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Working with Norwegians

Corporate Hierarchy in Norway

In Norway even large organizations are considered flat, non-hierarchical and equal.

This type of flat work environment allows for open and transparent sharing of information so everyone is included.

Due to this flat structure it is not recommend to try a “top-down” approach to doing business with Norwegian companies.

Norwegian companies have bosses like anywhere else.

However, their role is often much different than in other business cultures.

They lead by coaching and maintaining an inclusive team environment.

They don’t often “crack the whip,” as we like to say in America. Instead, they work together as equal to their colleagues.

Along with this equality you’ll find the need for lots of consensus.

This means that almost all company decisions will additional take time.

This can be frustrating to a foreigners used to faster decision making and iteration cycles.

 

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Working with Norwegians

Norwegian Office Dress Code

By European standards especially, but even by American standards, Norwegian business dress code would be considered informal and casual.

In Norway it’s less important to display one’s wealth through fashion as you might see elsewhere. 

In fact, wearing exotic or ostentatious outfits is usually discouraged in a business setting. Heaven forbid one stands out and attempts to bend the Law of Jante with a fabulous neckline.

Men typically wear conservative business suits in most industries: A blazer and trousers with no tie.

Norwegian business men tend to opt for a simple backpack (locally called a rucksack) instead of a traditional briefcase or more fashionable bag.

For women in most industries, a well-tailored dress, trousers or pantsuit works just fine.

For jewelry, it’s usually minimal and understated.

All of this is not to say that Norwegians don’t appreciate fashion! In fact, they dress very well and purchase a lot of clothing from their slightly more fashion-savvy neighbor Sweden.

So that’s pretty straightforward right? Norwegian women own plenty of amazing, high-end clothes, they simply rarely wear them. Men wear ties but no shoes to parties and don’t wear ties to work.

Welcome to Norway!

 

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Uncategorized Working with Norwegians

Norwegian Drinking Culture

To say Norwegians don’t party hard would be like saying the tax is only a little high in Norway.

It would be quite the understatement.

No, in fact Norwegians enjoy a drink (or 15) and those drunken adventures often cross over into business life as well.

With the cost of alcohol in Norway so high, there’s a local expression that covers their approach to drinking quite well “Being half drunk is a waste of money.”

In Norway they don’t go halfway when it comes to drinking, more like all the way and then some.

 

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Working with Norwegians?

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