Addressing unintended ethical challenges of workplace mindfulness

a four-stage mindfulness development model

Jane X. J. Qiu, David Rooney

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    8 Citations (Scopus)


    This study focuses on mindfulness programs in the corporate world, which are receiving increasing attention from business practitioners and organizational scholars. The workplace mindfulness literature is rapidly evolving, but most studies are oriented toward demonstrating the positive impacts of mindfulness as a state of mind. This study adopts a critical perspective to evaluate workplace mindfulness practice as a developmental process, with a focus on its potential risks that have ethical implications and are currently neglected by both researchers and practitioners. We draw from a Buddhist perspective that understands mindfulness training as an ethics-based, longitudinal, and holistic path. To this end, we develop a four-stage model to illustrate a potential developmental process for participants in workplace mindfulness programs. This model comprises four stages of preliminary concentration, deep concentration, self-transcendence, and reengagement, each of which has its own underlying characteristics and impacts on individual participants and organizations.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)715–730
    Number of pages16
    JournalJournal of Business Ethics
    Issue number3
    Early online date14 Sep 2017
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019


    • Buddhism
    • Business ethics
    • Mindfulness

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