The Effects of Music at Work
Well, not really a DJ, just play music at work. Either way, it’s cool. Some small studies have shown that babies who were exposed to music in the womb had longer attention spans than expected for children of their age, more cognitive function, and were able to better imitate adult sounds than babies in the “control group”. Like little baby “Rainmen”. If all those qualities carried over to you, and the other adult worker-bees, what spectacular level of productivity could music help your company achieve?
Different types of music can be useful for different situations: classical music seems to help many people study and concentrate, or perform tasks that require creativity. For other people, music is only useful for completing very repetitive tasks such as checking e-mail because it can be distracting. Electronic music (without lyrics) may actually help with verbal synthesis projects such as writing copy because it does not have lyrics to distract the language center in your brain. And you can listen to oldies or familiar music when doing pretty much any task because your brain already knows what is coming, allowing you to concentrate on the work at hand. Music may not work for everyone, however. Allowing the use of headphones in a busy office can help those that prefer not to hear music or even other people’s conversations to concentrate on what he or she needs to do.
One of the most important things to recognize about listening to music at work is that music’s strongest and most important effect on us is it’s ability to improve our mood. A good mood does more for productivity than a whole Beethoven’s Symphony. Think about what kind of music goes with your office (ambient sound, oldies, classical, rainstorms, chakra-alignment, etc.) and ask your employees or co-workers what works best for them to find a soundtrack for productivity, improved office morale, or even defeating a dreaded case of the “Mondays”. How about that? All for the cost of a Spotify membership and some wireless speakers? Sign me up!