Some really excellent points here! One take you might like is that a team tends to go through phases of working quietly and chatting. Which is great for getting work done, because it's naturally quiet and you'll all take a break at roughly the same time.
But in an open plan office, the team next to you may well be quiet when you're loud, and vice versa. Better office space certainly reduces the need for headphones.
And whene'er I work from home, I find I don't need them, or music, at all.
It's true, sometimes there is like a general consensus on when to concentrate on work and when to talk. I think it is important for the employer to think about noise when choosing interior such as carpets, furniture and ceiling.
At home I sometimes put on low music on my Sonos speaker while working. It's a lot easier on my ears than headphone.
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