This Must Be The Place: Funkified New Wave Jams To Boost Your Productivity, Heart Rate

When the Talking Heads released their breakthrough album Speaking in Tongues 30 years ago, they inadvertently crafted a pop music soundtrack for doing better business. Think we’re just tooting a naive melody? Don’t make us burn down your house or throw you in a swamp!

This Must Be The Place: Funkified New Wave Jams To Boost Your Productivity, Heart Rate

Welcome to the second edition of Fast Company‘s Leadership Album of the Week, where we make a pathetic (but inspired!) attempt at misinterpreting famous song lyrics for the benefit of your productivity.


Last week we took you on a belief-filled ride with Journey’s 1981 epic, Escape. Today, we’re going to jump ahead two years (and in a bit of a different direction) to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the masterful Talking Heads album, Speaking in Tongues.

Before we start, a few things to remember:

1. Play the video.
2. Understand that we take lyrics completely out of context the value of our advice.
3. Repeat.


Are you ready? Good. Because it’s time to get funky.

“Burning Down the House”

I’m an ordinary guy
Burning down the house
Hold tight, wait till the party’s over
Hold tight, we’re in for nasty weather
There has got to be a way

Is this song happy or dark? Let’s go with happy, because happiness is good for productivity.

You’re an ordinary guy (or girl) and there’s only one thing to do: Burn down the house! In other words, it’s time to kick some ass. Sure, there might me some hiccups along the way (nasty weather), but you’re going to do it.



What better way to motivate yourself than learning from a Navy SEAL?

Or you could just take steps to energize your life.


“Girlfriend Is Better”

Down, down in the basement we hear the sound of machines
And I, I’m driving in circles
Come to my senses sometimes
Why, why, why, why start it over?
Nothing was lost, everything’s free
I don’t care how impossible it seems

Like lovers, passion can become a pitfall for entrepreneurs. And a dangerous one at that.

You have to be careful not to make too many excuses in pursuit of the impossible and blind your senses. If you’re too in love with an idea, it will happen.

Truth be told, I think the difference between passion and delusion isn’t even very distinguishable. I suspect many an entrepreneur has fallen too far down the rabbit hole without even realizing it. It happened to me. Maxed-out credit cards, empty cupboards, and a frustrated spouse helped me wake up to the delusion I created in myself. I was laser-focused on the belief I had to succeed no matter what, which led me to lose sight of reality.

The last thing you want to do is drive in circles, especially when you’re affecting those who really matter.



Click click- see ya later
Beta beta- no time to rest
Peeka peeka- risky business
All that blood, they were covered in mess.

Contrary to what Mr. Byrne is expressing, there IS time to rest. There is a science to sleep and productivity. The short of it: Understand that sleep is highly individual.

If you find yourself having trouble dozing off at night, establish a pre-bed ritual and train your brain for success.

Anything else is Risky Business.


“This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)”

Hi yo I got plenty of time
Hi yo you got light in your eyes
And you’re standing here beside me
I love the passing of time
Never for money
Always for love

Money’s great, sure. But as the above song suggests, it’s all about one thing. Love, man.

The scenario: You’ve got a pretty decent job that pays well, but you don’t love it. However, that job that you do love exists at your company. How do you get it?

Learn the basics of “job crafting” and fulfill your dreams in the workplace.


Finally, make the case. While Schawbel’s research has found that many companies are open to lateral moves, the surest way to be granted permission to try something new is to do it on top of your regular job. “You have to master your current role,” says Schawbel. “If you can’t deliver above expectations in your current role, if you can’t fulfill your job description in the best possible way, you’re not going to be able to get a new job at your company.” The good news is that if you’ve mastered your role, you may have some free time and won’t have to put in too many additional hours to take on your new tasks, too.

Do you have any suggestions for Leadership Album of the Week? If so, share it with us in the comments!

[Image: Flickr user Luca Vanzella]


About the author

Former Editorial Assistant Miles Kohrman helped run Fast Company's homepage and completed miscellaneous tasks around the newsroom. He is a 2013 graduate of The New School.