Listening to Music at Work

man using MacBook during daytime
Type: Vocabulary
Originally published on February 11, 2022 and last updated on July 23, 2023

For English learners, the topic of “Listening to Music at Work” holds significant potential for improvement. Incorporating music into the work routine not only enhances language acquisition but also fosters a more engaging and enjoyable learning experience.

This introduction explores how carefully selected tunes can boost motivation, concentration and retention while providing a valuable opportunity to practice listening skills.

Go through the vocabulary below with your students and ask them to try and use this vocabaulry where possible when discussing the different conversation questions.

About Listening to Music at Work

Listening to music, whether it be through speakers or headphones, is quite a common occurrence in the workplace. Manual workers such as builders, plumbers and labourers often listen to the radio throughout the day. Other professions such as programmers, designers and developers are often found working with headphones on listening to their favourite music or music which they claim helps them focus and be more productive.

Even though this type of behaviour seems to be more common nowadays, there are still many people who believe listening to music while working is not only unprofessional, but also has a negative impact on the quality of work produced.

Useful Vocabulary

Try and use the following vocabulary when answering the question. Click to look up the definition in the dictionary

  • likely (adverb)
  • affect (verb)
  • as a result of (phrase)
  • definitely (adverb)
  • take (somebody/something) for granted (phrase)
  • when it comes to (phrase)

Conversation Questions

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  • Should workers be allowed to listen to music whilst working?
  • Do you like listening to music while you are working? Why?
  • What type of music do you prefer to listen to at work, and why does it help you?
  • How does listening to music affect your productivity and concentration at work?
  • How does listening to music affect your productivity and concentration at work?
  • Have you ever had any conflicts with coworkers regarding music choices at work?
  • Do you think listening to music when in the office is rude?
  • Do you believe that listening to music can improve workplace morale and job satisfaction?
  • Are there any specific genres or songs that you find particularly motivating or helpful while working?
  • What professions should definitely not listen to music while working?
  • Is it essential for employers to establish specific guidelines and restrictions on music listening in the workplace?
This conversation topic was prepared by Gregory

Gregory is a qualified TEFL teacher who has been teaching English as a Foreign Language (ESL) for over a decade. He has taught in-person classes in Spain and to English learners around the world online.