The workplace, marketplace or corporate environment is one of the most fertile grounds for chaplaincy. Marketplace ministries have been on the forefront in recent years. Most people spend the majority of their day in the workplace and their fellow employees become their extended family. Not only are there problems and conflicts associated with the work environment but people bring their personal problems, addictions, struggles from home as well.
Workplace ministry provides counseling, educational and advisory services to people in the context of their work life. This involves addressing the needs which derive from both personal and work-related concerns, including marriage and family issues, balancing work and family priorities, chemical addictions and dependency, grief and trauma, financial and legal problems, communication skills, dispute resolution, and other situations involving personal values and business practices. There are also issues involved career transition, layoffs, retirement and transitions into various job levels.
The workplace chaplain is a minister and can provide benefits to the business regarding the physical, emotional, social and even spiritual needs. Workplace chaplaincy demonstrates the company’s interest in the welfare of its employees. It also gives the employees a neutral third person to help understand and provide services not normally available in the workplace or through HR. There can be tremendous pressure in the workplace and a chaplain can be the listening ear that helps not only the individual parties involved but the efficiency and productivity of the business itself. The combination of a neutral third party such as a chaplain coupled with an established program that guarantees confidentiality will have a positive effect on the employees’ morale and the business outcome. Workplace chaplaincy is very cost-effective.
There are significant financial savings and cost benefits in maintaining productive reliable long-term employees. All business owners know the time and expense that must be invested in finding and training replacements in the workplace. Also, long-term employees need a helping hand every now and then to maintain their level of productivity. Having a workplace chaplain is a cost-effective way to do this.
Having a workplace chaplain on-site or on a regular interval will allow the employees to develop a relationship with the chaplain before the employee needs the advice or counsel. Then when a problem arises there is already an established relationship. Workplace chaplaincy reduces turnover, downtime, boost morale, and employees are more cooperative with management, each other and customers.