Music and workplace aren't two words you would usually put together, but they can have a surprising impact on your work productivity.
When I was a little boy, I would watch various cartoons and kids’ television shows that use to bring a strong grin upon my childish face.
In many of the cartoons, the overly animated world would regularly depict office work as being strenuous and boring.
Parents within cartoons would be seen with baggy eyes, overloading on coffee, and being torturously stuck in a small box (cubicle) daily interacting with a very angry boss.
As I grew up, I noticed that individuals began expressing these similar gestures about their work experiences as this was deemed completely undesirable to me for future working structures.
With a new generation entering the workforce, office environment expectations are beginning to shift for the better.
In today’s work sector, Wrike.com expresses that 70% of office spaces in the USA are considered to implement the open concept.
According to SmallBusiness.Chron, open-plan office spaces allow company workplaces to take advantage of open space rather than the restricting cubicle atmosphere.
Open offices also tend to allow more space for employees to change their environment and congregate through lounges, couches, open kitchen floor structures, etc.
As the open concept has taken over the way companies use their working environment, other implementations such as music have shown great efforts in productivity and overall weakening work stress.
However, this work environment approach does show negative aspects.
Although implementing more togetherness in working settings.
Research on open office spaces has shown to decrease well-being by 32% and productivity by 15%. Can music be a valuable tool in the workplace?
The Value of Music
Music is being constantly used in all aspects of an individual’s life.
From working out in the gym to driving in the car, music is all around us.
While individual weekly music consumption continues to grow from an average of 32 hours a week, music is often used as a form of entertainment or a release from stressful reality.
Music additionally has been proven to be an effective tool to instil a high amount of focus.
The Music in Mood Regulation scale (MMR) focuses on how individuals regulate their mood in correlation to music.
Through a surveyed experiment, the participants have concluded to use music to comfort negative feelings, create a mental diversion while breaking down emotions of sadness and overwhelming emotion.
The overall conclusion of music’s power of substantially decreasing stress additionally shows other powers of music such as boosting physical and mental health and reducing anxiety.
An additional survey conducted by Spotify expressed that 61% of respondents listen to music at work to create a happier work experience.
Furthermore, 90% of workers perform better with music implemented in working sectors, while 88% produce more accurate work when listening to music.
Dr. Anneli Haake Ph.D. writer at the University of Sheffield, UK proclaims that music in office spaces seemed to fulfil a wide range of valuable functions for employees including relief of stress and improving concentration.
Haake details that the most common reason for music in the workplace surrounds the improvement of mood, relaxation, and engagement towards working tasks.
Haake further expresses that control surrounding music choice plays a large part in the implementation of music in offices.
She proclaims that if music is forced into the working environment, music can be an annoying and irritating factor in productivity.
Individual listening to separate music genres seemed to prove much better.
Judging from experience, not all music genres serve as a useful tool to boost workflow in offices.
As I am a strong lover of music, music becomes more of a distraction than a focus tool.
I have tried many different genres to boost productivity such as neo-soul, classical, and jazz.
As the groove melted my focus more heavily, I finally figured out the perfect music genre that not only decreases stress but also makes work much more enjoyable.
Ambiance music is a genre of music that emphasizes tones and atmosphere per traditional structure and rhythm.
Also known as ‘chill-out’ music, the music genre still has the unique music capabilities that I favour, but still creates a calming ‘non-dissected’ atmosphere when I need to focus.
It is important that employees research and educate themselves on the distinct music genres that boost work approach or distract and hinder focus in work environments.
The music genre also depends on the nature of work in the office space.
Classical music has been found most useful with Mathematics, producing 12% more accuracy in solving numerical problems.
Trance dance music has been known to increase output and speed for careers in proofreading.
Proof-readers can complete tasks 20% faster while listening to the electronic musical implication.
As we continue to jump back into a more in-person interactive lifestyle, the value of music may be stronger than one thinks.
The COVID-19 pandemic has left many employees feeling unmotivated, stressed with an increased lack of focus.
Music may be a useful tool for businesses to suggest to employees as they transition back to physical contact in various business environments.
Music develops relationships with many things from the workplace to cancel culture.
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