– Search engine giant, Google, have a hired their very own Head of Mindfulness Training
– Apple employees are encouraged to take 30 minutes a day to meditate at work and employees at Nike have access to relaxation rooms
– Boston Consulting Group have offered their employees the opportunity to take part in programs and workshops surrounding mindfulness since 2016. They bragged about the positive changes that these initiatives have had on their employees’ mindsets with a 27% increase in good relationships, 24% increase work/life balance, 18% decrease in stress, 18% increase in engagement, 16% increase in performance and was recommended by 100% of the participants
– Management consulting firm McKinsey & Co are also embracing mindfulness both internally but for their multi-million dollar clients as well. In one case, a meditation program developed by McKinsey for an Australian client saved the business more than $20 million.
From a marketing perspective:
Great marketing is built around creating individual real-time moments & memories that stand out, that connect and that matter. Because of this, mindfulness is becoming a popular topic at marketing conferences and workshops. Mindful marketing is about introducing more insight, more creativity through curiosity & reflection.
So we ask:
How do you practice mindfulness in your workplace? What are some strategies your company uses to ensure employees remain in the present moment – engaged and satisfied?