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How music can help make work more enjoyable (and productive)

Source | Linkedin : By Paul Wilson

Much of the discussion about music at work focuses on who likes to listen to music when they work vs who doesn’t. But what if music could play a much richer role at work beyond just acting as a means to block out your colleagues? And what if music could provide a more enjoyable way to improve productivity beyond spreadsheets and processes. Here are a few thoughts to put and song in your step and more music in your work life.

1) Use music to make an entrance

Global summits are not the most exciting gigs in the world often run in windowless conference rooms near large airports. You also have the challenge of not only covering a large amount of content but also introducing a variety of different speakers and creating some excitement to fend off the jet lag.

So rather than get people to share an ‘amusing’ fact to introduce themselves at a global conference people were asked to choose their intro music. This allowed people to express their personality and have a bit of fun.  I still remember Piotr Gleinert our Global media client – a 6 foot+ Pole with a buzz cut who is built like a nuclear shelter – walking onstage to the Imperial March, Darth Vader’s theme from Star Wars…. He then burst into a broad smile and reassured people that he wasn’t really that scary. (But it did help getting markets to reply to his emails)

2) Welcoming people and starting large meetings on time

If you have ever run a meeting or workshop that involves more than 10 people you will have experienced the issue of how to signal the start of a session. Not only do you have to get everyone in the room, but you have to get them sitting down… and stop talking. If you rely on shouting you will end up losing your voice over the course of the day and ringing a bell makes it feel too much like school.

A simpler solution is to play music and to turn it off when you want to signal to begin. Music not only helps welcome people to your session but turning it off gives people a clear signal that things are about to begin. You can also match the type of music to the session you are running. (It’s amazing how carols can get you thinking about Christmas even in August)

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