Michael Carroll is the author of "Awake at Work" (Shambhala 2004) and "The Mindful Leader" (Shambhala 2007) and over his 28 year business career has held executive positions with such companies as Shearson Lehman/American Express, Simon & Schuster and The Walt Disney Company.
While I was working in corporate settings I was also being trained in meditation, and I found that this was tremendously useful at work. For example, one of the defining elements of livelihood is working with conflict. Work involves all kinds of conflicts with colleagues, competitors, auditors; in a sense engaging conflict is unavoidable at work. From the perspective of mindfulness, we need not see conflict as an intrusion or a problem; nor is it something to be avoided or dismissed. Rather, mindfulness trains the mind to look right into the conflict without anger or resentment or fear, and to work skillfully with conflicts of all kinds in order to bring about wholesome results whenever possible. Mindful leadership is very much about working with conflict in a way that inspires the best in others rather than creating a mess of aggression and resentment.