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Spirituality in the workplace: practices, challenges, and recommendations.

Spirituality in the workplace has become an organizational behaviour issue in Canada. As 75% of Canadians indicate a religious affiliation, and as immigration and foreign worker programs lend themselves to an increasingly diverse workforce, there is a growing concern for Canadian employers to meet employees' spirituality needs. Further, evolving spirituality definitions demand a study to help organizations better serve employee needs. This research seeks to identify the types and extent of spirituality accommodation in Canadian organizations. Based on an extensive literature review and analysis of employer practices pertaining to spirituality needs, this study constructs four categories of spiritual practices: traditional religion, new age, community service, and creativity. The findings show significantly higher accommodation for creativity and community service than for traditional religion and new age practices. This paper proposes four recommendations to help managers manage spirituality ethically and equitably.

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Spirituality is one of the four key issues in contemporary organizational behavior (Langton, Robbins, & Judge, 2013). About 95% of Americans believe in God, and 81% indicate affiliation with a specific religious organization (Kutcher, Bragger, Rodriguez-Srednicki, & Masco, 2010). In Canada, 75% indicate a religious affiliation (Statistics Canada National Household Survey, 2011).

It is possible that meeting the spirituality needs of employees can result in employee retention, customer loyalty, and improved brand reputation. Many employers are encouraging spirituality as a way to boost loyalty and enhance morale (McLaughlin, 2009). For example, Orbitz.com, an online travel specialist, promotes spirituality to help employees stay focused, centred and energized at work (Kalsnes, 2014).

Langton et al. (2013) outlines four characteristics that differentiate organizations that accommodate spirituality from those that do not.

1. Strong Sense of Purpose--while profits are important, they are not the primary value; employees are inspired by a purpose they believe is important and worthwhile.

2. Trust and Respect--spiritual organizations are characterized by mutual trust, honesty, and openness, and managers are not afraid to admit mistakes.

3. Humanistic Work Practices--flexible work schedules, group and organization based rewards, narrowing of pay and status differentials, individual employee rights, employee empowerment, and job security.

4. Toleration of Employee Expression--employees can express frustration without worrying about negative consequences; they are encouraged to engage in gestures of reconciliation when they apologize to one another.

Thus, meeting employees' spirituality needs is also meeting their mental and emotional health needs for peace and inner fulfilment. Acknowledging spirituality needs means recognizing that employees seek meaningful work in the context of community and desire to integrate personal values with their work values. There is a possibility that employers who seek to enhance employee retention need to provide accommodations that nourish the inner life of employees, since job titles and monetary rewards can leave them unfulfilled. Spirituality accommodations help employees counterbalance the stress, demands and pressures of a turbulent pace of life.

Although belief in God is one key expression of spirituality, workplace spirituality is not about organized religious practices. Langton et al. (2013) identify three streams of spirituality: (1) personal inner experience based on interconnectedness, (2) guiding principles, virtues, ethics, values, emotions, wisdom, and intuition, and (3) the link between one's personal inner experience and how that experience is modelled in outer behaviours, principles, and practices. Steffler, Murdoch, and Gosselin (2014) captured the same "streams" but expanded the results to include the transcendent. They outlined three themes of spirituality: transcendent, connection between transcendent and worldly, and immediate experience-worldly.

Examples for transcendent include the belief in God, the supernatural and being cared for by a higher power and the accompanying actions such as prayer, ritual, and other religious observances. Examples for connection between transcendent and worldly include values, meaning and purpose, and the actions include connecting with others, living now for the afterlife, and sharing one's faith with others. These examples are similar to Langton et al.'s (2013) principles, virtues and ethics, and personal inner experience based on interconnectedness. Examples for immediate experience-worldly include pursuit of knowledge, gratitude, and strength, manifested through endorphin rush through intense exercise, helping others, nature, arts and major life events. These examples are similar to Langton et al.'s (2013) stream linking one's personal inner experience to their outer behaviours.

While several streams of spirituality in the workplace have been identified, we know very little about how organizations go about meeting the spiritual needs of employees or about the challenges involved in so doing. The present study reports an exploratory empirical study designed to advance our understanding in this area. The overarching question that guided the research was this: what are the organizational practices to accommodate the spirituality needs of employees?

Conceptualization of Spirituality in the Workplace

As mentioned previously, spirituality is more than a belief in God. We outlined the three streams of spirituality definitions by Langton et al. (2013) and incorporated them in the three themes of spirituality that Steffler et al. (2014) propose. Table 1 shows further definitions of spirituality among 20 peer-reviewed studies along with the number and percentage of studies that concur with each definition. The definitions in Table 1 can be classified under three areas of definition of inner, inter, and vertical connectedness, in relation to StefHer et al.'s (2014) three themes of spirituality.

First, Inner-Connectedness relates to spirituality expressed through principles, values, meaning, and purpose (Steffler et al., 2014):

"Values/human spirit" emphasizes principles and living now to prepare for the afterlife (Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers, & Thibeault, 2007; Kinjerski & Skrypnek, 2008).

* "Spirituality leadership" is the peace and confidence that translates to leadership qualities when one finds meaning in work and life (Badrinarayan & Madhavaram, 2008; Moore, 2008).

* "Meaningful work" is seeking work that is challenging, enhances self-esteem, and enables one to contribute meaningfully (Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens & Sherman, 2011; Ottaway, 2003).

* "Organizational values" is the alignment with employee's values that brings fulfillment and motivates performance (Jurkiewicz & Giacalone, 2004; Marques, Dhiman, & King, 2007).

* "Organizational performance" relates to the ethics, social responsibility and sustainable practices that an employee is proud to identify with (Altaf & Awan, 2011; Badrinarayanan & Madhavaram, 2008; Borstoff& Arlington, 2011).

* "Three levels of spirituality" refers to the efforts of an organization to facilitate spirituality accommodations at personal, team, and organizational levels (Ashmos & Duchon, 2000; Jurkiewicz & Giacalone, 2004).

Second, Inter-Connectedness relates to spirituality expressed through helping others and giving back to society (Steffler et al., 2014):

* "Interconnectedness" refers to meaningful and mutually satisfying relationships with others at work (Badrinarayan, 2009; Marques, 2005).

* "Sense of community" is the feeling that one fits in the community and enjoys reciprocal acknowledgement (Bygrave & Macmillan, 2008; Garcia-Zamor, 2003; Marques, 2006).

* "Balance" refers to the sense of completeness from the ability to balance one's career and relationships with colleagues and loved ones, as well as giving back to society (Borstoff & Arlington, 2011; Nwibere & Emecheta, 2012).

* "Multi-dimensional" refers to the connections with people, cultures, and environment in an age of increasing diversity (Badrinarayan, 2009; Freshman, 1999).

* "Job satisfaction" is camaraderie at work and fulfillment as a member who contributes to team achievements (Kolodinsky, Giacalone, & Jurkiewicz, 2008; Moore & Casper, 2006).

Third, Vertical Connectedness is related to the "transcendent," such as belief in God, the supernatural, being cared for by a higher power, prayer, and religion (Steffler et al., 2014):

* "Being religious" refers to the religious beliefs, practices, and observances at home and work as one's way of life (Kauanui et al., 2011; Kinjerski & Skrypnek, 2008).

* "A higher power that empowers and transforms" enables one to live in a way that may not be possible by one's own ability (Ottaway, 2003).

* "Acknowledgement of a higher being" is the belief that some higher being cares and helps the individual overcome difficulties (Altaf & Awan, 2011; Bygrave & Macmillan, 2008).

* "Transpersonal" refers to states of consciousness beyond personal identity (Kauanui et al., 2011; Kinjerski & Skrypnek, 2008).

* "Uniqueness" results from an individual's transformational experience through prayer and religious practices (Freshman, 1999; Jurkiewicz & Giacalone, 2004).

The definitions of inner, inter, and vertical connectedness would influence the kinds of spirituality accommodation that employers provide.

Appendix 1 shows a summary of organizational practices of spirituality based on the findings of 20 peer reviewed articles. It shows a continuum of employer practices from Organizational Culture to Spirituality Accommodations to instilling Responsibility Among Employees. Of central interest are the spirituality accommodations that promote social activities (noted by 65% of authors), meditation (50%), education (45%), physical wellness (35%), mental wellness (20%), and yoga (5%).

Appendix 2 highlights 40 of the best employers in Canada, representing 17 industries: airline, automobile, banking, clothing, consulting, engineering, finance, food, footwear, healthcare, hotel, insurance, information technology, legal, medical, publishing and travel. Collectively, they provide five categories of spirituality accommodations that could be classified under Inner, Inter, and Vertical Connectedness.

Creativity (55%) (1) can be classified under Inner-Connectedness and is the highest accommodation category to help maximize employee potential. Creativity includes wellness programs to maximize human potential and, ultimately, work productivity. These provisions include further education programs, skill development, professional development, flexible work schedules, relaxation and recreation, employee assistance programs, staff appreciation, and reward programs (Altaf & Awan, 2011; Corner, 2009; Steele & Bullock, 2009). They also include creative stimulations such as workspace decor, participation in problem-solving and time and space for relaxation and recreation to help employees rejuvenate and connect with their inner-self. Appendix 2 shows that this accommodation is common in service businesses such as airline (JetBlue), banking (Canadian Western), consulting (Accenture), finance (Edward Jones, Island Savings Credit Union, World Bank, ATB Financial, Canadian Apartment Properties Real Estate Investment Trust), insurance (Chubb, Allstate) and legal (MNP, Bennett Jones). This is possibly due to the need for creativity in sales and customer service.

Wellness (43%) programs, which can also be classified as Inner-Connectedness, are third highest, and they include mental and physical wellness with provisions for gym membership, health food programs, a health and wellness benefit plan, and onsite health professionals (Portner, Kraft, & Claycomb, 2003; Badrinarayanan & Madhavaram, 2008), as well as meditation and yoga (Corner, 2009). Appendix 2 shows medical businesses (Genentech, GlaxoSmithKline, BC Biomedical Laboratories) providing these accommodations, which are also becoming the standard in a number of technology giants such as Google, Microsoft, Twitter, Epic Systems and SAS.

Community Service (45%), the second highest category, can be classified under Inter-Connectedness. Community Service refers to societal contributions that enhance the employee's self-esteem and employer's public image. The accommodations include corporate social responsibility projects such as environmental conservation, practising ethics in business operations, and encouraging volunteerism and recognizing employees' contributions to community services. Specific provisions might include paid days for volunteers' time in community service, matching employee donations to charities, and getting employees involved in green initiatives, similar to the social activities in Appendix 1 (Cullen, 2003; Gardner, 2007; Gotsis & Kortezi, 2008; Groen, 2001; Harrington, Prezois, & Gooden, 2001; Kakabadse, 2002; Petchsawang & Duchon, 2009; Sheep, 2006). This accommodation is found across the industries among best employers such as automobile (Cadillac, British Columbia Automobile Association), engineering (PCL Constructors Inc.), finance (Island Savings Credit Union, ATB Financial, Canadian Apartment Properties Real Estate Investment Trust), legal (MNP, Bennett Jones), and medical (GlaxoSmithKline).

Formal and Informal Religions, the two lowest appearing categories, can be classified under Vertical Connectedness. The common employee need here is the freedom to express spiritual beliefs (Groen, 2001; Harrington, Preziosi, & Gooden, 2001; Laabs, 1995; Moore & Casper, 2006; Petchsawang & Duchon, 2009; Thompson & MacNeil, 2006; Turner, 1999). The Formal Religion (33%) provisions allow practice of major religions such as Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam. These provisions allow the freedom to read sacred texts, share respectfully about one's faith, practice religious observances and celebrate religious festivals. Formal religion is accommodated in five of the six information technology (IT) employers (Google, Microsoft, Apple, Xerox, and Yahoo). Other accommodating sectors include the automobile (Ford), finance (World Bank), food (General Mills, Tyson), footwear (Nike), medical (Greentech), publishing (Sounds True), and travel (Orbitz) industries.

Informal Religion (25%) is the lowest category with provisions such as yoga (Corner, 2009). Informal Religion refers to evolving forms of spirituality beliefs. This construct provides accommodations for new age practices; yoga and martial arts originating from spiritual disciplines such as kungfu, judo, and taekwando, redesigning workstations according to fengshui or geomancy, placement of deity images or crystals at workstations to invoke positive energy. Again, the IT industry stands out in this category with accommodations by Microsoft, Apple, and Twitter. Others include the clothing (Patagonia), finance (World Bank), footwear (Nike), insurance (Chubb), medical (BC Biomedical), publishing (Sounds True), and travel (Orbitz) industries.

Hypotheses

H1.1 Creativity is a significant spirituality practice among Canadian employers

The findings in Appendices 1 and 2 suggest that employers prioritize accommodations for spirituality needs related to Inner Connectedness (Creativity and Wellness) and Inter Connectedness (Community Service) over Vertical Connectedness (Formal Religion and Informal Religion). The focus on Inner-Connectedness can be understood from the organization's perspective to maximize productivity. Although there is not much empirical evidence between creativity and productivity, studies often associate productivity with innovation, and innovation with creativity. An Adobe survey among 5,000 adults in five countries links creativity with personal and professional success as well as innovation and benefits for society, and 85% of U.S. respondents believe creativity makes them better leaders (Beaubien, 2016). DiPietro and Anoruo (2006) defined innovation as one of four components of creativity and proposed that governments formulate strategies to encourage creativity and innovations to improve export performance. De Jong and Den Hartog (2007) found 13 leadership behaviours that influence employees' innovative behaviour. Strazdas, Cerneviciute, and Jancoras (2016) found no clarity in the order of importance among factors that affect team productivity in creative industries. Swann and Birke (2005) proposed that creativity influences design and research and development, and both in turn influence innovation, thus leading to productivity. Anderson, Potocnik, and Zhou (2014) reviewed studies of innovation and creativity in organizations from 2002 to 2013 and concluded creativity is related with the initial stage of idea generation and innovation, the latter phase of idea implementation. These studies suggest the need to foster creativity in organizations to enhance innovation and productivity.

H1.2 Community Service is a significant spirituality practice among Canadian employers

Community service comprises voluntary activities to sustain social, economic, and environmental wellness that help enhance the firm's corporate image and competitive performance. The search for literature into community service largely yielded studies related to the competitive advantages of corporate social responsibility (CSR). Global Affairs Canada (2017) defines CSR as the organization's voluntary activities to operate in an economic, social, and environmentally sustainable manner. Caramela (2017) outlines four categories of social responsibility for business success: environmental efforts, philanthropy, ethical labor practices, and volunteering. Lantos (2001) proposed that strategic CSR is good for business and society, and that marketing should take a lead role in strategic CSR activities. Robinson, Kleffner, Bertels, and Street (2008) found empirical evidence that inclusion on the Dow Jones Sustainability Index resulted in a permanent increase in a firm's share price. Sousa Filho, Wanderley, Gomez, and Farache (2010) proposed that social responsibility strategies help develop a model for competitive advantage for the firm. Madueno, Jorge, Conesa, and Martinez-Martinez (2016) found CSR practices contributed to the increase in competitive performance of organizations. Shen, Wu, Chen, and Fang (2016) found that CSR banks overwhelmingly outperform non-CSR banks in terms of return on assets and equity.

H2 There is a significant difference in spirituality practices by industries

There are literature findings on provisions for everything from formal religion in the correctional and palliative services to meaningful jobs and hope at workplace in the academic and manufacturing industries, though much research in this area seems to focus on service industries, compared to other industries. Formal religion according to each offender's faith is used in the correctional service in Canada (Correctional Service Canada, 2017) and in the police force to help law enforcers manage stress (Chopko, Facemire, Palmeri, & Schwartz, 2016). Kalish's (2012) review of empirical literature on spirituality and spiritual care from June 2010 to December 2011 found researchers extending assessment of spiritual care beyond palliative and oncology patients to other medical populations.

Spillane (2001) traced hospitality to apostolic spirituality--a positive attitude towards the world (human and institutions) and history (change and conversion) that reflects three basic qualities in Jesus' life of hospitable service to others: responsiveness, competence, and respect. Citing the hospitality industry in Las Vegas, Smith (2013) argued that hospitality workers experience a deep sense of meaning and fulfillment that is spiritually engaging when they serve the needs of guests for rest and respite. In the academic industry, Hertz and Friedman (2015) proposed that, after the financial crisis of 2008, spirituality belonged in finance and accounting curricula, as 80% of first-year college students expressed interest in spiritual values that help make companies ethical and work meaningful.

A common research finding among various industries is the significant association between workplace spirituality and work commitment that helps to reduce turnover intention, such as Gatling, Kim, and Milliman's (2016) study of 190 supervisors in a large U.S. hospitality organization; Wainana, Iravo, and Waitutu's (2014) study of 282 academicians in private and public universities in Kenya; and Ahiauzu and Asawo's (2009) and Kumar, Pradhan, and Kesari Jena's (2016) study of personnel in Nigerian and Indian manufacturing organizations respectively. Gupta (2015) proposed spiritual training to reduce stress and increase employee satisfaction in the hotel industry, which is known to have the highest rate of attrition. Beehner and Blackwell (2016) found the effect of a workplace spirituality program on turnover intention among 53 fast food employees was not significant and proposed studying industry differences for future research.

H3 There is a significant difference in spirituality practices by number of employees in an organization

Can bigger firms afford more accommodations with better resources and smaller firms have the flexibility to better meet the spirituality needs of employees? The size of a firm is determined by the number of employees; small firms are up to 99 employees, medium firms employ between 100 and 499, and large firms employ 500 or more (Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada, 2017). Kurt, Yamin, Sinkovics, and Sinkovics's (2016) research into network commitment found that, while spirituality was a significant antecedent, firm size was less important among 120 respondents of small and medium enterprises from four Anatolian Tigers. (2) Although Tsafe and Rahman's (2013) study among 63 respondents from four microfinance firms in Malaysia found shariah spirituality influenced board service performance, they also found that neutral shariah spirituality based on personal moral principles was a significant influence. Information as to whether the board service improved the firms' performance was not discussed. Zin and Adnan (2016) proposed a conceptual study of the relationship between Islamic values and small business performance. The focus of spirituality in the Islamic studies emphasized shariah compliance to operate business by Islamic principles and not employee spiritual needs, much like meeting the certification standards of the International Standard Organization.

Franklin's (2010) study of American entrepreneurs found a 21% level of servant leadership practice among 48 small business owners as well as a statistically significant, negative correlation between spirituality and servant leadership. Dyer and Whitten's (2006) study of 261 S&P 500 firms between 1991 and 2000 found that family firms were more socially responsible than non-family firms and suggested image, reputation, and a desire to protect family assets as key reasons. Fitjar (2010) found that media scrutiny and competition seemed to be the basis for drivers of social responsibility among small businesses in the Norwegian graduate uniform industry, a market devoid of large corporations. Recrudescence, an intrinsic ability for radical innovations by employing daring ideas, has also been found more probable in small firms (Kwasnicki, 2011).

Nisen (2013) reported 18 extremely religious big American companies that engage in varying spirituality practices despite opposition from media and other interest groups, such as Chick-fil-A that closes outlets on Sundays, Alaskan Airlines which provides each breakfast tray with an inspirational notecard and a passage from the Old Testament, and one may find a Book of Mormon alongside the Bible in the Marriot Hotel rooms.

The preceding literature suggests Islamic compliance is the main spirituality concern among large and small medium enterprises in Muslim countries. Firms in Western countries, on the other hand, have the freedom to provide accommodations that range from meeting social responsibility needs to creativity to pastoral care. It would seem the larger the firm, the more resources to provide a variety of accommodations.

H4 There is a positive relationship between Formal Religion and Creativity, and H5 there is a positive relationship between Informal Religion and Creativity.

While Community Service is linked to developing a competitive advantage, and Creativity is linked to innovation that improves productivity, Religion can be a sensitive issue at the workplace. If the practice of Religion results in Creativity that generates higher productivity, employers would have a better justification to provide the accommodations.

Marion Milner, a psychoanalyst whose life spanned the 20th century, is often associated with spirituality, creativity and mental health (Mayo, 2016). Milner used journaling to explore her relationship with God, and painting and doodling in her therapy with patients (Milner, 1950). She believed the key to creativity lay in the overlapping relationship between inner reality and external (shared) reality, and in that overlap an innate, unconscious, human striving for an ideal state could be realised (Puckey, 2014). Milner's vertical connectedness (religion) seem to have influenced her expression of inner connectedness (eg., creativity, such as painting) and inter connectedness (eg., service to patients and society).

Au-Yong-Oliveira and Almeida (2015) sought to understand the relationship between creativity and spirituality through ten personal interviews and found "normal" people do not use creativity in their professions to the extent "successful" people do. Their interviewees were spiritual, and concerned with qualities that bring happiness to both self and others, but not religious. Their findings seem to indicate that spirituality centred on inner (self) and inter (others) connectedness does not influence the need for creativity at work. This contrasts Milner's spiritual exploration with God (vertical-connectedness), which birthed creative ideas (inner-connectedness) to help treat her patients (inter-connectedness) and resulted in the eight books she published on the deeper meanings of human experience from a broad range of experience (Puckey, 2014). Spirituality that begins with God, rather than one's inner self, seems to lead to creativity that contributes to the betterment for mankind

Corry, Tracey, and Lewis (2015) interviewed ten Northern Irish and Irish artists who believed their creativity was rooted in their spirituality, which gave them a different perspective of stressful events, transformed emotional states from negative to positive, and increased their resilience and coping skills. The spirituality-creativity connection has often been proposed in theoretical concept papers (Coleman, 1998; Mayo, 2016; Miller & Cook-Greuter, 2000; Mooney & Timmins, 2007) but quantitative approaches are rare, as the proponents' argued spirituality is difficult to measure (Lane, 2008). Corry, Mallet, Lewis, and Abdel-Khalek's (2013) study of 610 students from Europe, America, and Kuwait comprising Muslims, Christians, and "other," found the constructs of creative and spiritual coping via religion positively correlated. Chun and Youn's (2014) three experiments of spirituality on creative cognition found that spirituality enhances creativity. Corry et al. (2013) explained that the more meaningful something is to someone, the more spiritual or "sacred" it becomes. In this respect, Formal Religion is the more sacred, with holy practices and commandments among faithful adherents, while Informal Religion allows practitioners to experiment different forms of new-age spirituality from yoga to geomancy.

Methodology

Research Instrument

The research ethics board approved a questionnaire comprising the four constructs of formal religion, informal religion, community service, and creativity. We pre-tested the questionnaire via online, personal interview, and self-administered methods among 30 working adults. Online respondents completed the questionnaire within five minutes, while self-administered respondents completed it within ten minutes. The final questionnaire contained 55 variables with a 5-point Likert scale (1= Strongly Disagree; 5 = Strongly Agree).

A variables measured the degree of accommodation for Formal Religion with 12 questions, including one reverse-scored question. Five questions focused on the employee's practice of religion at the workplace (A1 to A5), and seven focused on the employer's accommodations for the employees' religious needs (A6 to A12).

B variables measured the degree of accommodations for Informal Religion with 13 questions, including one reverse question. Six focused on New Age (B1 to B6), five covered spiritual, mental, and physical wellness (B7 to B11), and two covered personal beliefs (B12.B13).

C variables measured the degree of accommodation for community connectedness, ethics, and corporate social responsibility (categorized as Community Service) with 15 questions, including one reverse question. Five covered corporate social responsibility (C9, C12 to C15), two were on recognition (C8, CIO), six on ethical practices at workplace (C2 to C7), and two on employee's perception of community service (C1, C3).

D variables measured the degree of accommodation for Creativity expressed through provisions that promote creativity, continuous learning, and personal development with 15 questions, including two reverse questions. Nine were on creative stimulations such as workspace decor and participation in problem-solving (D1 to D8, D15), two on continuous learning opportunities (D9, DIO), and four on time and space for relaxation, recreation, and creativity (D11 to D14).

There were 12 demographic variables with two related to employer (industry and number of employees) and 10 on respondent characteristics (gender, age, ethnicity, marital status, annual income, education, religion, role at workplace [employer or employee], province and country).

Research Sampling

The sampling process followed five key steps (Luck & Rubin, 1987; Malhotra, 2013). The sampling frame comprises businesses in Edmonton, the capital of Alberta. Of 103 cities in Alberta, five are listed among the Top 10 cities for entrepreneurs (Somerset, 2013). Edmonton has the second highest number of businesses at 31,390 (Alberta Government, 2013). In order to maximize the number of firms and industries sampled, we surveyed one working adult (aged 18 or above) from each firm in Edmonton. A total of 200 respondents were desired to provide a sound basis for estimation (Hair, Black, Babin, Anderson, & Tatham, 2010), and a minimum of 100 is the target for an exploratory study.

Methods of Statistical Analysis

For research objective 1, we used analysis by mean to help determine the rank order of spirituality practices common among employers and/or that matter most to the respondents. We determined significant practices through a one sample t-test. For research objectives 2 and 3, we used the chi-square test and independent samples test to find significant associations between variables and differences between samples respectively (Pallant, 2010; Yates, Moore, & McCabe, 1999). For research objective 4, we used the Pearson's Correlation coefficient to test the correlation between Formal Religion and Creativity and between Informal Religion and Creativity.

Results

Data Collection

A total of 100 completed questionnaires were usable, thus meeting the target for an exploratory study. Of these questionnaires, 36 were from social media and 64 from personal interviews (largely self-administered interviews). The respondents included researcher's former students (now employed in various industries), working adults in after-degree programs and professional advancement courses, as well as weekend shoppers at the mall and visitors to a family day carnival.

Demographics

Table 2 shows respondents representing a total of 17 industries. The three industries with the highest number of respondents were retail trade at 21 %, health care and social assistance at 13%, and accommodation and food services at 9%. In total, 58% were service industries, 25% wholesale and retail trade, 8% goods-producing, and 7% other industries. A total of 46% of respondents were from small firms (1 to 99 employees), 20% medium firms (100 to 499 employees), and 34% large firms (500 employees or more).

Cronbach Alpha Reliability Test

The final scales demonstrate strong scale properties. Cronbach's alphas for 12 Formal Religion items, 13 Informal Religion items, 15 Community Service items, and 15 Creativity items were 0.8, 0.87, 0.9, and 0.9 respectively, indicating good to excellent internal consistency.

H1.1 and H1.2 Identifying the Significant Spirituality Practices among Employers

Appendix 3 shows the results of the one sample t-test. The first 19 items were significant; they demonstrated mean values from 4.06 to 3.26 leaning towards Strongly Agree and Agree. Items 20 through 34 were not significant. Items 35 and upward were significant, ranging from 2.76 to 1.82 and gravitating towards Disagree and Strongly Disagree. Among the 19 positively significant variables, seven were D variables (Creativity), five C (Community Service), three A (Formal Religion), and two B (Informal Religion). The results indicate that employers pay more attention to accommodations for Creativity and Community Service and less to Formal and Informal Religion. Hence, the results support H1.1 and H1.2 that the more significant spirituality practices among employers are provisions for Creativity and Community Service.

H2 Investigate the Significant Differences in the Spirituality Practices by Industries

We collapsed the service, wholesale and retail trade, and goods-producing industries with others into two categories to enable significance testing: 58% services and 42% trade/goods-producing/others. The chi-square test of independence found a significant relation between Industry and Spirituality Practices in four variables, as shown in Table 3.1: "My employer allows employees to organize yoga classes" (B1), "My employer conducts surveys on physical wellness at the workplace" (B10), "My employer conducts surveys on mental wellness at the workplace" (B11), and "Giving back to the community is important to me" (C1).

The independent samples t-test in Table 3.2 showed significant differences between services and trade/goods-producing/others industries for variables B10 and B11 but not for B1 and C1. Three other variables also showed significant differences: "My employer makes provision for work-life balance" (B6), "I have a meaningful job" (B13), and "My employer allows discussion on religion at the workplace" (A11). We found that the services industry provides a significantly higher level of accommodation for work-life balance (B6), physical wellness (B10), mental wellness (B11), a meaningful job (B13), and discussion on religion (All) than the trade/goodsproducing/ others. Hence, the findings support H2 that there is a significant difference in spirituality practices by industries.

H3 Investigate the Significant Differences in Spirituality Practices by Number of Employees in an Organization

The chi-square test of independence found a significant relation between the number of employees in an organization and "My employer allows me to practice my religion at work" (A7), [X.sup.2] (4, N=99) =12.13, p = 0.016, as shown in Table 4.1. The independent samples t-test confirms a significant difference between small/medium firms (one to 499 employees) and large firms (from 500 employees upward) in A7 as shown in Table 4.2. Hence, the findings support H3: there is a significant difference in spirituality practice by number of employees in an organization. Small and medium firms were found to provide significantly more allowance for employees to practise their religion at work.

H4 & H5 Investigate the Correlation between Religion and Creativity at the Workplace

Correlations between Formal Religion and Creativity and between Informal Religion and Creativity are reported in Table 5.1 and Table 5.2. The correlations in Table 5.1 showed a significant weak positive relationship between Formal Religion variable A1 and three Creativity variables (D10, D9, and D12), and between A8 and D7. "My religion is an important part of my life" (A1) was correlated with "My employer makes provision for continuous learning" (DIO) r(95) = .23, p = .024. Additionally, "My employer allocates space for employees' religious practices" (A8) was correlated with "My employer consults employees on how to improve work productivity" (D7) r(94) = .26, p = .012.

A significant weak negative relationship was found between variables A9 and Dl, A9 and D3, and A6 and D2. "My employer allows religious attire at work" (A9) was correlated with "I feel at peace in my workplace" (D1),r(94) = -.21 = .041. It was also correlated with "My creativity is not appreciated at work" (D3), r(94) = -.29, p = .004. "My employer provides meal options for religious observance at company events" (A6) and "I work in a creative environment" (D2) were correlated, r(93) = -.26,p = .012.

Table 5.2 shows weak to moderate negative correlations between Informal Religion and Creativity variables. We found a significant weak negative relationship between Creativity D1 and six Informal Religion B variables. "I feel at peace at my workplace" (D1) was correlated with "My employer accommodates martial arts exercises such as tai chi, judo and karate" (B5), r(93) = -.20, p = .048, as well as "My employer has appointed a committee dedicated to the spiritual wellbeing of employees" (B7), r(94) = -.21, p = .041, and "My employer accommodates new age religious practices" (B3), r(93) = -.21, p = .041. Additionally, Dl was correlated with "My employer integrates spiritual needs and well-being of employees to organize yoga classes" (B4), r(92) = -.25, p = .017, as well as "My employer integrates spiritual needs and well-being of employees into its strategic plan" (B8), r(94) = -.25, p = .015, and "My employer allows employees to organize yoga classes" (B1), r(92) = -.28, p = .006.

A significant weak negative relationship was also found between Creativity D10 and Informal Religion B9 and B4, and between D11 and B9. "My employer makes provision for continuous learning" (D10) was correlated with "My employer conducts surveys on spiritual wellness at the workplace" (B9), r(94) = -.23, p = .022, and with "My employer uses fengshui techniques to enhance my work space" (B4), r(92) = -.23, p = .023. "My employer gives time off each week to reflect" (D11) was correlated with "My employer conducts surveys on spiritual wellness at the workplace" (B9), r(94) = -.24, p = .019. A significant moderate negative relationship was found between "I feel at peace in my workplace" (D1) and "My employer organizes yoga classes for employees" (B2), r (94) = -.36, p = .000.

In summary, the findings show significant relationships from weak positive to weak negative between Formal Religion and Creativity variables. The weak positive relationships were between "Religion is an important part of my life" (A1) and "Provision for continuous learning" (D10), "Personal development seminars" (D9) and "Space for relaxation" (D12), and between "Space for employees' religious practices" (A8) and "Employer consults employees on improving work productivity" (D7).

The weak negative relationships were between "Freedom to wear religious attire" (A9), "Peace in workplace" (Dl), and "Creativity not appreciated" (D3). There was also a weak negative relationship between "Meal options for religious observance at company events" (A6) and "Creative environment" (D2). In contrast, there were only significant negative relationships from weak negative to moderate negative between Informal Religion and Creativity variables. The weak negative relationships were between "Peace in workplace" (Dl) and six variables: "Accommodation for martial arts" (B5), "Committee dedicated to employees' spiritual well-being" (B7), "New age practices" (B3), "Fengshui to enhance workspace" (B4), "Employer integrates employees' spiritual needs and well-being in strategic plan" (B8), and "Employees allowed to organize yoga classes" (B1). Similarly, a weak negative relationship surfaced between "Provision for continuous learning" (D10), "Spiritual wellness surveys" (B9), and "Fengshui to enhance workspace" (B4). "Time off each week to reflect" (D11) and "Spiritual wellness surveys" (B9) were also correlated weakly and negatively. The moderate negative correlation was found between "Employer organizes yoga classes for employees" (B2) and "Peace in workplace" (D1).

The findings partly support H4 for a positive relationship between Formal Religion and Creativity, as the relationships between the variables range from weak positive to weak negative relationships. The findings do not support H5 for a positive relationship between Informal Religion and Creativity, as the relationships between the variables range from weak negative to moderate negative.

The findings of research objectives 1 through 4 are tabulated in Table 6.

Discussion: Challenges and Recommendations

There are two key managerial challenges arising from the research findings. First, Creativity and Community Service accommodations are prioritized over Formal Religion and Informal Religion. Two factors may have contributed to the results. (1) Historical models of management were based on rationality and eliminated concern about employees' inner life (Langton et. al, 2013). Employers would have found it easier to manage by objective goals and common needs as opposed to meeting the religious needs of different individuals or groups. (2) In an increasingly diverse workforce, it is difficult for employers to cater to every religious practice (Krahnke & Hoffman, 2002; Willett, 2011).

Second, Formal Religion shows more positive relationship with Creativity than Informal Religion. This seems to suggest that Formal Religion may have practices that can positively expand the creative potential of employees compared to Informal Religion.

Meeting employee needs for Formal Religion seems easier than Informal Religion, which can take many forms, from yoga to martial arts to crystals and incense to spiritual gurus to practices that invoke the supernatural. While Formal Religion has established universal practices, Informal Religion is so wide ranging in practice that employers and fellow employees may find it uncomfortable. Formal Religion encourages not only a relationship with God but also a relationship with others, extending a helping hand to people of different faith and sharing universal values of love, and respect and benevolence, which are more aligned with organizational values than some manifestations of Informal Religion.

Developing Creativity in employees takes more than meeting the religious needs. It involves providing tools such as education and personal development programs to motivate and maximize creative potential. Perhaps those who seek to justify the accommodation of formal or informal religion should first demonstrate creative contributions that maximize work productivity resulting from their religious practices. Consider that the failed 3M Post-It stickers turned into a success when employee Art Fry used them to bookmark his hymnbook in church without damaging the pages (Glass & Hume, 2013).

While an organization's strategic plan often allocates a budget for social responsibility, it rarely has one for religious accommodations. Four recommendations below address the issue ethically and equitably.

Cultivate Spirituality Sensitivity Training

Organizations can organize education programs on religions to encourage openness and tolerance. Instead of eliminating Christmas, celebrating other religious festivals as well can help employees embrace diversity (HR Council Canada, 2014). Recent shootings in Europe and Ottawa, Canada have united people from all walks of life to fight extremism, thus demonstrating that an embrace of openness and tolerance is not only possible but also a hopeful way forward.

Define Religious Accommodation Policy

Haber (2006) found people are increasingly more open about their faith practices at the workplace. Organizations cannot ignore the need to cultivate a culture of inclusion, and leadership from the top need to take an interest to study the need and define a policy that clarifies decision processes for religious accommodations.

Create a Checklist on Religious Accommodation

Organizations can consult employees to create a checklist for religious accommodation assessment that ensure fairness to all applications. A committee with representation from each religion at the workplace can be tasked to evaluate requests for religious accommodation based on the checklist's criteria.

Align Corporate Values with Employee Values

Communicating corporate values prior to recruitment helps ensure potential employees share the same values. While people may differ on views of spirituality, they share universal values such as respect, diligence, generosity, and innovation (Schwartz, 1998). Dr. Mahathir, former Prime Minister of Malaysia, said if the common law could provide justice for Muslims and non-Muslims, it would have fulfilled Islam's message of justice (FMT Reporters, April 4, 2015). Adopting a common set of universal values would help organizations build a corporate culture that promotes mutual respect and act as a checklist against extremism.

Conclusion

This research contributes in three key ways. First, it provides an overarching and measurable definition of spirituality. Second, it examines the relationship between spirituality and creativity. Third, it discusses the managerial challenges in implementing spirituality accommodations and provides four recommendations to manage the issues ethically. Future research could enlarge sample sizes to investigate differences among ethnicities and religions, as well as the desirability of accommodations from the employees' perspective. Scholars might also research the types of accommodations that promote harmony and teamwork and those that disrupt collegiality and productivity. Finally, researchers might wish to study the factors that would moderate the negative correlations between religion and creativity to provide insights that help design religious accommodations that maximize employees' creativity.

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(1) In the following descriptions, the parentheses following each category indicate the percentage of best employers that implement related programs.

(2) A number of Turkish cities have experienced unusual and impressive economic growth since the 1980s. This particular group of cities are now commonly referred to as "Anatolian Tigers".

Mark Kam Loon Loo

Concordia University of Edmonton

Author Note: Mark Kam Loon Loo, Department of Management, Concordia University of Edmonton.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Mark Kam Loon Loo, Department of Management, Concordia University of Edmonton, 7128 Ada Boulevard, Edmonton, AB, T5B 4E4. Email: mark.loo@concordia.ab.ca

Author Information

LOO, MARK K. L. Address: Concordia University of Edmonton, 7128 Ada Boulevard, Edmonton, AB, T5B 4E4. Email: mark.loo@ concordia.ab.ca Title: Associate Professor. Degrees-. BA (Psychology, Mass Communication), National University of Malaysia; EMBA (Management and Training), Bath University, UK; PhD (Management), Multimedia University of Malaysia. Specializations: Marketing, Advertising and promotion, Diversity management.
TABLE 1

Definitions of Spirituality

                                     Inner Connectedness

Author                               Spiritual       Meaningful
                                     Leadership/     Work
                                     Human Spirit/
                                     Values

1. Ottaway (2003)                                         X
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)             X
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers             X
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &               X              X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)           X
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)                  X              X
7. Badrinarayan (2009)                     X              X
8. Freshman (1999)                         X
9. Marques (2005)                          X              X
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)          X              X
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)                           X
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &                                X
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)                                 X
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)
16. Badrinarayanan &                       X              X
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)                           X              X
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)                             X
19. Marques (2006)
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)
    Number of Authors                     11             12
    Percentage of Authors                 55%            60%

Author                               Organizational   Organizational
                                     Values           Performance/
                                                      Three Levels
                                                      of Workplace
                                                      Spirituality

1. Ottaway (2003)
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &                                X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)           X                X
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)                                   X
7. Badrinarayan (2009)                                      X
8. Freshman (1999)
9. Marques (2005)                          X                X
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)          X                X
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)                             X
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &                                  X
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)                                   X
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)                            X
16. Badrinarayanan &                                        X
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)                                            X
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)                               X
19. Marques (2006)                                          X
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)                                     X
    Number of Authors                      3                15
    Percentage of Authors                 15%              75%

Author                               Interconnectedness   Sense of
                                                          Community/
                                                          Completeness

1. Ottaway (2003)
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &                 X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)             X
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)
7. Badrinarayan (2009)                       X
8. Freshman (1999)
9. Marques (2005)                            X
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)            X                 X
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)                                X
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &                   X
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)                    X
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)                      X                 X
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)
16. Badrinarayanan &                         X
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)                             X
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)                X                 X
19. Marques (2006)                                             X
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)                      X
    Number of Authors                        12                5
    Percentage of Authors                   60%               25%

                                     Inter Connectedness

Author                               Balance,            Job
                                     Multi-dimensional   Satisfaction

1. Ottaway (2003)
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)               X
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &                 X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)
7. Badrinarayan (2009)                       X
8. Freshman (1999)                           X
9. Marques (2005)
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)              X
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &                                    X
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)                                     X
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)             X
16. Badrinarayanan &                                          X
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)                X
19. Marques (2006)                           X                X
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)                                       X
    Number of Authors                        8                5
    Percentage of Authors                   40%              25%

                                     Vertical Connectedness

Author                               Religious/      Empowering/
                                     Higher Power/   Transforming
                                     Transpersonal

1. Ottaway (2003)                                         X
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)             X
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers             X
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &               X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)
7. Badrinarayan (2009)
8. Freshman (1999)
9. Marques (2005)
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)            X
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &                                X
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)
16. Badrinarayanan &                                      X
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)
19. Marques (2006)                         X
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)                    X              X
    Number of Authors                      6              4
    Percentage of Authors                 30%            20%

Author                               Uniqueness

1. Ottaway (2003)
2. Kinjerksi & Skrypnek (2011)           X
3. Griffith, Caron, Desrosiers
   & Thibeault (2007)
4. Kauanui, Thomas, Rubens &             X
   Sherman (2011)
5. Marques, Dhiman & King (2007)
6. Ashmos & Duchon (2000)
7. Badrinarayan (2009)                   X
8. Freshman (1999)                       X
9. Marques (2005)
10. Jurkiewicz & Giacalone (2008)        X
11. Bygrave & Macmillian (2008)
12. Kolodinsky, Giacolne &
    Jurkiewicz (2008)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)
14. Garcia-Zamor (2003)
15. Borstorff & Arlington (2011)
16. Badrinarayanan &
    Madhavaram (2008)
17. Moore (2008)
18. Nwibere & Emecheta (2012)
19. Marques (2006)
20. Altaf & Awan (2011)
    Number of Authors                    5
    Percentage of Authors               25%

TABLE 2

Respondents' Organization by Industry (n=98)

Industry                                                N     Percent

  1. Real estate and rental and leasing                 1.0      1.0
  2. Manufacturing                                      3.0      3.1
  3. Mining, quarrying and oil or gas extraction        4.0      4.1
  4. Health care and social assistance                 13.0     13.3
  5. Public administration                              5.0      5.1
  6. Finance and insurance                              4.0      4.1
  7. Wholesale trade                                    4.0      4.1
  8. Retail trade                                      21.0     21.4
  9. Educational service                                6.0      6.1
  10. Professional scientific and technical             3.0      3.1
      services
  11. Transportation and warehousing                    4.0      4.1
  12. Administrative and support, waste                 3.0      3.1
     management and remediation services
  13. Accommodation and food services                   9.0      9.2
  14. Other services (except public administration)     6.0      6.1
  15. Agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting        1.0      1.0
  16. Arts, entertainment and recreation                4.0      4.1
  17. Other, please specify                             7.0      7.1
Total                                                  98.0    100.0

TABLE 3.1

Chi-Square Tests between Industry and Variables B1, B10, B11 and C1

                                        Pearson Chi-Square

Spirituality Practices at Workplace     Value    df   Asymp. Sig.
                                                       (2-sided)

B1 My employer allows employees to       9.26 *  3        .026
  organize yoga classes
B10 My employer conducts surveys on     18.32 *  4        .001
  physical wellness at the workplace
B11 My employer conducts surveys on     14.64 *  4        .006
  mental wellness at the workplace
C1 Giving back to the community is      10.04 *  3        .018
  important to me

Note. * 80% or more cells with expected count 5 or more. The minimum
expected counts are greater than 1.

TABLE 3.2

Independent Samples Test for Significance Difference between
Services Industry and Trade/Goods-Producing/Others
Industry

                                                        Standard
Item                   Industry                  Mean   Deviation

B6 My employer makes   Services                  3.57      .96
provision for          Trade/Goods-Producing/    2.92     1.40
work-life balance.     Others

B10 My employer        Services                  3.09      .97
conducts surveys on    Trade/Goods-Producing/    2.28     1.26
physical wellness at   Others
the workplace.

B11 My employer        Services                  2.91     1.04
conducts surveys on    Trade/Goods-Producing/    2.21     1.12
mental wellness at     Others
the workplace.

B13 I have a           Services                  3.86      .66
meaningful job.        Trade/Goods-Producing/    3.49     1.17
                       Others

All My employer        Services                  3.03     1.93
allows discussion on   Trade/Goods-Producing/    3.48      .78
religion at the        Others
workplace.

                                       Sig.
Item                     t     df   (2-tailed)

B6 My employer makes   2.70            .008
provision for                  95
work-life balance.

B10 My employer        3.59            .001
conducts surveys on            95
physical wellness at
the workplace.

B11 My employer        3.10    75      .003
conducts surveys on
mental wellness at
the workplace.

B13 I have a           2.02            .047
meaningful job.                95

All My employer        -2.41           .018
allows discussion on           95
religion at the
workplace.

TABLE 4.1

Chi-Square Tests between Number of Employees and Variable A7

                                         Pearson Chi-Square

                                                        Asymp. Sig.
Spirituality Practices at Workplace      Value     df   (2-sided)

A7 My employer allows me to practice     12.127'   4    .016
my religion at work.

Note. * 80% or more cells with expected count 5 or more. The minimum
expected count is 3.09.

TABLE 4.2

Independent Samples Test between Small/Medium and Large Firms

                                                          Standard
Item                             Industry          Mean   Deviation

A7 My employer allows me to      Small/Medium      3.34   1.03
practice my religion at work.    Firm (1 to 499)

                                 Large Firm        2.71   1.09
                                 (500 or more)

                                             Sig.
Item                             t      df   (2-tailed)

A7 My employer allows me to      2.80   64   .007
practice my religion at work.

TABLE 5.1

Correlation between Formal Religion (A) and Creativity (D)

                                                        Pearson
Formal Religion             Creativity                Correlation

A1 My religion is an        D10 My employer makes        .229 *
important part of my life   provision for
                            continuous learning

                            D9 My employer requires      .259 *
                            employees to attend
                            personal development
                            seminars

                            D12 My employer             .261 **
                            allocates a space for
                            relaxation

A8 My employer allocates    D7 My employer consults      .257 *
space for employees'        employees on how to
religious practices         improve work
                            productivity

A9 My employer allows       D11 feel at peace in my     -.209 *
religious attire at work    workplace

                            D3 My creativity is not     -.292 **
                            appreciated at work

A6 My employer provides     D21 work in a creative       -256 *
meal options for religious  environment
observance at company
events

                            df=      Sig.
Formal Religion             N-2   (2-tailed)     Strength

A1 My religion is an        95       .024      Weak Positive
important part of my life

                            94       .011

                            95       .010

A8 My employer allocates    94       .012
space for employees'
religious practices

A9 My employer allows       94       .041      Weak Negative
religious attire at work

                            94       .004

A6 My employer provides     93       .012
meal options for religious
observance at company
events

Note. * Correlation is significant at the .05 level (2-tailed)

** Correlation is significant at the .01 level (2-tailed).

TABLE 5.2

Correlation between Informal Religion (B) and Creativity (D)

                                             Pearson       df=
Informal Religion               Creativity   Correlation   N-2

B5 My employer accommodates
martial arts exercises such                  -.204 *       93
as tai chi, judo and karate

B7 My employer has appointed
a committee dedicated to the                 -.209 *       94
spiritual well-being of
employees

B3 My employer accommodates                  -.210 *       93
new age religious practices

B4 My employer uses fengshui    D11 feel
techniques to enhance my work   at peace     -.246 *       92
space                           in my
                                workplace

B8 My employer integrates
spiritual needs and                          -.247 *       94
well-being of employees into
its strategic plan

B1 My employer allows
employees to organize yoga                   -.284 **      92
classes

B9 My employer conducts         D10 My
surveys on spiritual            employer     -.233 *       94
wellness at the workplace       makes
                                provision
                                for
                                continuous
                                learning

B4 My employer uses fengshui
techniques to enhance my work                -.234 *       92
space

B9 My employer conducts         D11 My
surveys on spiritual            employer     -.238 *       94
wellness at the workplace       gives
                                employees
                                time off
                                each week
                                to reflect

B2 My employer organizes yoga   D11 feel
classes for employees           at peace     -.358 **      94
                                in my
                                workplace

                                Sig.
Informal Religion               (2-tailed)   Strength

B5 My employer accommodates
martial arts exercises such     0.048
as tai chi, judo and karate

B7 My employer has appointed
a committee dedicated to the    0.041
spiritual well-being of
employees

B3 My employer accommodates     0.041
new age religious practices

B4 My employer uses fengshui
techniques to enhance my work   0.017
space

B8 My employer integrates
spiritual needs and             0.015        Weak Negative
well-being of employees into
its strategic plan

B1 My employer allows
employees to organize yoga      0.006
classes

B9 My employer conducts
surveys on spiritual            0.022
wellness at the workplace

B4 My employer uses fengshui
techniques to enhance my work   0.023
space

B9 My employer conducts
surveys on spiritual            0.019
wellness at the workplace

B2 My employer organizes yoga
classes for employees           .000         Moderate
                                             Negative

Note. * Correlation is significant at the .05 level (2-tailed).

** Correlation is significant at the .01 level (2-tailed).

TABLE 6

Summary of Findings of Research Issues

Research Issue                  Hypothesis

1. What are the practices to    The more significant spirituality
accommodate employee            practices are provisions
spirituality needs among        for Creativity (H1.1) and
employers?                      Community Service (H1.2).

2. Is there a difference in     H2: There is a significant
spirituality practices by       difference in spirituality
industries?                     practices by industries.

3. Is there a difference in     H3: There is a significant
the spirituality practices by   difference in spirituality
number of employees in an       practices by number of
organization?                   employees in an organization.

4. Is there a correlation       There is a positive relationship
between religion and            between Formal Religion
creativity at the workplace?    and Creativity (H4) and
                                between Informal Religion and
                                Creativity (H5).

Research Issue                  Findings

1. What are the practices to    Among the 19 significant spirituality
accommodate employee            practices, seven were Creativity, five
spirituality needs among        Community Service, three Formal
employers?                      Religion and two Informal Religion.
                                Employers provide significantly more
                                accommodations for Creativity and
                                Community Service than Formal Religion
                                and Informal Religion. H1.1 and H1.2
                                are supported.

2. Is there a difference in     H2 is supported. Services provide
spirituality practices by       significantly more accommodation for
industries?                     work-life balance (B6), physical
                                wellness surveys (B10), mental
                                wellness surveys (B11) and meaningful
                                job (B13). Trade/ Goods-Producing/Other
                                provide significantly more
                                accommodation for discussion on
                                religion (A11).

3. Is there a difference in     H3 is supported. There is a significant
the spirituality practices by   difference between Small/Medium and
number of employees in an       Large Firms in allowing employees to
organization?                   practice religion at workplace (A7),
                                with Small/Medium firms affording a
                                significantly higher level of
                                accommodation.

4. Is there a correlation       Hypothesis H4 is partly supported:
between religion and            Weak Positive to Weak Negative
creativity at the workplace?    relationships between variables of
                                Formal Religion and Creativity.
                                Hypothesis H5 is not supported: Weak
                                Negative to Moderate Weak Negative
                                between variables of Informal

APPENDIX 1

Organizational Practices of Spirituality

                              Organizational
                                  Culture

Authors                       Organizational      Employer
Employee
                                  Culture       Responsibility
Responsibility

1. Altaf & Awan (2011)               X               X
2. Corner (2009)                     X
3. Cullen (2003)
4. Gardner (2007)
5. Gotsis & Kortezi (2008)
6. Groen(2001)                       X                X
7. Harrington, Preziosi, &           X
   Gooden (2001)
8. Krahnke & Hoffman (2002)          X
9. Kakabadse (2002)                  X                X
10. Laabs (1995)
11. Lips-Wiersma, Lund, &
    Fornaciari (2009)
12. Marques, Dhiman, &               X                X
    King (2007)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)            X
14. Portner, Kraft, &
    Claycomb (2003)
15. Petchsawang & Duchon             X                X
    (2009)
16. Sheep (2006)                     X
17. Thompson & MacNeil               X
    (2006)
18. Turner (1999)                    X
19. Steele & Bullock (2009)          X
20. Badrinarayan &                   X
    Madhavaram (2008)
Number of Authors                   14                4
Percentage of Authors               70%              20%

                              Types of Spirituality Accommodations

Authors                        Social      Meditation   Education
                              Activities

1. Altaf & Awan (2011)                                      X
2. Corner (2009)                                            X
3. Cullen (2003)                  X                         X
4. Gardner (2007)                 X            X
5. Gotsis & Kortezi (2008)        X
6. Groen(2001)                    X            X
7. Harrington, Preziosi, &        X            X            X
   Gooden (2001)
8. Krahnke & Hoffman (2002)                                 X
9. Kakabadse (2002)               X                         X
10. Laabs (1995)                  X            X
11. Lips-Wiersma, Lund, &
    Fornaciari (2009)
12. Marques, Dhiman, &                         X
    King (2007)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)                      X
14. Portner, Kraft, &             X
    Claycomb (2003)
15. Petchsawang & Duchon          X            X            X
    (2009)
16. Sheep (2006)                  X
17. Thompson & MacNeil                         X
    (2006)
18. Turner (1999)                 X            X
19. Steele & Bullock (2009)       X                         X
20. Badrinarayan &                X            X            X
    Madhavaram (2008)
Number of Authors                 13           10           9
Percentage of Authors            65%          50%          45%

Authors                       Physical    Mental     Yoga    Employee
                              Wellness    Wellness           Responsi-
                                         bility

1. Altaf & Awan (2011)                                       X
2. Corner (2009)                                      X
3. Cullen (2003)
4. Gardner (2007)
5. Gotsis & Kortezi (2008)        X          X
6. Groen(2001)
7. Harrington, Preziosi, &        X
   Gooden (2001)
8. Krahnke & Hoffman (2002)
9. Kakabadse (2002)
10. Laabs (1995)
11. Lips-Wiersma, Lund, &                                     X
    Fornaciari (2009)
12. Marques, Dhiman, &            X
    King (2007)
13. Moore & Casper (2006)         X
14. Portner, Kraft, &             X          X
    Claycomb (2003)
15. Petchsawang & Duchon
    (2009)
16. Sheep (2006)
17. Thompson & MacNeil
   (2006)
18. Turner (1999)                 X          X
19. Steele & Bullock (2009)
20. Badrinarayan &                X          X
    Madhavaram (2008)
Number of Authors                 7          4        1     2
Percentage of Authors            35%        20%       5%    10%

APPENDIX 2

Spirituality Accommodations among 40 Best Employers in Canada

                                                   Vertical
                                                 Connectedness

Organization                        Industry        Formal

1. JetBlue                           Airline
2. Ford                            Automobile          X
3. Cadillac Fairview Corp. Ltd.    Automobile
4. British Columbia Automobile     Automobile
   Association
5. Canadian Western Bank             Banking
6. Patagonia                        Clothing
7. Accenture                       Consulting
8. PCL Constructors Inc.           Engineering
9. Edward Jones                      Finance
10. Island Savings Credit Union      Finance
11. The World Bank                   Finance           X
12. ATB Financial                    Finance
13. Canadian Apartment
Properties Real Estate               Finance
Investment T rust
14. General Mills                     Food             X
15. Keg Restaurants Ltd.              Food
16. McDonald's Restaurants            Food
of Canada Ltd
17. Tyson Foods Inc.                  Food             X
18. Nike                            Footwear           X
19. Timberland                      Footwear
20. Kaiser Permanente              Health Care
21. Marriott                          Hotel
22. Novotel Canada                    Hotel
23. Chubb Insurance Co.             Insurance
of Canada
24. Allstate Insurance Co.          Insurance
    of Canada
25. The Co-operators                Insurance
26. Google                             IT              X
27. Microsoft                          IT              X
28. Apple                              IT              X
29. Twitter                            IT
30. Xerox                              IT              X
31. Yahoo                              IT              X
32. Epic Systems                   IT Software
33. SAS                            IT Software
34. MNP LLP                           Legal
35. Bennett Jones LLP                 Legal
36. Genentech                        Medical           X
37. GlaxoSmithKline Inc.             Medical
38. BC Biomedical                    Medical
    Laboratories Ltd.
39. Sounds True                    Publishing          X
40. Orbitz.com                       T ravel           X
Number of Best Employers                              12
Percentage of Best Employers                          33%

                                                  Inter
                                              Connectedness

                                                Community
Organization                       Informal      Service

1. JetBlue
2. Ford
3. Cadillac Fairview Corp. Ltd.                     X
4. British Columbia Automobile                      X
   Association
5. Canadian Western Bank                            X
6. Patagonia                          X
7. Accenture
8. PCL Constructors Inc.                            X
9. Edward Jones
10. Island Savings Credit Union                     X
11. The World Bank                    X
12. ATB Financial                                   X
13. Canadian Apartment
Properties Real Estate                              X
Investment T rust
14. General Mills
15. Keg Restaurants Ltd.                            X
16. McDonald's Restaurants                          X
of Canada Ltd
17. Tyson Foods Inc.
18. Nike                              X
19. Timberland                                      X
20. Kaiser Permanente
21. Marriott                                        X
22. Novotel Canada
23. Chubb Insurance Co.               X             X
of Canada
24. Allstate Insurance Co.
    of Canada
25. The Co-operators                                X
26. Google
27. Microsoft                         X             X
28. Apple                             X
29. Twitter                           X
30. Xerox
31. Yahoo
32. Epic Systems
33. SAS
34. MNP LLP                                         X
35. Bennett Jones LLP                               X
36. Genentech
37. GlaxoSmithKline Inc.                            X
38. BC Biomedical                     X             X
    Laboratories Ltd.
39. Sounds True                       X
40. Orbitz.com                        X
Number of Best Employers              9            18
Percentage of Best Employers         25%           45%

                                            Inner
                                         Connectedness

Organization                        Creativity     Wellness

1. JetBlue                               X            X
2. Ford
3. Cadillac Fairview Corp. Ltd.          X
4. British Columbia Automobile           X
   Association
5. Canadian Western Bank                 X            X
6. Patagonia
7. Accenture                             X            X
8. PCL Constructors Inc.                 X
9. Edward Jones                          X
10. Island Savings Credit Union          X
11. The World Bank                       X
12. ATB Financial                                     X
13. Canadian Apartment
Properties Real Estate                   X
Investment T rust
14. General Mills                        X            X
15. Keg Restaurants Ltd.
16. McDonald's Restaurants               X
of Canada Ltd
17. Tyson Foods Inc.
18. Nike
19. Timberland
20. Kaiser Permanente                                 X
21. Marriott
22. Novotel Canada                       X
23. Chubb Insurance Co.                  X            X
of Canada
24. Allstate Insurance Co.               X
    of Canada
25. The Co-operators                     X            X
26. Google                               X            X
27. Microsoft                            X            X
28. Apple
29. Twitter                                           X
30. Xerox
31. Yahoo
32. Epic Systems                         X            X
33. SAS                                               X
34. MNP LLP                              X            X
35. Bennett Jones LLP                    X
36. Genentech                                         X
37. GlaxoSmithKline Inc.                 X            X
38. BC Biomedical                                     X
    Laboratories Ltd.
39. Sounds True
40. Orbitz.com
Number of Best Employers                22            17
Percentage of Best Employers            55%          43%

Source. "Canada's Best Employers 2015" (CB Staff, 2014); "Canada's
Top 100 Employers make their workplaces exceptional" (Jermyn,
2014); "Canada's 50 best employers" (Macleans.ca, 2012);
"Spirituality in the Workplace" (Guillory, 2011); "Chicago tech
firms give workers 'sacred spaces' for quiet reflection" (Kalsnes,
2014).

APPENDIX 3

Mean Values of One-Sample t-test

                                                Std.      Std. Error
Item                                   Mean   Deviation      Mean

C1 Giving back to the community        4.06     0.90         0.09
is important to me

C3 I feel proud to be associated       3.88     0.90         0.09
with an ethical employer

A1 My religion is an important         3.86     1.45         0.14
part of my life

C13 My employer participates           3.84     1.00         0.10
in recycling

C4 My employer encourages              3.78     1.01         0.10
employees to make ethical
business decisions

A2 My religion is important to my      3.73     1.46         0.15
overall sense of identity

B13 I have a meaningful job            3.67     0.98         0.10

C5 My employer has a clearly           3.65     1.08         0.11
defined ethical policy

D10 My employer makes provision        3.53     1.14         0.12
for continuous learning

D1 I feel at peace in my workplace     3.53     0.98         0.10

C14 My employer participates in        3.51     1.08         0.11
green initiatives

D7 My employer consults employees      3.48     1.07         0.11
on how to improve customer service

D8 My employer consults employees      3.46     1.04         0.10
on how to improve work productivity

D21 work in a creative environment     3.41     1.23         0.12

C12 My employer practises              3.36     1.16         0.12
environmental conservation

D4 My employer encourages trial and    3.30     1.10         0.11
error in developing innovative ideas

A10 My employer approves application   3.29     1.00         0.10
for leave to observe religious
holidays

B6 My employer makes provision for     3.28     1.23         0.12
work life balance

D6 My employer rewards creativity      3.26     1.12         0.11

C10 My employer encourages             3.20     1.18         0.12
employees to volunteer for community
service

All My employer allows discussion      3.18     1.00         0.10
on religion at the workplace

C6 My employer organizes training      3.15     1.20         0.12
workshops on ethics

A9 My employer allows the wearing      3.13     1.15         0.12
of religious attire at work

C8 My employer recognizes employees    3.13     1.11         0.11
who are actively involved in
community service

C9 My employer assigns part of its     3.11     1.10         0.11
annual budget to corporate social
responsibility projects

C15 My employer has a program to       3.11     1.13         0.11
reduce its carbon footprint

D9 My employer requires employees      3.11     1.14         0.11
to attend personal development
seminars

A7 My employer allows me to            3.09     1.13         0.11
practice my religion at work

D3 My creativity is not                3.03     1.08         0.11
appreciated at work

D5 My workplace decor stimulates       3.01     1.12         0.11
creativity

C7 My employer organizes sexual        2.95     1.06         0.11
harassment education workshops

D12 My employer allocates a space      2.92     1.13         0.11
for relaxation

A4 I pray at my workplace              2.88     1.42         0.14

D13 My employer allocates a space      2.84     1.28         0.13
for recreation

A12 My employer has a clearly          2.76     1.17         0.12
defined diversity policy for
religious beliefs

B10 My employer conducts surveys on    2.72     1.19         0.12
physical wellness at the workplace

D14 My employer allocates a space      2.70     1.15         0.12
for creativity

B11 My employer conducts surveys on    2.60     1.15         0.12
mental wellness at the workplace

A8 My employer allocates space for     2.56     1.06         0.11
employees' religious practices

A5 I meditate at my workplace          2.55     1.30         0.13

D11 My employer gives employees        2.52     1.18         0.12
time off each week to reflect

C11 My employer has a community        2.46     1.11         0.11
service leave program

B1 My employer allows employees to     2.41     0.99         0.10
organize yoga classes

B3 My employer accommodates new        2.33     0.99         0.10
age religious practices

A6 My employer provides meal           2.23     1.11         0.11
options for religious observance at
company events

B7 My employer has appointed a         2.16     1.13         0.11
committee dedicated to the
spiritual well-being of employees

B8 My employer integrates spiritual    2.11     1.04         0.10
needs and well-being of employees
into its strategic plan

B2 My employer organizes yoga          2.07     1.04         0.10
classes for employees

B5 My employer accommodates martial    2 00     0 98         0 10
arts exercises such as tai chi,
judo and karate

B9 My employer conducts surveys on     1.92     1.00         0.10
spiritual wellness at the workplace

B4 My employer uses fengshui           1.82     0.94         0.10
techniques to enhance my work space

Note. Items and scores in italics represent not significant.
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Article Details
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Author:Loo, Mark Kam Loon
Publication:Journal of Psychology and Theology
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1CANA
Date:Sep 22, 2017
Words:13349
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