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Mindfulness training in the workplace: exploring its scope and outcomes

Karen R. Johnson (Department of Learning Technologies, University of North Texas , Denton, Texas, USA)
Sunyoung Park (School of Leadership and Human Resource Development, Louisiana State University , Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA)
Sanghamitra Chaudhuri (College of Management, Metropolitan State University , Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA)

European Journal of Training and Development

ISSN: 2046-9012

Article publication date: 20 January 2020

Issue publication date: 17 June 2020

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Abstract

Purpose

As the concept of mindfulness gains popularity in the workplace, there is a need to understand the extent to which mindfulness-related practices are integrated into training and development activities and the impact of these practices on employees and organizations. The purpose of this study is to provide an overview of the scope of mindfulness as an intervention in the workplace and to identify outcomes of mindfulness-related training activities at the individual, job/work, team/group and organizational levels.

Design/methodology/approach

Torraco (2005) and Briner and Denyer's (2012) four steps (search, selection, analysis and synthesis) for conducting an integrative literature review were used for this study. This method enabled us to compare and contrast relevant articles, integrate distributed information, create new knowledge and provide research directions on mindfulness practices in work settings.

Findings

Through a revision of 28 empirical studies, the authors found that mindfulness-based training is an effective intervention for organizations to improve mental health, wellbeing and performance of employees. A total of 51 significant outcomes of mindfulness-related training categorized at the individual (23), job/work (17), group/team (7) and organizational (4) levels were identified.

Practical implications

Despite the benefits of mindfulness training, according to the research, only a handful of organizations have rolled-out this program for employees. The authors recommend that industry leaders and managers take a proactive approach and incorporate mindfulness-related practices as part of their professional development training for employees at all levels to improve personal and professional growth and performance.

Originality/value

This paper extends the emerging literature on mindfulness by providing a comprehensive summary of the consequences of mindfulness training at a multilevel context within the human resource development domain.

Keywords

Citation

Johnson, K.R., Park, S. and Chaudhuri, S. (2020), "Mindfulness training in the workplace: exploring its scope and outcomes", European Journal of Training and Development, Vol. 44 No. 4/5, pp. 341-354. https://doi.org/10.1108/EJTD-09-2019-0156

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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