Upbeat music makes employees more cooperative, according to researchers

20 December 2017
Employees’ productivity and efficiency in the office is an important issue for managers. They are constantly working on strategies that would enable their employees to be high-performing. However, a simple way of achieving it has been hiding in plain sight, and it involves playing upbeat office music.

Upbeat music has positive effects on employees
Research published in the Journal of Organizational Behavior studied music as an environmental aspect of professional workplaces and the influence it has on the employees. The conclusion of this research was that upbeat, happy music has positive effects on the cooperation and productivity among the employees.

Similar research, published by the Harvard Business Review, concludes that “happy music produces positive effects” on employees working in teams. Teams that were listening to upbeat music before performing a task proved to be more likely to cooperate, less self-interested and invested in the greater good of the group.

These conclusions were made based on the results of an experiment with two groups. The first group listened to a loop of songs with warmth and happy rhythms. The samples included:
· “Walking on Sunshine” by Katrina and The Waves;
· “Happy Days” by Pratt and McClain;
· “Yellow Submarine” by The Beatles;
· “Brown-Eyed Girl” by Van Morrison.

The second group listened to music that was distinctly different to the former. The loop consisted of “unhappy” music with arrhythmic song structures and screamed lyrics. The samples included:
· “Smokahontas,” by Attack Attack!;
· “You Ain’t No Family,” by iwrestledabearonce.

In the following stage of the experiment, the groups were given tokens. They could keep all the tokens, or deposit some to a team fund, and if they deposited the tokens to the team fund, their contributions would be multiplied by one and a half. The choice put emphasis on the importance of public good and cooperation. Unsurprisingly, the participants of the first group were more likely to share the tokens with their group.

Furthermore, the researchers tested one more group, which did not listen to music at all. This group, and the one that listened to “unhappy” music, proved to be less likely to share their tokens. The “happy” music induced cooperation and consequently efficiency within the team, and in the work space.

Are you ready to enhance the productivity of your employees with music?
Overhead music does not have an effect only on a business’ customers, it can affect the employees as well. In fact, upbeat overhead music in the workspace can help you enhance the efficiency straight at the core of your business. Researcher Kevin Kniffin agrees, as written in the Harvard Business Review, “managers should be more attentive to the effects that sound may have on their employees, not just their customers.”

Eos was created with a single mission: to create the perfect music service for business environments. Its music curators employ multiple scientific disciplines, including demography and psychology, combined with decades of experience in the industry and a deep love of music, to craft channels perfectly suited for a wide variety of business environments. If you think your business might be enhanced by having the right music and sound system, we’d love to speak with you.
Conrad Blake, AMTC Account Manager

About Conrad
Conrad has been an Account Manager with AMTC since 2014. A graduate of University of Central Florida, Conrad developed his love of music in middle school, playing guitar in what started as a neighborhood garage band. Gabby’s Love stayed together through high school and college and helped cover tuition. When Conrad isn’t working with AMTC major accounts to achieve just the right sound, he’s an expert-level player of MMO games, an avid fan of UCF Knights football and basketball, and a cuddler with his cat Bishop.