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Danish work culture

Informal, flexible, autonomous - these are some of the words that characterize the typical Danish work environment.

Danish work culture

An informal, nonhierarchical environment

The typical Danish workplace is characterized by an informal atmosphere and a flat management structure. Teamwork and knowledge-sharing are valued traits, and the distance between senior and junior employees is generally quite small. Everyone is encouraged to actively participate and voice their opinions in the workplace, regardless of position.


Both planned and informal meetings are typical in the Danish workplace. It is not uncommon to have informal discussions with colleagues over coffee or a communal lunch. When a meeting is scheduled, however, it is generally expected that employees arrive on time and come prepared to take part in discussion. Punctuality is highly valued.


Flexible working conditions 

The typical workweek in Denmark is 37 hours, making it one of the shortest in Europe. A late work meeting will usually not run past 17:00 and most people leave work by 16:00. Employees are generally given a fair amount of flexibility and autonomy to organize their workload around their individual needs so long as deadlines are met. With the mobility that Internet access enables, it is also becoming easier to work from home.


The autonomy and flexibility typically granted to employees has many positive effects, including reduced stress, high levels of job satisfaction, and more committed workers. Employers, in turn, value employees who are self-motivated, independent, and willing to take initiative.


Socializing at the workplace

Danish society is very family-oriented, so co-workers do not necessarily socialize together after work hours. It is common, however, to hold social events at the workplace and most workplaces have a calendar of set social activities.


Read more about Danish work culture on Work in Denmark's website.