The Wellbeing Leadership Series For Health Professionals

wellbeing leadership series

A whole person, whole systems approach for health professionals that improves the wellbeing of individuals, teams, and organizations, and focuses on personal growth and wellbeing, leadership, and organizational transformation.

Wellbeing is often defined as a state of being in balance or alignment (body, mind and spirit). It is also described as being content, connected to purpose, peaceful, energized, in harmony, happy, prosperous and safe. The University of Minnesota’s Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing’s Wellbeing Model includes dimensions that can be equally applied at the individual, organizational, and system level.

A wellbeing approach is one that supports and maximizes human and system capacity and potential. Improving wellbeing in people, communities, organizations and systems is core to our mission at the Bakken Center.

The Wellbeing Leadership Series is a creative blend of programming that includes experiential learning, independent study, and peer learning groups. The program emphasizes practices that are simple, concrete, powerful and inspiring!

Series Objectives: 

Day 1: Developing a Personal Plan for Health and Wellbeing

  • Develop a personal plan for health and wellbeing.
  • Learn the role of mindfulness in enhancing wellbeing and self‐leadership. 
  • Provide an opportunity for participants to form as a cohort and build community. 

Day 2: Advancing Organizational Wellbeing

  • Identify how organizational wellbeing relates to engagement.
  • Discuss frameworks for designing and facilitating organizational wellbeing and change.
  • Identify tools and strategies to design and implement an organizational wellbeing plan. 

Day 3: Deepening Leadership Practices

  • Identify models and strategies for providing wellbeing leadership in healthcare
  • Employ wellbeing leadership tools and practices to facilitate effective collaboration, communication and problem solving in healthcare settings
  • Articulate characteristics of exemplary wellbeing leadership in healthcare settings
  • Identify tools and action plans to strengthen leadership skills and effectiveness in enhancing wellbeing in healthcare settings

Participants of the program have said:

  • "It was fantastic; incredibly well organized; inspirational."
  • "Allowed for intentional reflection on wellbeing, which can be difficult to do in a busy practice. I left with many ideas that can be immediately shared with my team.”
  • “I think to change the culture of wellbeing in healthcare, we need an army to help do this work. I think everyone could take something away from this series."
  • "I really appreciate the facilitators' kindness, energy, commitment & expertise."
  • "The series has balanced theory, thought, and practice just beautifully. The combination of support materials, small group discussion, and presentations are wonderful. We cover so much yet the pace is never rushed."

Wellbeing Leaders in the Healthcare Industry:

  • Understand the value of their own wellbeing, the wellbeing of others, and the impact this has on the organization.
  • Develop and maintain wellbeing practices and leadership skills in the face of complexity and challenge.
  • Evoke innovative thinking and allow answers to merge from diverse perspectives.
  • Take adaptive action that transforms individuals, teams, the organization and the larger community and leads to sustainable practices and results.
  • Energize positive change by making wellbeing contagious!

The Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing (CSH) is now offering digital badges to Wellbeing Leadership Series participants. A digital badge serves as verification of your accomplishment to employers and peers, and it shows that you have obtained the skills and knowledge associated with the course. Learn more here.

Learn more about this series and how to bring it to your organization by contacting Sue Nankivell, director of Business Development and Community Relations, at sue@umn.edu or 612-626-2395.

Retreat Facilitators

Mary Jo Kreitzer, PhD, RN, FAAN

Mary Jo Kreitzer PhD, RN, FAAN is the founder and director of the Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing at the University of Minnesota, where she also serves as a tenured professor in the School of Nursing. Within the School of Nursing, Dr. Kreitzer is the co-lead of the doctorate of nursing practice program in integrative health and healing. She has served as the principal investigator or co-principal investigator of numerous clinical trials focusing on mindfulness meditation with persons with chronic disease including studies focusing on solid organ transplant, cardiovascular disease, chronic insomnia, diabetes, and caregivers of people with Alzheimer’s disease. Current studies include the role of mindfulness in improving human brain-computer interface; the use of social technology to enhance healing and wellbeing; nursing leadership in integrative health and healing; and mindful movement for physical activity and wellbeing in older adults. Dr. Kreitzer regularly presents to practitioner and public audiences as well as at academic and healthcare conferences locally and around the world. She has authored more than 150 publications, and is the co-editor of the text Integrative Nursing published in 2014 by Oxford University Press. The second edition of Integrative Nursing will be published in 2018.


Mariann Johnson

Mariann Johnson is the mindfulness and wellbeing instructor at the Earl E. Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing. Before dedicating her professional life to teaching mindfulness, Mariann Johnson was an accomplished organization development consultant and mediator, having worked extensively with national leaders of Fortune 500 companies, government agencies and nonprofit organizations. Since 2010, she has designed and taught mindfulness programs throughout the United States and consulted on the design of Mindful Leadership and mindfulness at work programs in corporate, professional and academic settings. Mariann has practiced mindfulness mediation for more than 20 years and has studied with national and international leaders in the field. She completed extensive Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) training though the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts, founded by Jon Kabat-Zinn. Her writings on mindful leadership have appeared in the Huffington Post and Mindful Magazine.