Mindfulness Training for Managers or Reflective Thinking in Companies

by Moris Beracha

Moris Beracha.- The IESA in Caracas is one of the business schools in Latin America that commands our greatest respect, not only because it is located in my country but because of the academic excellence it has always shown even in times of adversity like those that Venezuela has faced. That is why I keep welcoming how its training programs are as competitive as those of other similar institutions in other countries.

One of those IESA management workshops is called “Mindfulness for effective leadership” that is presented not as a way to reduce the stress or anxiety that may be caused by business decisions, an aspect that is already an achievement; but also because it offers necessary tools for teamwork and improving performance indices.

My intention is precisely to refer to and share this aspect of Mindfulness, linked to the managerial world, presented by the IESA. In recent years, the number of companies has increased, which through its human resources departments, or as I like to call it human capital, have decided to include this kind of program obtaining important benefits in its management team and in a good part of its labor force.

The technological companies are the first to have dabbled with the use of Mindfulness gaining important results in the way people understand that there is always space and time for everything. What I Simply mean is that each person starts to become aware of how to divide their time, how to share with their work, their partner, family, friends and also with themselves.

One of the most important objectives achieved through these workshops is that the individual becomes reflective about the activities they carry out, making them sensitive to the importance of thinking about the tasks that are performed in order to avoid being assumed as a mere mechanical work.

A study conducted by the Spanish Association for People Management and Development (Aedipe) indicates important achievements by companies in Catalonia and Navarra that are using Mindfulness in their processes, starting with the prevention of occupational risks leading to a reduction in stress levels linked to work up to 47%.

Another aspect highlighted by the research is that the use of Mindfulness among workers, as well as permanent coaching sessions and the so called mentoring, have become important factors not only for the recruitment of human talent but mainly for retention.

The findings made in these programs show five aspects of Mindfulness: 1. Understanding the changes within organizations; 2. Development of more effective labor relations; 3 Greater innovation in decision-making; 4. Internal leadership; and 5. Greater effectiveness in the diagnosis of faults.

Of course, similar studies are not lacking in the United States. One of them was carried out by the National Business Group on Health, which revealed that in 2016 around 22% of the companies had a Mindfulness program or similar workshops; and throughout 2017 it would have practically doubled.

In short, everything indicates that companies worldwide have become aware of the importance of promoting training programs in which thought, mind and reflection are part of the internal processes of organizations, whether private or public; with a clear objective of profitability or non-profitability.



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