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2020 Trend: Music in the Workplace

Posted on Wed, 2019-12-18 10:25 by Phil Muir, Group Consultancy & Design Director

David Brent provides a warning from history to anyone thinking of bringing their guitar to work in the hope of showing off their skills to a captive audience. His rendition of the self-penned ‘Free Love on the Free Love Freeway’ in The Office remains one of the most, uncomfortable to watch, TV moments in my living memory, probably the first time since watching Jaws as a child that I had to watch the screen through my own fingers.

In our many visits to offices across the land of late we’ve seen some surprising things, an inflatable shark for one (Jaws again) but recently I’ve noticed the odd guitar here and there and even a piano within a client’s office. Apart from the obvious beauty of musical instruments, it made me wonder about other benefits and my own experience as a guitar ‘owner’ and being around like-minded others.

Most would admit that playing an instrument is a form of escapism that makes them happy, a way to put some space between yourself and your busy or stressed mind. At home when I need to give my mind a break, I can reach for a guitar and there has been many a time in the design studio where I wished I was able to do the same.

When you are playing an instrument, you need to be in that moment entirely, just a few minutes can reset your mind and make room for other creative ideas to ‘arrive’, as if from nowhere. Most employers would welcome a boost to employee creativity and certainly all employers want to look after their staff’s mental health and wellbeing, So, why not introduce the odd instrument to the office or offer a guitar or piano lesson as a perk?

There is an old joke however ‘What’s the difference between a large pizza and a guitar player? Answer ‘A large pizza can feed a family of four.’ Just remember and don’t give up the day job.

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