I work in a small office. Our office and cubes are close together, and sometimes the noise level doesn't let me focus.
On occasion, I wear earbuds with some very low level music just to drown out the sound, and no one (read:partners) seems to really have a problem with it. I used to work for a firm that forbid the use of any headphones until after 6pm.
I have got my hands on a nice pair of active noise-canceling over-the-ear headphones, which will REALLY drown out the office banter. But I will also look like I am wearing a set of AllClad pots on my head, and I will not hear anyone walking up behind my desk.
Anyone else thinking of wearing or actually wearing larger headphones in the office? Are the bosses/partners OK with it?