Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Unpopular Opinion: Why Listening to Music at Work is the Worst

via edited by me

It's about to get really uncomfortable around here today. Why? Because I'm sharing what I'd consider an unpopular opinion. (Click here for my thoughts on brunch.) The subject of today's diatribe: listening to music at work.

Nothing makes me angrier (well that's a lie because rule-breakers generally make my blood boil) than someone with earbuds jammed into their ears sitting at their desk working. Why?

-one- This leaves you vulnerable.
If you're not aware of your surroundings at all times you can't react appropriately. Say you hear a large group of people walking towards your area, or, worse, you hear some sort of panic or emergency that's occurring. By being tuned out you're leaving yourself open to surprises or even attacks.

-two- It makes you look disengaged.
A coworker with earbuds constantly in (or headphones constantly on) looks disengaged and thus doesn't give the appearance of being a team player. If all you do is walk in, boot up your computer and shove your earbuds in, it doesn't go a long way into building relationships with your coworkers. Which brings me to my next reason listening to music at work is the worst...

-three- It discourages conversation.
Listen, conversation is the lifeblood of business. To form and build relationships you must have conversations. Constantly appearing that you're unwelcome to conversational advances can really wear on your coworkers. It discourages friendly camaraderie and rapport that makes working

-four- It is distracting.
I, for one, would love to sit at my desk and listen to the Hamilton soundtrack but I can't. Why? Because the music distracts me from my work. I'd much rather harmonize with the Schuyler Sisters than send an email so I find myself absorbed into the and not into my job. Then I start to make mistakes. It's way too distracting to listen to music at work.

Do you agree or disagree?


  1. Disagree.
    This is cyberbu//ying.

  2. I usually only listen to music on Friday afternoons when I'm doing brainless activities like re-sizing photos or cleaning out my email!

  3. I used to listen to my podcasts at work with one earbud so no one could sneak up on me. Now, I have a different job and have to do less mindless work so don't usually listen anymore. I kinda miss it.


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