Keith Williams, of EPICC.

The Lady Chapel in St Albans Abbey is the venue for two major launches simultaneously from 7pm on Wednesday 2nd November. There’s the launch of the book, ‘The Map of Meaning – How to Sustain our Humanity in the World of Work’, by the New Zealand-based authors Dr Marjo Lips-Wiersma and Lani Morris, as well as the official launch of Ecumenical Partnership Initiatives Compassion in Change (EPICC), which is part of Workplace Matters, the St Albans-based ecumenical charity which takes Christian values into the workplace.


Sue Howard, one of EPICC’s consultants and author of the book, ‘The Spirit at Work Phenomenon’, is a student of Dr Lips-Wiersma’s Holistic Development Model. This Model is at the heart of ‘the Map of Meaning’ book and is also key to EPICC’s approach to bringing greater recognition and status to spirituality in the workplace. Sue, who is based in Wheathampstead, said: “EPICC’s emphasis is on human care within organisational strategy and culture.  We can help to develop the intellectual, emotional and spiritual intelligence of leaders to support the emergence of caring economics and a sense of ‘thriving’ more than ‘surviving’.


“Our approach focuses on taking a systemic view around two aspects: growing and developing an organisation and its people together, as well as creating an environment that draws out underlying wisdom and releases energy.”


EPICC offers:

  • Action Research – to explore how to change working life for the better
  • Development – of projects to support organisational and individual transformation
  • Mentoring Support – a reassuring ongoing relationship to help maintain progress


“Many people feel that their work isn’t valued and that work itself has lost its value,” commented EPICC consultant, Keith Williams.


“Indeed, there’s a growing tension between material dependency and an inner spiritual desire. With this has come a growing desire to find work where people can be themselves in body, mind and spirit.”


“Research – such as that by Gallup – shows that there’s a strong link between employee engagement, motivation and productivity,” added fellow EPICC consultant, John Kay. “It suggests that financial results will be better, customers will be delighted and staff will thrive where the organisation can find the right balance between two management paradigms: the dominant economic – finance based, short term, zero-sum, process, rational, controlling – and the emerging social paradigm based around relationships, ethics and  inspiration.


“This is exactly where EPICC can make a positive difference to organisations in the private and public sectors,” he said.


Comment: There are a number of initiatives currently being pursued to make the workplace a ’happier’ place to be but the idea behind EPICC is both intriguing and ‘different’. EPICC certainly aims to bring a different perspective to the ‘being valued at work’ issue. As such, it should be congratulated.