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That’s the spirit: The value of workplace spirituality

Why spirituality should be top of the agenda in our workplace conversations

Encouraging the exploration of workplace spirituality is shown to reap benefits for organisations. We can be too quick to jump to conclusions about such a subject, tossing it away as little more than a fad. Why is it common to treat it with cynicism, and how can we bring it to the forefront of our conversations? 

I read an article  recently that took a novel approach to organisational learning culture in the context of its relationship with workplace spirituality. It suggested the two share strong links. I was initially sceptical. How is an unscientific subject such as spirituality connected with organisational learning?  

On closer inspection , workplace spirituality is a relatively robust and straightforward concept. It refers to the purpose and meaning employees give to their lives and how this connects them to their work community and others around them.  

What is workplace spirituality? 

The article identified four dimensions that comprise workplace spirituality: (i) an inner life (or self-respect), which nourishes and is nourished by (ii) meaningful work that (iii) takes place in the context of how we relate to others in our community and (iv) encourages close alignment between personal values and organisational values. 

Though they are similar, spirituality and religion differ because  religion relates closer to beliefs and rituals , while spirituality is more personal. The two concepts share a sense of desire to search for the sacred or a higher power and connect to  the meaning and purpose of life . 

The importance of workplace spirituality 

Why should we move spirituality from the periphery of the workplace and embrace it as a critical element of modern organisations? Employees who are encouraged to access their spirituality are likely to feel more content with their life. It allows them to maintain balance and control of their domains,  particularly at work . These individual-level changes have a positive effect at the organisational level too. By creating an environment in which committed and satisfied employees can thrive and embrace their spirituality, businesses can make a greater contribution to society and  raise the consciousness of the organisation .  

The positive outcomes of engaging with spirituality at work are clear, so why is it overlooked in most organisations? A lack of focus on spirituality in the workplace has been linked to  higher levels of stress and absenteeism . This may speak to spirituality’s place not just at work but beyond – its absence may be felt in the workplace, but, more importantly, work itself and we as workers lose connection with the world and with purpose when lacking spirituality. 

Talking about spirituality needs to become as natural as the many other conversations we have at work, including those around innovation, well-being and engagement.  

The critical role of leadership 

Research suggests  that supportive leadership is essential to help employees understand their spirituality and undergo a process of self-discovery to reach their potential.  It is argued  that a leader who values spirituality motivates others by creating and developing a shared vision of a desirable future. They own the values and behaviours that enable those working with them to experience a ‘sense of calling’ and purpose. Their work has meaning and makes a difference. This leadership creates an environment that allows employees to bring their whole selves and values into everyday work. 

Workplace spirituality offers organisations great potential, yet the subject remains relatively untapped and warrants further research. Spirituality can develop a thriving workforce environment that leads to positive organisational change. By embracing spirituality in the workplace, we can help employees gain a sense of connectedness and meaning in their work.  

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About the author

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

Jake Young, Research Associate

Jake joined the CIPD in 2018, having completed a master’s degree in Social Science Research Methods at the University of Nottingham. He also holds an undergraduate degree in Criminology and Sociology.

Jake’s research interests concern aspects of equality, diversity and inclusion, such as inequality, gender and identity in the workplace. Jake is currently involved in the creation of a research project examining the effectiveness of organisational recruitment programmes and their relationship with workplace performance.

Jake leads research on the CIPD Good Work Index programme of work, exploring the key dimensions of job quality in the UK. Jake has also written several CIPD evidence reviews on a variety of organisational topics, including employee engagement, employee resilience and digital work and wellbeing.

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Workplace spirituality: Definition, benefits, and top examples to improve wellness in 2024

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Have you ever felt like your job is more than just a paycheck? Perhaps you crave a sense of purpose or connection with your colleagues beyond deadlines and meetings. If so, you're not alone. This yearning for deeper meaning in the workplace is where the concept of workplace spirituality comes in.

Workplace spirituality isn't about religious or spiritual practices, only within the office. Instead, it's a holistic approach that fosters a work environment where employees can connect with their inner selves, find meaning in their work, and feel a sense of community with their colleagues.

It's about acknowledging that employees are more than just cogs in a machine; they're individuals with values, aspirations, and a desire to contribute to something larger than themselves.

This blog post will delve deeper into the concept of workplace spirituality, exploring its core principles, and the potential benefits for both employees and organizations and providing practical examples of how companies can implement practices that promote well-being and a sense of purpose at work.

So, whether you're an employee seeking a more fulfilling work experience or an employer looking to boost employee morale and productivity , read on to discover how workplace spirituality can revolutionize your work life in 2024.

Workplace spirituality definition

Employee meditating above a desk

Workplace spirituality encompasses a multifaceted approach to work that integrates the search for meaning, purpose, and values with professional responsibilities. At its core, it acknowledges that individuals bring their whole selves to work, including their spiritual beliefs and practices, and seeks to create an environment that nurtures these aspects of employees' lives.

This concept recognizes that work is more than just a means to earn a living; it's an opportunity for personal growth and fulfillment. It emphasizes the importance of fostering a sense of community, empathy, and compassion among coworkers, as well as promoting a culture of respect, inclusivity, and ethical behavior.

Moreover, workplace spirituality acknowledges the interconnectedness between our personal lives and organizational goals , aiming to align them in a way that benefits both individuals and the broader community. It encourages practices such as mindfulness, meditation, and reflection to enhance employee well-being and performance .

In essence, workplace spirituality is about creating a work environment where individuals can thrive holistically, integrating their professional goals with their spiritual and personal values.

It's not about imposing specific spiritual values, beliefs or practices on employees but rather creating a supportive context where diverse perspectives are respected, and individuals are encouraged to bring their whole selves to work.

What is the principle of workplace spirituality?

Employers and employees are working together on an idea

The principle of workplace spirituality revolves around the recognition that work is not just a transactional activity but a deeply human experience. At its core lies the belief that individuals seek more than just financial rewards from their jobs—they seek meaning, purpose, and a sense of connection.

One key principle is the integration of personal values and beliefs into the workplace environment. This integration acknowledges that employees bring their whole selves to work, including their spiritual, moral, and ethical convictions.

By using spiritual principles and embracing diversity of thought and perspective, organizations can create a more inclusive and supportive atmosphere.

Another principle is the cultivation of a sense of community and belonging within the workplace. This involves fostering strong interpersonal relationships, promoting empathy and understanding among colleagues, and creating opportunities for collaboration and mutual support.

When employees feel valued and connected to their peers, they are more likely to experience greater job satisfaction and fulfillment .

Furthermore, workplace spirituality emphasizes the importance of aligning organizational goals with individual values and aspirations. This alignment requires leaders to cultivate a shared sense of purpose and vision, ensuring that employees feel motivated and engaged in their work.

By using spiritual leadership and fostering a culture of meaning and fulfillment, organizations can enhance employee morale , productivity, and overall well-being.

Ultimately, the principle of workplace spirituality underscores the idea that work should be a source of meaning, fulfillment, and spiritual growth. By embracing this principle, organizations can create environments where employees feel inspired, valued, and empowered to contribute their best selves to their work.

Importance of workplace spirituality on company culture

Employees are working together effectively in the workplace

Workplace spirituality refers to the acknowledgment and integration of spiritual or human values in the workplace environment. While it may seem like a departure from traditional business practices, workplace spirituality has gained recognition for many benefits and its potential to positively influence company culture and organizational outcomes.

Here are some reasons why it's important:

Enhanced employee well-being

Workplace spirituality fosters an environment where employees feel valued not only for their skills but also as individuals. This can lead to increased job satisfaction , higher morale, and improved overall well-being.

Increased engagement and commitment

When employees feel a sense of purpose and connection to their work beyond just financial gain, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to the organization's goals. This can result in improved employee satisfaction, higher productivity, and lower turnover rates .

Positive organizational culture

Workplace spirituality promotes values such as empathy, compassion, integrity, and trust. When these values are embraced and practiced throughout the organization, it creates a positive culture where employees feel supported, respected, and motivated to perform their best.

Better decision making

Spiritually aligned organizations often encourage reflection, mindfulness, and ethical decision-making processes. This can lead to more thoughtful and principled decision-making at all levels of the organization, ultimately contributing to its long-term success and sustainability.

Conflict resolution and collaboration

Spirituality in the workplace emphasizes qualities such as forgiveness, empathy, and understanding. These qualities can help facilitate conflict resolution and improve collaboration among team members , leading to more effective teamwork and problem-solving.

Attracting and retaining talent

In today's competitive job market, employees are increasingly seeking workplaces that align with their personal values and beliefs. Companies that embrace and cultivate workplace spirituality are more likely to attract and retain top talent who are looking for meaning and fulfillment in their careers.

Customer satisfaction and loyalty

A more positive attitude and workplace culture rooted in spirituality can extend to interactions with customers and clients. Employees who feel fulfilled and valued are more likely to provide excellent customer service , leading to increased satisfaction and loyalty among customers.

How are workplace spirituality and organizational performance linked to each other?

Employers are discussing the recent workplace metrics

Workplace spirituality and organizational performance are intricately linked, each influencing the other in a dynamic interplay that can significantly impact a company's success. Workplace spirituality refers to a sense of purpose, meaning, and interconnectedness in the workplace, transcending mere material or transactional concerns.

It involves fostering a supportive and values-driven environment where employees feel a sense of belonging and fulfillment .

When employees feel spiritually connected to their work, they are more engaged, motivated, and committed. This heightened sense of purpose often leads to greater job satisfaction and well-being, reducing turnover rates and enhancing employee retention.

Furthermore, employees who find meaning in their work are more likely to exhibit discretionary effort, going above and beyond their basic job responsibilities to contribute to the organization's goals.

This enhanced commitment and engagement among employees translate into tangible benefits for organizational performance. Companies with a strong emphasis on workplace spirituality tend to experience higher levels of productivity, innovation, and creativity.

Employees are more collaborative, willing to share ideas, and open to experimentation, leading to improved problem-solving and decision-making processes. Moreover, a spiritually nourishing work environment fosters a culture of trust, transparency, and empathy, which are vital for effective teamwork and communication.

The alignment of individual and organizational values also influences organizational performance. When employees feel that their personal values resonate with those of the organization, they are more likely to exhibit behaviors that contribute to its success.

This alignment fosters a sense of collective purpose and direction, enhancing organizational cohesion and resilience in the face of challenges. Additionally, workplace spirituality can have a positive impact on customer and employee satisfaction and loyalty, as employees who feel fulfilled and valued are more likely to deliver exceptional service and build meaningful relationships with clients.

What are the characteristics of a spiritual workplace?

A spiritual workplace is characterized by a nurturing environment that values holistic well-being and fosters a sense of purpose and connection among its employees. Here are the key characteristics of spiritual workplaces:

Sense of purpose

Employees in a spiritual workplace feel connected to a higher purpose beyond profit margins or personal gain. There's a shared understanding of how their work contributes to something meaningful and impactful.

Respect and empathy

Respect for each individual's beliefs, values, and experiences is paramount. Empathy is cultivated, allowing for open communication, understanding, and support among colleagues.

Mindfulness and presence

Mindfulness practices are encouraged, promoting present-moment awareness and the cultivation of a calm, focused mindset. This may include meditation sessions, mindfulness training, or simply fostering and practicing self-awareness in an environment conducive to being fully present.

Ethical and compassionate leadership

Leaders exemplify ethical behavior and lead with compassion, considering the well-being of their employees as well as the broader community. They prioritize fairness, integrity, and empathy in their decision-making.

Work-life balance

The organization values the holistic well-being of its employees, recognizing the importance of maintaining a healthy balance between work and personal life . Flexible schedules, remote work options, and support for personal development are commonly offered.

Community and connection

A sense of belonging and community is fostered within the workplace. Employees feel connected to each other beyond their professional roles, often through team-building activities, shared values, and opportunities for collaboration.

Celebration of diversity

Diversity and inclusion are celebrated, with an understanding that each individual brings unique perspectives and strengths to the table. Differences are embraced and leveraged to foster creativity, innovation, and personal growth

What is the impact of workplace spirituality on employee wellness: Top 7 benefits

Employee running up on a upward trend

Workplace spirituality can have a profound impact on employee wellness, leading to numerous benefits that contribute to both personal and organizational success. Here are the top seven benefits:

1. Reduced stress and burnout

Workplace spirituality often involves practices such as mindfulness, meditation, and promoting self-awareness and a sense of purpose. These practices can help employees manage stress more effectively, leading to reduced levels of burnout and improved overall well-being.

2. Increased job satisfaction

When employees feel connected to a higher purpose and see meaning in their work, they are more likely to experience higher levels of job satisfaction . This satisfaction stems from feeling that meaningful work and contributions align with their values and beliefs, leading to a greater sense of fulfillment.

3. Enhanced emotional resilience

Spiritually oriented workplaces often foster a culture of empathy, compassion, and support. Employees feel more emotionally supported and connected to their colleagues, which can enhance their resilience in the face of challenges and setbacks.

4. Improved mental health

Workplace spirituality encourages employees to prioritize their mental and spiritual health and well-being . By promoting practices that cultivate mindfulness and emotional intelligence, such as meditation and self-reflection, employees can better manage their mental health and experience greater psychological resilience.

5. Better work-life balance

Organizations that embrace workplace spirituality often prioritize work-life balance and holistic well-being. This may include offering flexible work arrangements, promoting time off for self-care, and encouraging employees to set boundaries between work and personal life, leading to improved overall balance and satisfaction.

6. Enhanced interpersonal relationships

Spiritually oriented workplaces emphasize qualities such as empathy, compassion, and respect for others. As a result, employees tend to have stronger interpersonal relationships, both with their colleagues and with clients or customers. This fosters a positive and productive work environment built on trust, collaboration, and mutual support.

7. Higher levels of engagement and productivity

When employees feel a sense of purpose and connection to their work, they are more engaged and motivated to perform at their best. This increased engagement leads to higher levels of productivity, creativity, and innovation, ultimately benefiting the organization as a whole.

17 Workplace spirituality questionnaire to ask your employees in 2024

Employers are discussing questions to ask employees

Here are 17 questions you can include in a workplace spirituality questionnaire to gather insights from your employees:

  • Do you feel that the organization's mission and values align with your personal beliefs and principles?
  • How important is it to you to feel a sense of purpose in your work?
  • Do you feel supported in integrating your personal values and spirituality into your work life?
  • To what extent do you feel connected to your colleagues on a personal and spiritual level?
  • How often do you engage in mindfulness or meditation practices to manage stress and enhance focus at work?
  • Do you believe that practicing empathy and compassion towards colleagues positively impacts workplace relationships and teamwork?
  • How often do you participate in activities or discussions related to spirituality or personal growth in the workplace?
  • Do you feel that your spiritual and emotional well-being is valued and supported by your supervisors and peers?
  • To what extent does the organization promote a culture of work-life balance and holistic well-being?
  • How comfortable are you expressing your spiritual beliefs or practices in the workplace?
  • Do you believe that a sense of community and belonging is fostered within the organization?
  • Are you encouraged to take time for self-reflection and personal development during work hours?
  • How effective do you find the organization's communication and support systems in addressing your spiritual or emotional needs?
  • Do you feel that the organization's leadership exemplifies ethical behavior and values-based decision-making?
  • How do you perceive the impact of workplace spirituality on your overall job satisfaction and motivation?
  • Do you believe that workplace spirituality positively influences your ability to cope with challenges and setbacks?
  • What suggestions do you have for further integrating spirituality and holistic well-being into the workplace culture?

Workplace spirituality encompasses practices and initiatives that prioritize the holistic well-being of employees, foster a sense of purpose and connection, and contribute to a positive organizational culture.

By integrating spirituality into the workplace, organizations can enhance employee wellness, engagement, and satisfaction, leading to increased productivity, innovation, and success.

Embracing and incorporating workplace spirituality not only benefits individual employees but also strengthens the overall resilience and effectiveness of the organization in a rapidly evolving world.

Santhosh

Santhosh is a Sr. Content Marketer with 2+ years of experience. He loves to travel solo (though he doesn’t label them as vacations, they are) to explore, meet people, and learn new stories.

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Workplace Spirituality: A Review of Approaches to Conceptualization and

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Workplace Spirituality is a contextualized phenomenon that seeks to identify and build meaning, connectedness, and the sense of transcendence at the workplace. In this regard, this paper analyzes the different approaches of researchers to pin down the concept of workplace spirituality. Further, it probes into the diverse ways in which various research constructs of workplace spirituality have been operationalized. In this connection, the discussion is made about levels of analysis of the constructs of workplace spirituality. The concept of workplace spirituality is a contextualized phenomenon of spirituality in general, even as religion is distinguished from spirituality. The originality of this paper lies in the comparative study that it makes of the constructs of workplace spirituality conceptualized and operationalized by prior research at individual, group, and organizational levels.

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This note is aimed at presenting an overview of the workplace spirituality research in last four decades. First it presents the distinction of religion and spirituality noticeable in the workplace spirituality literature. Next, it summarizes the themes in the scholarship of the field of workplace spirituality. Then it contains the empirical studies about the impact of workplace spirituality. The note is concluded with the importance of workplace spirituality research in current times and the plausible directions in future of the research in this field.

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Workplace spirituality has been researched for a decade and while there have been papers studying the same, it is still not adequately applied in real-time in the workplace. This is due to the major constraint of lack of systems approach to the entire gamut of the input, throughput and output of the workplace spirituality systems and processes. There is also a lot of confusion surrounding the definition and the meaning of the concept of workplace spirituality. This paper attempts to fill this gap in research by putting together the various dimensions of workplace spirituality. It addresses the various implications for organizations and relates it to motives beyond the bottom line for managers and organizations at large. This paper is concluded with a model which may be empirically tested in further studies. The major contribution of this paper is in the form of compiling all major research studies in the form of an empirically testable model.

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Workplace spirituality is of interest to the organizational scientists since many years. But substantial research on workplace spirituality is conceptual in nature. Hence, theories developed through these conceptual papers can be misleading if they are not backed by empirical research. The aim of this research paper was to embark on a qualitative empirical research to explore how spirituality is enacted at workplace; how it can enhance the experience of employees; and what are the factors which foster workplace spirituality. The ontological stance is subjective and epistemological stanceis interpretivist. Data was collected though semi structured narrative interviews from 25 employees working in the head office of a not-for-profit organization. Finding shows that spirituality is enactedin the emerging themes of strong leadership, strong organizational culture, value driven nature of work and humanism. It contributes theoretically by empirically exploring factors like trust and respe...

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Workplace spirituality is a construct widely discussed over the past few decades and it is a much-disputed inquiry field which is gaining the interest of practitioners and scholars. Some clarifications regarding concepts and definitions are necessary in order to structure and direct the current debate. The aim of this conceptual article is to gain a better understanding regarding the direction in which this field of study is progressing and to put the question on the table namely, whether workplace spirituality is only a new tool to be used in leadership development or is it a trend to be taken seriously? The results showed that this field has potential to further development. This article can be used as foundation for future studies within the knowledge area of practical theology.

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Today's business environment is becoming so challenging and pressurized that there arises a need to create a spiritual workplace in the organisation. Spirituality is " our inner consciousness " (Guillory, 2000). This paper focuses on the core concept of spirituality and its growing role for organisational success. This is a conceptual study and based on observations and secondary sources of data like journals, books, web-sites, newspaper articles. The author has devised a model representing the role of spirituality in organisational success. The devised model establishes a linkage between spirituality at workplace with individual and group level benefits that influences the employees' productivity and organisational performance. Through this study growing role of spirituality at workplace has been highlighted so that management can frame strategies accordingly.

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Please note you do not have access to teaching notes, spirituality in the workplace: a systematic review.

Management Decision

ISSN : 0025-1747

Article publication date: 21 March 2022

Issue publication date: 5 April 2022

The purpose of this study is to conduct a systematic review of the extant literature of workplace spirituality (WPS) in a manner that helps us trace its emergence in management practices in the past twelve years and to identify the gaps to be addressed by researchers in near future.

Design/methodology/approach

A two-step screening process was followed to extract the papers from various databases. The paper reviews one hundred fifty-nine conceptual and empirical articles published in more than fifty journals from 2010 to 2021. Leading databases like EBSCO, Scopus and ProQuest were extensively searched. The papers were analysed and grouped to arrive at the themes and classification criteria.

Despite numerous studies and extensive research in the past decade, the construct of WPS lacks a conclusive definition and has overlapping dimensions. It is a multidimensional concept having personal, psychological and social aspects. It is a dominant field in organisational behaviour domain.

Research limitations/implications

The review explains the multidisciplinary nature of WPS, having roots in organisational behaviour, psychology and theology. Further, the paper provides a clear picture of the present state of literature and enumerates future research avenues which will enable the researchers to further expand the area of WPS.

Practical implications

The review highlights multiple positive attitudinal outcomes that managers can attain through WPS-related initiatives. Various techniques like prayer breaks, meditation and yoga can be used by the managers for spiritual incorporation process.

Originality/value

This study acquires significance, for, unlike previous studies, it does not propose that inclusion of WPS will always be gainful, rather it also broaches its potential harm, if incorporated sans due caution. Considering the complexity of spiritual beliefs, it will enable managers to weigh the pros-cons of such inclusion. The research gaps identified in the review will help future researchers in furthering the field of WPS.

  • Spirituality
  • Workplace spirituality
  • Critical workplace spirituality

Singh, R.K. and Singh, S. (2022), "Spirituality in the workplace: a systematic review", Management Decision , Vol. 60 No. 5, pp. 1296-1325. https://doi.org/10.1108/MD-11-2020-1466

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Spirituality in the Workplace Environment Research Paper

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Spirituality can be described as a state of being in connection with one’s inner self and a higher power, which gives individuals the ability to find meaning and purpose in their lives. It is an invaluable pursuit that provides people with spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental nourishment (Reddy). Despite its numerous benefits, spirituality can present several challenges when practiced in the workplace because of the numerous approaches that people have about its importance. Spirituality is an important practice that can enhance values such as service and compassion. What are some of the challenges that appear when spirituality is shown in a workplace environment?

Spirituality can cause strife in the workplace because of differences in opinion among employees. As mentioned earlier, people approach spirituality differently about their practice and importance in life (Mitroff and Denton). Some people believe that spirituality is important and should be practiced in the workplace while others believe it is not important and should be avoided in the workplace. Its repulsiveness is primarily caused by its association with religion. Many people consider spirituality as one of the many aspects of religion, and therefore, introducing it at the workplace is considered inappropriate (Reddy). Religions have different approaches to spirituality. In that regard, ideological differences could result in clashes between people at the workplace because each would consider their religion’s approach the best. Each individual would aim to promote their religious beliefs and practices.

One of the potential effects of ideological differences in the development of conflicts between employees, which would hinder effective teamwork and cooperation. The proliferation of spiritual beliefs and practices in a work environment might influence how people look at each other (Mitroff and Denton). For example, people who do not believe in spirituality might develop negative feelings toward the people who practice it at work. Many people believe that spirituality should be dealt with outside work because it is a personal pursuit that should be conducted individually. Therefore, practicing it at work is a way of offending those who do not embrace practices such as prayer and meditation. The development of negative attitudes toward some employees hinders cooperation and renders teamwork ineffective.

Spirituality is an intangible concept that allows individuals to find meaning and purpose in life. However, this intangible nature creates difficulty in the assimilation and internalization of the rituals and practices associated with it (Mitroff and Denton). In that regard, many people perceive it as an attempt to convert them to certain religions that advocate for specific practices that are associated with spirituality. This originates from the belief that spirituality and religion are similar concepts. Certain organizations that promote spirituality create unnecessary rifts because they fail to give employees the freedom to pursue spirituality individually (Mitroff and Denton). As a result, employees may feel that the promotion of spirituality in the workplace is an intrusion into their personal lives because spirituality is an individual experience and pursuit.

Workplace spirituality is an invaluable concept that can have immense physical, emotional, and mental benefits if implemented properly. However, it can also present several challenges because of people’s varying opinions and differences in ideologies. People might feel disrespected by the overt practice of spirituality at the workplace and as a result, develop negative attitudes toward others. This could affect their relationships and render teamwork ineffective.

Works Cited

Mitroff, Ian I., and Elizabeth Denton. “A Study of Spirituality in the Workplace.” MITSloan Management Review , 1999, Web.

Reddy, Chitra. “Spirituality in the workplace: Pros and Cons.” Wisestep , Web.

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IvyPanda. (2020, September 5). Spirituality in the Workplace Environment. https://ivypanda.com/essays/spirituality-in-the-workplace-environment/

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1. IvyPanda . "Spirituality in the Workplace Environment." September 5, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/spirituality-in-the-workplace-environment/.

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IvyPanda . "Spirituality in the Workplace Environment." September 5, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/spirituality-in-the-workplace-environment/.

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

Business of Well-being

The role of spirituality in employee wellbeing and workplace culture.

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

In today's fast-paced world, employee wellbeing and workplace culture have become increasingly important as organizations recognize the need to support the holistic needs of their employees. One often overlooked aspect of employee wellbeing is spirituality. Spirituality, as a concept, transcends religious affiliations and beliefs and can be a powerful tool in fostering a positive and inclusive workplace environment. In this article, we will explore the role of spirituality in employee wellbeing and workplace culture, and how organizations can effectively incorporate it into their wellness initiatives.

  • Understanding Spirituality in the Workplace

Spirituality can be broadly defined as a sense of connection to something greater than oneself, a pursuit of meaning, and a quest for wholeness. It is not limited to religious beliefs, but rather encompasses a range of practices and experiences that promote inner peace, self-awareness, and personal growth.

In the context of the workplace, spirituality refers to an organization's efforts to foster an environment that supports employees' spiritual needs and encourages their personal growth. This can be achieved through various means, such as promoting mindfulness, offering opportunities for reflection, and facilitating open and honest communication.

  • The Science Behind Spirituality and Employee Wellbeing

Numerous studies have examined the impact of spirituality on employee wellbeing, revealing the benefits of incorporating spiritual practices and perspectives in the workplace. For example, research has shown that spiritual wellbeing is positively correlated with psychological wellbeing, reduced stress, and enhanced job satisfaction.

One study found that employees who engage in regular spiritual practices, such as meditation or prayer, report better physical and mental health, as well as greater work engagement and satisfaction. Another study discovered that organizations that foster a spiritual culture have lower levels of employee burnout, higher levels of commitment, and improved overall performance.

These findings underline the significance of spirituality in supporting employee wellbeing and contributing to a positive workplace culture.

  • The Benefits of Spiritual Wellbeing for Employees

Spiritual wellbeing can have numerous positive effects on employees, which in turn can contribute to the overall success of an organization. Some of the benefits of fostering spirituality in the workplace include:

A. Enhanced mental health: Spiritual practices like meditation and mindfulness can help employees manage stress, reduce anxiety, and improve their overall mental wellbeing.

B. Greater job satisfaction: Employees who feel connected to their work and find meaning in their tasks are more likely to be satisfied with their jobs, leading to higher retention rates and improved productivity.

C. Improved physical health: Research has shown that spiritual wellbeing can have a positive impact on physical health, with benefits such as lower blood pressure, improved immune function, and reduced pain perception.

D. Increased creativity: A spiritual approach to work can help employees tap into their creative potential, leading to innovative ideas and solutions.

E. Enhanced interpersonal relationships: Spiritual practices often promote empathy and compassion, which can improve communication and collaboration among team members.

  • Building a Spiritual Workplace Culture

Organizations can take several steps to create a workplace culture that values and supports spirituality:

A. Encourage mindfulness: Implement mindfulness programs, such as meditation sessions or workshops, to help employees stay present and focused.

B. Foster a sense of purpose: Help employees find meaning in their work by connecting their roles to the company's overall mission and vision.

C. Provide opportunities for personal growth: Offer workshops or resources on topics such as emotional intelligence, stress management, and self-care.

D. Create spaces for reflection: Designate quiet spaces where employees can take breaks, meditate, or engage in other reflective practices.

E. Promote open communication: Encourage employees to express their thoughts and feelings, and create a culture of empathy and understanding.

F. Celebrate diversity: Organize events or workshops that showcase different spiritual practices and beliefs, fostering a culture of inclusivity and appreciation for diverse perspectives.

G. Support employee-led initiatives: Encourage and support employee-led groups or clubs focused on spiritual practices, ensuring that they are inclusive and open to all interested individuals.

  • Challenges and Considerations

While implementing spirituality in the workplace can have numerous benefits, it is crucial to be mindful of potential challenges and considerations:

A. Respect diverse beliefs: Acknowledge and respect the diverse beliefs and practices of your employees, and ensure that your spiritual initiatives are inclusive and non-discriminatory.

B. Maintain boundaries: Be sensitive to the need for boundaries between personal and professional lives, and avoid imposing spiritual practices on employees.

C. Balance spirituality with other aspects of wellbeing: While spirituality is essential, remember to address other aspects of employee wellbeing, such as physical health and work-life balance.

D. Monitor the impact: Regularly assess the impact of your spiritual initiatives on employee wellbeing and workplace culture, and make adjustments as needed to ensure their continued effectiveness.

Fostering spirituality in the workplace can have profound impacts on employee wellbeing and workplace culture. As organizations strive to create more inclusive and supportive environments, it is crucial to consider the role of spirituality in promoting the holistic wellbeing of employees.

If your organization is looking to enhance employee wellbeing by incorporating spiritual elements, Global Healthcare Resources is here to help. As experts in wellness consulting, we can provide the guidance and resources you need to create a holistic and inclusive workplace environment that supports the spiritual needs of your employees. To learn more about our services and how we can assist you in this journey, visit our wellness consulting page at https://www.globalhealthcareresources.com/wellnessconsulting . Together, let's create a workplace that nurtures the whole person – mind, body, and spirit – and unlocks the full potential of your employees.

Top Wellness Leader, Jesse Gavin Shares Deep Insights into Corporate Wellness Transformation for Leaders

Changing the narrative in corporate wellness, an interview with ccws graduate, renee fortuna, human connection is key to a thriving workplace - interview with shelly bell, well-being means different things to everyone - says jessica domann, well-being programs are not a one-size-fits-all solution - csilla lorincz, ccws graduate, featured reading, “they dumped us like trash:” creating the worst corporate culture like better.com, how fertility benefits can support your diversity & inclusion efforts, global healthcare accreditation (gha) launches gha for business and issues organizational resiliency guidelines amidst omicron and emerging variants.

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A Study of Spirituality in the Workplace

  • Workplace, Teams, & Culture
  • Organizational Behavior

In this empirical study of spirituality in the workplace, 1 we report on our results from interviews with senior executives and from questionnaires sent to HR executives and managers. 2 In general, the participants differentiated strongly between religion and spirituality. They viewed religion as a highly inappropriate form of expression and topic in the workplace. They saw spirituality, on the other hand, as a highly appropriate subject for discussion. This does not mean that they had no fears, reservations, or ambivalence with regard to the potential abuse of spirituality. Nonetheless, they still felt it was essential.

They defined “spirituality” as “the basic feeling of being connected with one’s complete self, others, and the entire universe.” If a single word best captures the meaning of spirituality and the vital role that it plays in people’s lives, that word is “interconnectedness.” Those associated with organizations they perceived as “more spiritual” also saw their organizations as “more profitable.” They reported that they were able to bring more of their “complete selves” to work. They could deploy more of their full creativity, emotions, and intelligence; in short, organizations viewed as more spiritual get more from their participants, and vice versa.

People are hungry for ways in which to practice spirituality in the workplace without offending their coworkers or causing acrimony. They believe strongly that unless organizations learn how to harness the “whole person” and the immense spiritual energy that is at the core of everyone, they will not be able to produce world-class products and services.

In recent years, a large amount of mostly popular literature on spirituality has grown steadily, 3 a significant portion of which deals with spirituality in the work-place 4 and the benefits of such workplaces. In spite of or perhaps because of this literature, there have been, until now, no serious empirical studies of what managers and executives believe and feel about spirituality or assessments of its purported benefits. If spirituality is a fundamental, important human experience, why has it not received serious attention and systematic treatment? 5 Some reasons for this neglect are:

  • Spirituality is generally believed to be a phenomenon that is too soft, too nebulous, and too ill-formed for serious academic study. It is difficult to define, thereby rendering it nearly impossible to examine.

About the Authors

Ian I. Mitroff is the Harold Quinton Distinguished Professor of Business Policy, Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California.Elizabeth A. Denton is an organizational consultant.

1. See I.I. Mitroff and E. Denton, A Spiritual Audit of Corporate America (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999), in press.

3. See, for instance, J. Hillman, The Soul's Code: In Search of Character and Calling (New York: Random House, 1996);

T. Moore, Care of the Soul: A Guide for Cultivating Depth and Sacredness in Everyday Life (New York: HarperPerennial, 1994; and

T. Moore, ed., The Education of the Heart: Reading and Sources for Care of the Soul, Soul Mates, and The Re-enchantment of Everyday Life (New York: HarperCollins, 1996).

4. See L. Bolman and T.E. Deal, Leading with Soul: An Uncommon Journey of Spirit (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1995);

A. Briskin, The Stirring of Soul in the Workplace (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1996);

T. Chappell, The Soul of a Business: Managing for Profit and the Common Good (New York: Bantam Books, 1994);

J.A. Conger et al., Spirit at Work: Discovering the Spirituality in Leadership (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1994);

B. Cohen and J. Greenfield, Ben & Jerry's Double-Dip: Lead with Your Values and Make Money, Too (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1997);

B. DeFoore and J. Ronesch, Rediscovering the Soul of Business: A Renaissance of Values (San Francisco: NewLeaders Press, 1995);

M. Novak, Business as a Calling: Work and the Examined Life (New York: Free Press, 1996); and

J.K. Salkin, Being God's Partner: How to Find the Hidden Link Between Spirituality and Your Work (Woodstock, Vermont: Jewish Lights Publishing, 1994).

5. See W. James, The Varieties of Religious Experience (New York: Collier Books, 1961).

6. See Conger et al. (1994).

7. See Mitroff and Denton (in press).

8. P.B. Vail, Spirited Leading and Learning (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1998).

9. A.H. Maslow, Motivation and Personality (New York: HarperCollins, 1954).

10. It is claimed that such systematic links exist between the actual profitability of organizations and their spiritual beliefs; however, it is probably too early to say at this point that such linkages are definitive. See:

D. Macic, Managing with the Wisdom of Love: Uncovering Virtue in People and Organizations (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1997).

11. N. Mjagkij and M. Spratt, Men and Women Adrift: The YMCA and the YWCA in the City (New York: New York University Press, 1997); and

Chappell (1994).

12. Cohen and Greenfield (1997), p. 30.

13. See, for example:

Chappell (1994); and

Cohen and Greenfield (1997).

14. K. Wilber, A Brief History of Everything (Boston: Shambhala, 1996).

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Spirituality in the Workplace: What Are Its Benefits?

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

November 16, 2017 By Rebecca Davis Leave a Comment

Spirituality in the workplace brings many benefits into the company. In fact, the role of spirituality in the workplace creates a positive, ripple-like effect. Specifically, the benefits of workplace spirituality start with the employees. Then, they ripple out and manifest in increased company performance. Here are a few other reasons why spirituality needs to be practiced at work.

Spirituality in the Workplace: Why It’s Needed

1. purposeful work.

Employees want to find purpose in their jobs. It simply isn’t enough to be paid to work. Instead, they have to find meaning in what they do as well.

The idea of work is no longer separate from the individual. Now, a person’s work is an extension of the individual. Therefore, the job must enhance both the personal and professional aspects of the person.

2. Spiritual Values

How significant your individual spirituality has impact toward workplace spirituality? #spiritualquotient pic.twitter.com/LqdHmuVkis — IPMI_Campus (@IPMI_Campus) July 20, 2017

Integrity, honesty, confidence, and self-discipline are just some of the values that express spirituality. In addition, these are also key attributes for great work performance. After all, these characteristics make for a well-rounded person. Furthermore, both clients and employees prefer to surround themselves with people they both trust and respect.

3. Happier Employees

Happier Employees | Spirituality in the Workplace: What Are Its Benefits?

Employees become happier when they don’t have internal struggles. These struggles manifest in different ways. Some struggle with the many stresses of their job. Others may have difficulty balancing their professional and social lives.

Spirituality in the workplace may help solve these problems. Spirituality can help identify an individual’s priorities and help one remain grateful. It’s all about identifying the root cause of the problem and making changes as needed.

4. Employee Priority

Employee Priority | Spirituality in the Workplace: What Are Its Benefits?

Most companies place more importance on their clients and their profits. This causes them to turn a blind eye to their own company’s internal struggles.

Employees are one of the assets of a company. In fact, they’re one of the most crucial assets, as employees are the base of the corporation. They are the ones responsible for the day to day activities, and they take care of the nitty-gritty details. That’s a lot of pressure and responsibility.

However, spirituality leads employees to feel appreciated, and is therefore one of the ways a company can take care of its employees.

5. Improved Performance

Improved Performance | Spirituality in the Workplace: What Are Its Benefits?

Employees perform better when workplace spirituality is in place. Happier employees can churn out more meaningful work. They’re able to put their heart and hard work into the presentations and reports they make. They’re also able to work more efficiently. This is especially true since there isn’t anything emotionally holding them down.

In addition to these benefits, employees are also able to work faster on their tasks when spirituality is present in the workplace. This leads to an overall improved performance for the company itself. As a result, delays are minimized and production is increased.

Want to know how to practice spirituality in the workplace? Press play on the video below for a few practical tips:

Ultimately, spirituality in the workplace does a lot of good. This holds true for both the company and its employees. Additionally, it may even answer a work place’s productivity problems. Increased spirituality may bridge the gap many companies fail to acknowledge.

Know other tips on how to practice spirituality in the workplace? Share them with us! Leave a comment below!

Up Next: What is Spirituality and What Can It Mean for You?

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Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace: Emerging Research and Practice

  • First Online: 01 January 2012

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write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

  • Judi Neal 2  

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This chapter is an introduction to and an overview of the Handbook for Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace . It provides a brief description of the spiritual context out of which the faith and spirituality in the workplace movement has emerged. The evolution of the history of management is reviewed from Taylor (Principles of scientific management, Harper, NY, 1911) to the current emergence of “Management, Spirituality and Religion” field of study. Next is a description of the design of this book, and then a list of key questions being addressed by the field are listed. The chapter concludes with a summary of the seven parts of the Handbook .

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write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

Spirituality: Definition, Religion and Ethics

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

Spirituality’s Relationship with Ethics and Religion and Its Role in the Workplace

write an essay on the importance of spirituality at workplace

Throughout this chapter, the phrase “faith and spiritual” is used to be as inclusive as possible of all religious traditions as well as of those who see themselves as “spiritual but not religious,” agnostic, or atheistic. See Chap. 3 in this Handbook , “Spirituality and Religion, Seeking a juxtaposition that supports research in the field of faith and spirituality at work” for an in-depth discussion on key terminology in the field and the move toward greater integration.

See Chap. 3 , “The Virtues of Spirituality and Project Management,” in Judi Neal and Alan Harpham, 2012 , The Spirit of Project Management , London: Gower, provides an integrative framework of these three authors’ work on virtues in the workplace.

See http://tfsw.uark.edu/conference.asp for information on our annual conferences that bring together academics, students, business leaders, and people from all different faith and spiritual traditions.

See Chap. 38 , “Spiritual Leadership and Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace” by Louis W. (Jody) Fry in this volume, for a reflective essay on the field and his view of what needs to be addressed in the future.

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Neal, J. (2013). Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace: Emerging Research and Practice. In: Neal, J. (eds) Handbook of Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-5233-1_1

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    In this empirical study of spirituality in the workplace, 1 we report on our results from interviews with senior executives and from questionnaires sent to HR executives and managers. 2 In general, the participants differentiated strongly between religion and spirituality. They viewed religion as a highly inappropriate form of expression and ...

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    Spirituality is often considered as an important driver of the overall well-being of an individual. Given the significance of spirituality in one's life, organizations are increasingly making efforts to ensure that employees use spirituality to engage themselves physically, emotionally, and cognitively in their work.

  14. Impact of Workplace Spirituality on Employee Well-Being: The Mediating

    Pragya Gupta is Assistant Professor of Management at Jaipuria Institute of Management in Noida. Her area of research interest is workplace spirituality, employee well-being, employee engagement, work-life balance and burnout. She also has close to 14 years of prior experience in working with corporate HRs of reputed multinational companies in Delhi-NCR.

  15. Spirituality at the Workplace

    Spirituality in the workplace is a multidimensional concept, involving both spirituality and religion. Many refer to the phenomenon as Faith at Work, where the term faith encompasses conceptions of both religion and spirituality, as well as atheism and agnosticism, as they too, represent a Weltanschauung, i.e., a way of perceiving reality and filtering meaning and purpose.

  16. Workplace Spirituality: Themes, Impact and Research Directions

    The note concludes with the importance of workplace spirituality research in current times and future research directions in this field. Get full access to this article. View all access and purchase options for this article. Get Access. References. Altaf, A., & Awan, M. A. (2011). Moderating affect of workplace spirituality on the relationship ...

  17. Overview of Workplace Spirituality Research

    There are five major sections of this chapter: (1) historical background and trends, (2) research methodologies, (3) organizational exemplars of workplace spirituality, (4) spiritual practices in the corporate sector, (5) outcomes research, and (6) recommendations for future research in the workplace spirituality domain.

  18. Spirituality in the Workplace: What Are Its Benefits?

    5. Improved Performance. Employees perform better when workplace spirituality is in place. Happier employees can churn out more meaningful work. They're able to put their heart and hard work into the presentations and reports they make. They're also able to work more efficiently.

  19. PDF Organizational Culture and Spirituality Workplace: Empirical Study of

    The Spirituality Workplace approach becomes a strategy for organizations in the management of employees, where the spirituality workplace can be viewed from two levels, namely; individual level and organizational level [4]. Individual level, refers to the set of individual values that drive the transcendent

  20. PDF Spirituality in the Workplace

    Imagination—creation of a goal, condition, or an objective, e.g., inclusion. Focus—creation of a visual picture of this vision in form, e.g., people compatibly working together. Belief—experience of the vision already having occurred, e.g., a feeling of contentment and accomplishment.

  21. Spirituality and Employee Engagement at Work

    Abstract. Spirituality is often considered as an important driver of the overall well-being of an individual. Given the significance of spirituality in one's life, organizations are increasingly making efforts to ensure that employees use spirituality to engage themselves physically, emotionally, and cognitively in their work.

  22. Essay on Spirituality

    Meaning of Spirituality. Spirituality is the feeling of being connected to something bigger than ourselves. It's a personal experience that can be expressed in many different ways. For some people, spirituality means having a relationship with God or a higher power. For others, it means feeling a deep connection to nature or to the universe.

  23. Faith and Spirituality in the Workplace: Emerging Research ...

    Pat Sullivan, the author of Chap. 2, "EEOC Best Practices Support Best Practices for Spirit and Religion at Work," has been writing about spirituality in the workplace since the 1990s and has particular insight into the field of law, having worked in law firms for many years. It is important for anyone in this field, whether they are a ...