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Mindfulness & Employee Retention

Some Facts: Irish businesses expect average staff turnover to be 11% in 2019 (Adare Human Resource Management). The same survey showed that it costs €13,100 on average to replace each of these workers.  As Ireland reaches full employment it’s likely this cost will only increase.

A survey by Allgo of 150 Irish HR professionals showed that the two most challenging issues facing them in 2019 was Recruitment (#1) and Retention (#2).

Does it make a difference to Employee Retention having more mindful employees?

A 2014 US study(1) of approximately 100 restaurant servers found there was a negative correlation between Mindfulness and Turnover Intention.  Those who were more mindful were better able to handle the stress and strains of a busy work environment.

“Mindful individuals tend to observe potentially stressful events ….in a more open, non-judgmental way,…..”

“Mindfulness has also been shown to shorten the life cycle of emotional reactions, leading to a quicker recovery from the experience of negative emotions..”

The study demonstrated that, an ability to better handle workplace stress meant that individuals were less likely to want to leave that type of environment.  Their Turnover Intention was lower.

In 2017, a study(2) was carried out among 300 call center employees in a US Multinational company operating in India.  They found that those who were more mindful (as measured using the MAAS scale) experienced less emotional exhaustion in their jobs.  Employees were also asked to rank their feelings about Turnover Intention based on the following statements.

“I am seriously thinking about quitting my job”

“I am actively looking for a job outside this company”

“As soon as I can find a better job, I’ll leave this company.”

It found there was a strong positive correlation among employees who reported lower emotional exhaustion (higher Mindfulness) and their turnover intention.  The more mindful they were, the less likely to want to leave their job at the call centre.

(1) Dane, E., & Brummel, B. J. (2014). Examining workplace mindfulness and its relations to job performance and turnover intention. Human Relations

(2) Reb, J., Narayanan, J., Chaturvedi, S., & Ekkirala, S. (2017). The mediating role of emotional exhaustion in the relationship of mindfulness with turnover intentions and job performance. Mindfulness,

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