, Volume 6, Issue 5, pp 971–985 | Cite as

Mindfulness, Work Climate, and Psychological Need Satisfaction in Employee Well-being

  • Patricia P. Schultz
  • Richard M. RyanEmail author
  • Christopher P. Niemiec
  • Nicole Legate
  • Geoffrey C. Williams


The present study investigated how both mindfulness and managerial autonomy support affect work adjustment. Two hundred and fifty-nine working adults were recruited online, and they were assessed for individual differences in mindfulness and the autonomy-supportive versus controlling style of their management at work. Also assessed were indicators of work-related adjustment, namely, burnout, turnover intention, and absenteeism. Results showed that both autonomy support and mindfulness had direct relations with employee work well-being. Less autonomy-supportive work climates thwarted employee’s basic psychological needs at work, which partially explained the association of lower autonomy support at work and decreased work adjustment. These indirect effects were moderated by mindfulness. Specifically, people higher in mindfulness were less likely to feel need frustration, even in unsupportive managerial environments. Mindfulness thus appears to act as a protective factor in controlling work environments. These results not only highlight mindfulness as a potential pathway to wellness at the workplace, but also speak to the relevance of autonomy support in work environments in promoting employee work well-being.


Mindfulness Work climate Autonomy support Employee well-being Basic psychological needs Self-determination theory 



The authors would like to thank Melissa Sturge-Apple and Dev Crasta from the University of Rochester for their assistance and support with Multiple Imputation methods and Structural Equation Modeling.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patricia P. Schultz
    • 2
  • Richard M. Ryan
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christopher P. Niemiec
    • 2
  • Nicole Legate
    • 3
  • Geoffrey C. Williams
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute for Positive Psychology and EducationAustralian Catholic UniversityStrathfieldAustralia
  2. 2.Department of Clinical and Social Sciences in PsychologyUniversity of RochesterRochesterUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyIllinois Institute of TechnologyChicagoUSA

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