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The Sound of Music


Written By: Joanie Ogg CTC, MCC



Do you like to listen to music while you work? I love to! Isn’t it amazing how music can so immediately change our mood and either put us at piece or rev us up if that is what the task calls for? So often, I forget to turn it on and just go about my workday with the hum of my fingers tapping the keyboard. Then suddenly I have this realization that something is missing. I need the sound of music!


I got to thinking if there might be some real factual research or information that substantiated my claim to need music to excel at a task? Tom thinks I am a bit music obsessed because I have to have it on to complete most anything I set out to do. I even have a waterproof shuffle I can use to listen to music when I swim laps. I have to have music to run, do yard work, and the list goes on. So, I find I am not alone. I think this is interesting and I hope you do too.


Music = More Productivity

It is true that, research proves music adds to a person’s productivity. Workers in one test were provided with headsets so they could listen to music while they worked and the rest of the workers in the project went about doing their work without the sound of music. The research proved that there was more then a 10% increase in work productivity in those listening to music. I would have thought it might be even more.


Music Genres Make a Difference

Does it matter what kind of music we listen to while we work? It is unlikely that all kinds of music would bring about the same level of work productivity. If our goal is to increase our concentration then findings show music that provides a light melody will help get us in the right zone. Apparently, it helps up to focus. I suspect if we listened to rap, rock and or heavy metal would not allow us to concentrate but instead would have us listening to lyrics instead of honing in our work project.


The Mozart Effect

On the other hand, music with an upbeat rhythm is known to release stress hormone levels. It is known as the “Mozart effect”. The story goes that a group of students asked to take some math tests while they listened to classical music showed their stress levels dropped dramatically and did really well on the tests versus the other testers. Now, I know why I did so badly in math. I never had the opportunity to listen to classical music while Sister Ruth administered her weekly “test from hell”.


Environment Impacts Behavior

The environment you create impacts the behavior you are likely to get. When you are trying to decide what sounds to use to create your productive workday, test and try different sounds till you get the perfect harmony. The ability to do consistently great work is what’s at stake, so think before you press play.