Every day we are exposed to a multitude of stimuli and interruptions that affect our attention and reduce our concentration. The consequences of this include low performance, being constantly alert and having difficulty concentrating. One of the most effective techniques to combat this is mindfulness, which is used by companies to increase their employees’ productivity levels.
Adecco Training, which is part of the Adecco Group and specialises in integrating training and development solutions with business strategy, has analysed the impact of mindfulness on employees’ productivity based on surveys involving businesses and employees.
But what is mindfulness? It is a resource which consists in teaching the brain to focus on a single function, so that the latter can be given the brain’s undivided attention.
In Spain, mindfulness is only a minority practice. According to Adecco Training, only 5% of Spanish employees practise it, despite its many benefits, such as increasing productivity by about 20%.
It is calculated that each worker wastes, on average, about an hour and a half each day in distractions, which is 20% of the working day or eight hours a week . Those who practise this technique are capable of recovering 100% of the time that they previously wasted due to their attention deficit and can get back this 20% of the working day that they previously wasted.
In addition, mindfulness also helps reduce stress at work. 65% of employees state that they feel calmer and more relaxed in the workplace.
However, the effects of mindfulness are not felt immediately, being experienced eight weeks after this technique is put into practice and once certain patterns of behaviour have been acquired. Mindfulness also has other benefits for those who practice it:
- Improves performance: Increases and improves verbal reasoning and memory, making it a good method of increasing cognitive functions.
- Facilitates recovery from stress: Not only does it reduce employees’ stress levels but, moreover, it reduces recovery times after a period of stress.
- Facilitates work: The continued practice of mindfulness makes people less critical of others and improves their ability to listen, which leads to a greater ability to work in a team.
- Reduces time off work: Not only where this is caused by stress, but also due to colds and respiratory infections, reducing the time taken off work and the seriousness of the illnesses.
- Improves emotional intelligence: This type of meditation helps people to handle pain and emotions in the most effective way.
- Improves sleep: The reduction of stress and the improved control of emotions may be beneficial as regards sleep.
- Increases efficiency: By increasing concentration and attention, improving the memory and emotional management, the employee feels much more capable as regards decision taking and will become a much more productive and effective person at work.