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The benefits of music in offices

Music has a profound effect on our lives – it can evoke certain memories, emotions and thoughts and can make us feel happy or sad. It’s frequently been suggested that playing Mozart to an unborn baby could make them smarter.

In a survey of 4,500 people conducted by Totaljobs, it was found that a huge 79 per cent of employees said they would benefit from listening to music at work, however, over one third of employees aren’t allowed to listen to music during the working day.

Interestingly, 61 per cent of people stated that they listened to music at work to boost their productivity and happiness. Though this survey data speaks for itself, we wanted to look more in depth at some of the benefits music can have on employees and their working life.

79% of employees said they would benefit from listening to music at work

Workers that listen to music complete tasks more quickly than those who don’t.

90% of employees would work better while listening to music.

Over 60% say that music at work makes them happier.

Increased Productivity

Science and research has shown that music can boost your productivity, particularly when working on a repetitive task. Working in a noisy office where there’s lots of different noises can reduce your productivity. The sound of phones ringing, background chatter, typing on keyboards, etc. can be distracting. However, music creates one single sound for your mind to focus on, potentially helping you get your mojo back.

According to Dr. Lesiuk, workers that listen to music complete tasks more quickly than those who don’t and can also come up with better ideas. A person that is stressed might make a decision very quickly, whereas someone who’s calmer might be able to take a more logical approach to finding the best solution.

Further research, initially reported by CBS News, states that just under 90 per cent of employees would work better while listening to music, while over 60 per cent say that it makes them happier.

Reduced stress and brighter mood

Listening to music can result in a happier, calmer you. A chemical called dopamine is produced in your body when you listen to a song you really like. This is the chemical that is released when you’ve won something or worked hard to reach a goal and can provide you with a rush of minor euphoria.

It is dopamine that could put you in a better mood at work and make you more productive. Increased dopamine can also improve your alertness and make you feel less tired.

But it isn’t just this chemical that allows music to have an impact on your body. Music can naturally slow your pulse and heart rate, lower your blood pressure and decrease the levels of stress hormones in your body.

Improved concentration

Not only will music drown out the conversations of others in the office, it could make it easier for you to concentrate on your task. According to the survey, 48 per cent of those questioned stated that music was an interruption but it helped them to focus.

If you’re listening to music to improve your concentration, you need to be careful. According to this research, a high level of noise can impair creativity by reducing your brain’s ability to process new information. Instead, a moderate or low level of noise can enhance creativity and allows you to focus on your work. This could make background music a better choice for an office environment.

What is the best office music playlist for productivity?

Listening to the wrong music could be detrimental to your productivity. This is because different types of music engage separate areas of the brain. If the ‘wrong’ area is engaged, it could result in lack of concentration.

According to the survey, the most popular music genres for the workplace are pop/chart and indie music. Interestingly, only 7 per cent of people choose to listen to classical or instrumental music.