Mindfulness and Customer or Patient Experience


This is a thought-provoking read if your organisation is looking for a fresh approach to enhance the customer or patient experience:


The comments received from a mindfulness-based programme delivered within a retail work team illustrate how the benefits for the workplace lie beyond wellbeing. 

In this case, sales advisors found they could give their attention more fully to their customers regardless of the busy environment and respond  more effectively to their needs with more patience, interest and compassion.  

What they said: 

  • “With customers, I am having deeper conversations with them. I can remember specific people, having discussions, and that this really gave me energy. Before this, I was really just “being efficient.”


  • “I experienced a kinder and friendlier approach towards customers, more curiosity in conversation with them, and taking more time to find the appropriate solution for them.”


  • I think the programme put me in contact with empathy. It put me in contact with customer problems and understanding them. It is about understanding their moments, I cannot expect that everyone acts or feels the same as I do. It was very productive.”


  • “I found customers took my advice, and I don’t think it was because of my knowledge but because I was more accepting of the fact that I had two or three people waiting behind.  I reacted calmly calling for help, not in a rush and staying open for my customer. It felt like a personalised service them.”

The question is, how is this possible through a workplace mindfulness programme?  

The programme can activate a particular psychological process in us, which is perhaps most simply explained through a diagram: 

The psychological process involves:

Objective awareness:  A combination of situational awareness (being aware of the environment at any given moment) and self-awareness (being aware in the moment of what we are thinking and feeling and any impulsive reactions in relation to a situation).

Self-regulation:  The process of understanding and managing our attention, emotions, thoughts, and automatic or “impulsive” reactions.

Objective awareness allows us to acknowledge any bias, emotion or thinking that may be influencing our perception or clouding our judgement of a situation and self regulation allows us to more skilfully manage our response, e.g., speak more calmly or with a more open rather than defensive manner.


If you work with customers or patients, when would this psychological process come in handy ?

Maybe at the end of a long day when we are particularly tired and our patience is running out?  

Maybe if we have a particularly upset customer or patient who doesn’t seem to be hearing what is being said?

Is this programme therefore relevant to your organisation?

First impressions and the quality of customer and patient interaction count. Remaining calm and open with customers or patients whilst handling multiple tasks simultaneously is a skill.
As this programme shows, this is a TRAINABLE skill. 

What next?

If you are interested in exploring this approach further, please do contact me.
For a workplace mindfulness programme to be effective it must be relevant and quickly helpful to employees and the programme design needs to keep them motivated and supported in developing new daily habits and mindsets. 
To achieve this, the programme needs to be co-built between a qualified mindfulness expert and the organisation. 

Anne Macdonald | Performance Psychology