Spirituality: The Bridge Between Engagement and Resistance in the Workplace

Spirituality: The Bridge Between Engagement and Resistance in the Workplace

Dianne Ford Lawton (Troy University, Troy, AL, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/IJAVET.2017100103

Abstract

This theoretical article explores the role spirituality plays in engagement and resistance in the workplace. These qualities exist at the opposite ends of the continuum in adult education in the workplace: engagement in learning and resistance to adult learning. By employing Mezirow's learning framework, the researcher illustrates how spirituality in the workplace can provide the bridge between these two forces. Various texts have been consulted to examine the effects of various working conditions on employee productiveness and happiness which is assumed to increase employee efficiency. The conclusion is increasing employee engagement leads to less resistance to learning.
Article Preview

Purpose Of The Study

The purpose of this theoretical article is to explore the role spirituality plays in adult learning in the workplace. The theoretical framework for the study is transformative learning, a framework developed by Mezirow (1997) that impels adults to understand the world in ways that take into account their unique experiences (Erickson, 2007). Mezirow (1997) purports that the change that results from transformative learning is a result of the frames of reference which define the world of adults. These frames of reference include “associations, concepts, values, feelings, [and] conditioned responses” (Mezirow, p. 5), which provide the structure that adults need to understand their experiences (Mezirow, 1997).

At opposite ends of the continuum in adult education in the workplace are engagement in adult learning and resistance to adult learning. This paper addresses the reasons adults are either engaged in learning in the workplace, or whether they find themselves resisting engagement in workplace learning. By employing Mezirow’s transformative learning framework, the researcher illustrates how spirituality in the workplace can provide the bridge between these forces.

Complete Article List

Search this Journal:
Reset
Open Access Articles: Forthcoming
Volume 10: 4 Issues (2019): Forthcoming, Available for Pre-Order
Volume 9: 4 Issues (2018): 2 Released, 2 Forthcoming
Volume 8: 4 Issues (2017)
Volume 7: 4 Issues (2016)
Volume 6: 4 Issues (2015)
Volume 5: 4 Issues (2014)
Volume 4: 4 Issues (2013)
Volume 3: 4 Issues (2012)
Volume 2: 4 Issues (2011)
Volume 1: 4 Issues (2010)
View Complete Journal Contents Listing