July 22, 2009

What's Your "Cool it Now" Number?

How many times can you listen to this song in a row? I start seeing unfavorable side effects around 38, but found the collective office threshold is much, much lower.

As coffee highs waned, bagel carbs crashed and the cube farm fell into silence, we enlisted Ronnie, Bobby, Rickie and Mike (+ Ralph) for a motivational experiment. Everyone knows playing New Edition's "Cool it Now" over the paging system provides a noticeable five-minute productivity bump (it's been in the effective manager's toolbox for years), but exactly how long could heightened performance levels be sustained? How would coworkers react to having their dopamine receptors milked repeatedly for hours?

Not too well, as it turns out. Although results were initially promising, the HR rep pulled the plug after an unfortunate "I'm so excited/scared" incident about 14 plays in, and for the rest of the day we were only allowed to listen to Sven Libaek's Open Sea Theme (via Life Aquatic). Please use the streaming dashboard below to discover your personal threshold and share the results.

New Edition - Cool It Now (buy the mp3 on Amazon)

New Edition - Cool It Now (VEGA remix) (from VEGA's Nicky Digital mix)

Robbers on High Street - Cool It Now (from Guilt By Association Vol. 2)

New Edition - Cool It Now (Extended Dub)


Anonymous said...

made it to three plays...then coworker voiced concerns. will try again later

pappy said...

I love this song!!!! The VEGA remix is great too.

Anonymous said...

I have taken part in this experiment and must say that your results seem to be accurate. Need to take a break from the VEGA version but am feeling the original! That is until my roommate plays it beyond the appropriate level.

Unknown said...

A mid-afternoon Cool It Now session resulted in a number of 24 - the more a few of the cubes protested the more a hardcore group of us stuck it out.

Z said...

24 might be a new record for the office setting. Well played.

Anonymous said...

I am revisiting this post now. Ironically, when it was first published I was knee-deep in a weekend-long "neon bible" binge (the song--not the album). After finally getting fed-up with manually starting the song again, and giving in to the 1-song-auto-repeat function (an official sign that you have a problem on your hands), I started to experience unfavorable effects (hence couldn't finish reading the post until now because of general distraction and unease).
How much was finally too much you ask? The crowd maxes out at 30? My playcount for this song is at 127. 127! (I'm certain before the weekend it was in the single digits.)
Could it be because I am an only-child and therefore my boredom-threshold is eerily high...or, let's face it...should I be concerned about autism?

Jason said...

Oh god, I couldn't make it to one...you guys are hardcore. That high voice is too distracting, I just sit here with my mouth open in disbelief.

eda said...




Chicago Auto Insurance said...

I'm willing to say about half way though the second play, I got 3, Uh, again?

After 4 plays I was forced to change the song.

poker online said...

Jason, you are so right! I am shocked by that voice but nevertheless... Some people thinks it's nice, so why judge?