A few years ago, business leaders and human resources professionals found an answer to rising workplace stress, increased incivility, and lowered productivity: mindfulness. Since then, many HR tools and apps are making mindfulness an employee benefit with measurable results.
We could all be a bit more mindful. In this context, I mean mindfulness as a strong sense of being and a strong sense of the others around you. In other words, if you’re mindful, you’re thinking of others and how your work fits in with the larger company mission while never losing sight of your responsibilities. Of course, ‘mindfulness’ also has to do with meditation, focus, and generally using your brain better. Over the past few years, as HR managers have come to embrace a sense of mindfulness in their employees, new tools and apps have been developed to help employees stay mindful and engaged in the workplace and their normal lives outside of work.
Being truly mindful in our professional and personal lives is extremely difficult, and there’s no magic smartphone app that will suddenly turn you into a meditation master, but when companies buy into mindfulness and use technology to their advantage, the results are often overwhelmingly positive.
Internal Mindfulness Tools
Many times you don’t need to buy a service or have your employees install employee communications apps on their phone to get results from your mindfulness initiatives. Often, the hardest part about making an office more mindful is practicing mindfulness every day. Making mindfulness a daily work practice takes time and patience as a manager, but when paired with the right introduction and training, you can help your employees form habits that lead to better productivity and a more inviting office overall.
Introducing a new emphasis on being mindful will test your employee communications systems. No matter which tools and apps you choose, you’ll need to introduce your employees to a new way of doing things, which always involves telling your employees why you’re making these changes. Explaining why is difficult, and different workforces take and use different information differently. You know best how your office will respond to changes and new information.
A Few Useful Tools and Apps
Mindfulness takes more than new gadgets, but there are many products out there designed to help you and your workforce catch on to this rising trend.
- Meditation VR: Virtual reality is creeping into more entertainment and video spaces, and HR is no different. Several new companies are providing new meditation VR services to help with corporate mindfulness.
- Meditation apps: Headspace got much of the favorable press last year, but now there are many options for making it easier for employees to find the time in their busy days to meditate and de-stress.
- Wearable stress indicators: Wearable technology like WellBe measures your daily stress levels in real time. They use bodily indicators to measure stress levels and help people protect themselves from stress attacks and other problems.
Make Mindfulness Work
Mindfulness is about avoiding stress and fostering better teamwork. Technology in this area is evolving quickly, with the ability to take your employees on virtual meditation retreats and more already improving. What will set your mindfulness push apart from unsuccessful ones is employee communications and getting their input.