6 things about Finnish worklife

  • In Finland, everybody’s favourite working time is 8 am – 4 pm. Except of course the people working in Helsinki. Our favourite working time is 9 am – 4 pm.
  • Late evenings at the office are not a virtue in Finland – like in Germany, UK and Switzerland (at least based on my own experience). Here, you have time to do fun things on weekdays too! That is, if you are not too tired of the winter darkness or having a flu.
  • The dresscode is really casual at Finnish workplaces (banks & law firms are the only exceptions). You get more eye rolling in too fancy clothes than in sweatpants.
  • Finns value both work and family. Many suffer from a constant feeling of insuffiency about the balance of these two.
  • We use humour to handle stress, uncomfortable situations and build work relationships.
  • We drink a lot of coffee at work. It is free or there is a piggy bank for it. Uncoffeenated Finn is silent, cranky and has a headache. Well-coffeenated Finn is silent and uncooperative.

Dear readers, I would love to know, what is typical at work in your country?


  1. TerryF

    I don’t know if there is such a thing as a typical work day in Canada. Full time work is considered an 8 hour day, but it can start at any time of the morning, afternoon, or evening. A lot of people have to work longer than that in order to make enough to get by on. My grandson works 10 hours a day for 4 days, then has 3 days off. He alternates between days, evenings and nights. For most average workers I think 9-10 hours a day is becoming more the norm.


    1. Varpu Poyry

      Hi Terry, thanks for commenting. So interesting to read this! Nice routine with that 4 workdays & 3 days off. As I do night shifts only couple of time per year in my work, I truly appreciate people working regularly at night!


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