At PepTalk we always appreciate a good statistic but this one blew our little socks off. Studies have shown that on average we spend 47% of our time thinking about or on multiple things while trying to focus on another. This even has a fancy name, Attention Deficit Trait and in our hyper connected, always on world it is getting worse. In reality this means employees are potentially thinking about something other than the task at hand nearly half of the time they are at work. This naturally leads to feelings of stress, anxiety and a loss of control as employees constantly feel unable to deal with the task at hand.
Distractions in the workplace can come in many forms from mobile phones use to always on e-mails, noisy co-workers in an open plan office to personal issues. It is little surprise that 67% of business leaders describe their minds as cluttered. This feeling of a loss of control not only impacts on the employee's performance at work but also has a significant impact on the health and wellness of employees and the research is already there to show the impact poor employee wellbeing can have on the success of your organisation.
For years, high performance sportspeople such as Kobe Bryant have extolled the virtues of training their mind and how it can greatly impact upon how they deal with distractions on the court but also great help with his own personal wellbeing. He has stated that "I normally do my mindfulness exercises in the morning. It's the first thing I do when I get up. I find that to be the best way to start the day. It gets me in balance before the busyness and hecticness of the day kicks off." In preparing for the recent Olympics Team GB used meditation and mindfulness apps. Tom Daley said it helped to focus his breathing, saying: 'It's just about being really present in a particular moment. Every morning I do 10 minutes of mindfulness where I do meditation and I use that in competition and every-day life.
So these lessons from sport have begun to permeate down into the business world and the health and wellbeing of employees has become a much more broad concept and is increasingly been seen as a tool to not only drive significant health benefits but also tangible business benefits in terms of performance, creativity and focus. For companies seeking to understand how to increase productivity to remain ahead of the competition and drive progressive employee retention strategies, it has become about the survival of the focused
In the USA for example, the Dow Chemical company have shown their online mindfulness intervention seems to be both practical and effective in decreasing employee stress, while improving resilience, vigour, and work engagement, thereby enhancing overall employee well-being. Within the legal world, Herbert Smith Freehills have had mindfulness as a core theme in their firm for a number of years and have seen impressive results with a 12% increase in employee focus, a 10% increase in employee performance and a uplift in workplace productivity.
Before you begin developing out corporate wellbeing programmes for 2019, reflect on your employees, are they getting distracted easily, have you any sense of how much time is being wasted each week through loss of focus. Is there signs of a loss of control, disengagement and a frenetic environment. A focused mindfulness programme with clear business goals could be a perfect antidote and a game changing innovation for the growth of your company in 2019.
We are super interested to hear how you your organisation manages distractions? Is it a challenge in your organisation? What other ides to you have that you could share with the community? Please leave your ideas in the comments section below.
CEO @ PepTalk
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At PepTalk, we work with companies to develop wellbeing and mindfulness programmes that are designed to develop more engaged, attentive and focused employees. To find out more about this area and our wider PepTalk offering book a demonstration at www.peptalk.ie or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Shout out to the super talented @JamesCurran for his giphs