I just discovered this article from 2004, which I can strongly relate to (having worked with headphones for years now)… Jeff Atwood – This is your Anti-Productivity Pod:
“'Staying late or arriving early or staying home to work in peace is a damning indictment of the office environment.'
[…] Changing your work environment, however, is easier discussed than done. I think the only way I could change mine is if I actually quit my job.
[…] It may not be beyond human capacity, but it's hard to envision change when only managers have offices.”