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How Background Noise Affects Your Productivity

By Roz, September 3, 2015
background noise

No matter where you work, there are usually a variety of interruptions throughout the workday. One thing that may or may not be helpful is all of the background noise. In some cases, having noise throughout the workplace is beneficial, while other times, it proves to be a hindrance.


There is no doubt about it, background noise definitely effects the work environment, but when it comes to your company, is that a good thing or a bad thing? Well, it depends greatly on the noise. For instance, if you work in a factory and all you hear is machinery all day, this could become quite obnoxious. However, you end up getting used to noises that are ongoing on a daily basis. If you were trying to write out paperwork during such loud noises, then you may be completely distracted.


Identifying the noise in your workplace is step one. Decide on whether or not it’s reasonable to expect workers to complete their tasks with the daily ongoing noise in the building. If it’s not, start troubleshooting ways you can eliminate unwanted sound.


Allowing Music in the Workplace. 

It has been said that in places such as office building, doctors offices, and other more laid back atmospheres, gentle music can actually increase the productivity. Soothing sounds such as music tend to calm people and in office settings, the calm sounds could increase morale and productivity.

Music tends to break up the monotony of repetitive daily tasks. It takes the focus off of the task at hand without being so distracting that it is too difficult to work. If music cannot be played over speakers for everyone, consider allowing employees to wear earbuds. This is especially great for office workers such as programmers, writers and others who sit at a desk all day.


Find a good medium for the work environment. 

If you already work in a place where loud noises are frequent, music could help here as well. For example, you may notice that even with the loud music being played often at auto shops, you can hear the sound of engines, cars and machinery. The music will only make the employees happier and help to drown out some of the obnoxious noises.

However, not all workers enjoy, or can properly function, with too much background noise around, and that includes music. Before adding to the noise in the room, ask your employees if they’d rather have some music playing in the background, or if they’d rather have the natural ambiance. You can consider asking whether your team would benefit from quiet and designated talking areas.

The first and only consideration in deciding what noise is good noise and what noise is unnecessary noise is the productivity of your employees. Ask for opinions, observe the surroundings, and make decisions on what would best benefit the vast majority of your workers.

To find out more ways in which your company can improve its productivity contact us!

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