Music and productivity - Deepstash

deepstash

Beta

deepstash

Beta

Does music help us work better? It depends

Music and productivity

Music and productivity

During World War II, the BBC broadcasted upbeat music in factories twice a day to see if it might step up the pace of work and get the military what they needed. It worked. One report stated that the output at a factory increased by 12,5-15%.

Since then, music has started to play an important role in productivity.

262 SAVES


This is a professional note extracted from an online article.

Read more efficiently

Save what inspires you

Remember anything

IDEA EXTRACTED FROM:

Does music help us work better? It depends

Does music help us work better? It depends

https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20200317-does-music-help-us-work-it-depends

bbc.com

6

Key Ideas

Music and motivation

Playing the right music in the office motivates staff.

When you're concentrating, you'll want calmer, more relaxing music. At the end of the day, when you're feeling tired, you'll desire more upbeat music.

The benefits of music

There are two possible ways music might be beneficial while working:

  • It makes us feel good, therefore helping us to work through otherwise tedious tasks.
  • It makes us smarter. The Mozart effect is a well-known example - that listening to a piano sonata composed by a genius can make you perform better.

Some famous composers' work has better cognitive benefits than others. Studies show that Mozart's sonata increased "alpha band" brain waves, which is linked to memory, cognition, and problem-solving.

Altering our mood

The "activation theory" is the idea is that people need a certain amount of mental arousal to function effectively.

One 1995 study found that when workers at a large retail organization were allowed to listen to personal stereos for one month, regardless of their choice of music, their performance improved significantly. The reason for improvements in productivity was how relaxed they felt.

Skewed perception

Some scientists think that music doesn't help us at all. It's possible that we view the ability to listen to music as a privilege from our employers, and convincing ourselves that we are working harder in turn.

In some contexts, music is actively detrimental, such as problem-solving, while listening to more cognitively demanding music, like jazz. One study found students performed worse in reading-comprehension and maths scores when they did them to music.

Keeping the context in mind

One meta-analysis concluded that background music disturbs the reading process and has a small harmful effect on memory, but has a positive impact on emotional reactions and improves achievements in sports.

Music might be beneficial in the workplace, depending on the type of work, the genre of music, your control over the music, and your personality.

EXPLORE MORE AROUND THESE TOPICS:

SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

How the brain processes music

Music is processed in different ways:

  • one part of our brain decodes pitch and tempo
  • other parts tap into memory and emotion
  • if you are playing an instrument, the ...
Music, dementia, and rehabilitation

Some studies show that music can help improve movement in patients who have Parkinson’s disease, or people who have lost mobility or battle with language due to a stroke.

In one study, in particular, Alzheimer’s patients seem to maintain the ability to recognize music.

Music is good for you

Listening to music engages a huge network throughout the brain because music has so many components to it. It keeps your brain fit and healthy.

Music is also very therapeutic. It can lift your mood and help you to relax.

Happy/sad music

Our brains respond differently to happy or sad music.

One study revealed that participants interpreted a neutral expression as happy or sad to match the tone of the music they heard. 

Ambient noise can improve creativity

A moderate noise level is ideal to improve our creativity. It increases the processing difficulty which stimulates abstract processing, leading to higher creativity. 
High noise levels impair our creative thinking because we feel overwhelmed and struggle to process information properly.

Music and personality

Different genres correspond to our personality. For instance:

  • Blues and Jazz fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle and at ease
  • Classical music fans have high self-esteem, are creative, introvert and at ease
  • Opera fans have high self-esteem, are creative and gentle
  • Rock/heavy metal fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard-working, not outgoing, gentle, and at ease

4 more ideas

Music between tasks could boost productivity

Although there may be detrimental effects of listening to music while working, listening to music in between tasks can boost your mental performance and the ability to concentrate on a task ...

Music familiarity is best for focus

Certain regions in our brain—which evoke strong emotions and improve concentration—are more active when we listen to familiar rather than unfamiliar music.

Plus, when we listen to unfamiliar music we’re more likely to lose focus, while adjusting to the new sound.

Music and repetitive tasks

Music can make repetitive tasks more pleasurable and increase your concentration on the task.

For example, one study discovered that music could improve the performance of surgeons who take on repetitive nonsurgical laboratory tasks.

5 more ideas