It probably causes the most arguments in any office but yes, music should be played in the office. If you do play music in the office, it is more than likely you will be breaking copyright law unless you have a PRS licence. PRS Licence but offices need the Sonos, need the Spotify, need the radio.
Why? when music is a distraction, and as referenced it causes arguments. Commercial radio with its rubbish and repetitive ads and short playlists can begin to grate. One person wants a Rock station on, one prefers R’n’B, personally I am a BBC 6 Music or Radio 4 fan, and one always want the music turned off. However music can also create a calming atmosphere, people to talk to each other about the music, songs can evoke emotions, happiness, sadness, remind you of someone or something, a happy time.
And music in the office opens people’s ears to new sounds, new artists and old artists. Classic songs which the younger staff members have never heard before, they love them and become fans. The biggest Led Zeppelin fan in my current office is a recent convert after hearing and loving ‘The Song Remains The Same’ she has now downloaded more Zeppelin tracks to the office Spotify account and it is joyous to see her discover these sounds. ( I am embarrassed to become a secret Taylor Swift fan – why are her songs so bloody catchy!). I love the debates we have about the tracks which pop up on the randomness of a Spotify play list. And when a truly terrible song comes on trying to figure out who put it on there. And who puts up the expletive stuff? Can be a little awkward when a client happens to be in.
Music makes people emotionally engaged, sometimes angry, mostly happy. I think emotionally engaged people are more productive.
One thing I feel I must share…. there is no such thing as good music or bad music. There is music you love and music you don’t. One person’s Cliff Richard is another person’s Stormzy!