It's been known for decades that music makes you more productive. People who listen to music at work feel better about the workplace and tasks get done more quickly. People even rate conversations as "more satisfying" when there's background music present.

A recent survey of over a thousand employers and employees, conducted by the workplace music provider CloudSound gauged the respondents' feelings about music in the work place. Among the findings:

  • Fully 78.4% of respondents believed that music increases their productivity
  • That positive effect spans industries but especially strong in IT and data processing.
  • Only 5.1% of respondents think Holiday Songs make them more productive. (Elves?)
  • The most productive genres: Classic Rock (31%), Alternative (27.4%) and Pop (26.1%).

Why does music make you more productive? Turns out that music "programs" your brain to think and feel in specific ways, as I explained in a previous column. To Dr. Victoria Williamson of Goldsmith's College, London)"

"Brain imaging studies have shown that various parts of the brain may be activated by a piece of music."

In other words, you can use specific pieces of music to "program" your brain to think and feel in specific ways.

So, then, which songs are the most likely to make YOU more productive and satisfied at work? That varies according to your individual background and personality, but here are 39 songs that nine of the world's most successful people have in their playlist, in alphabetical order:

  1. "Are You Experienced" - Jimi Hendrix (1)
  2. "Beast of Burden" - The Rolling Stones (9)
  3. "Blowin' in the Wind" - Peter, Paul & Mary (9)
  4. "Blue in Green" - Miles Davis (9)
  5. "Come Sail Away" - Styx (5)
  6. "Con Te Partiro" - Andrea Bocelli (2)
  7. "Emergency" - Icona Pop (4)
  8. "Fly Me to the Moon" - Frank Sinatra (2)
  9. "GTO" - The Datonas (6)
  10. "Hard Headed Woman" - Cat Stevens (9)
  11. "Have I Told You Lately" - Rod Stewart (7)
  12. "Highway 61 Revisted" - Bob Dylan (9)
  13. "How Much A Dollar Cost" - Kendrick Lamar (4)
  14. "I Was Here" - Beyonce (8)
  15. "I'm A Woman" - Koko Taylor (5)
  16. "If You Love Somebody Set Them Free" - Sting (4)
  17. "Imagine" - John Lennon (9)
  18. "Late for the Sky" - Jackson Browne (9)
  19. "Let's Get It Started" - The Black Eyed Peas (4)
  20. "Lighters" - Bruno Mars (3)
  21. "Live It Up, Pts 1 & 2" - The Isley Brothers (4)
  22. "Love Song" - Sara Bareilles (8)
  23. "Moondance" - Van Morrison (5)
  24. "Old Landmark" - Aretha Franklin (5)
  25. "One" - U2 (1)
  26. "Perro Loco" - Forro In The Dark (4)
  27. "Radar Love" - Golden Earring (6)
  28. "Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours) - Stevie Wonder (8)
  29. "Sinnerman" - Nina Simone (4)
  30. "Symphony of Psalms" - Igor Stravinsky (7)
  31. "The Goldberg Variations" - J.S. Bach (9)
  32. "Tightrope" - Janelle Monae (8)
  33. "Treat 'Em Right" - Chubb Rock (8)
  34. "Truckin'" - The Grateful Dead (9)
  35. "Two of Us" - The Beatles (1)
  36. "Unbreakable" - Michael Jackson (8)
  37. "Under Pressure" - David Bowie & Queen (1)
  38. "What a Wonderful World" - Louis Armstrong (5)
  39. "Won't Get Fooled Again" - The Who (9)

The successful people? Here they are (with links to where their playlists appeared):