Does Work Culture In Canada Differ From The US? – Here Is All You Need To Know

Does Work Culture In Canada Differ From The US – Here Is All You Need To Know
Does Work Culture In Canada Differ From The US – Here Is All You Need To Know

Curating several responses both from Canadian employees and US employees, some points are recurring. When it comes to working culture, Canadians enjoy more liberty than Americans do. If you consider the American work environment way more competitive and stiff than the Canadian work environment, you may not be entirely wrong, many people say the same. This is not to say that the typical American work environment is bad, I mean what better way is there to be motivated to build your career than to be in an environment where you are spurred to put in your best and prove yourself very often?

Canadians report having a nationally approved yearly paid vacation, maternity leave, and parent allowance that American employees scarcely enjoy, and if they do, they are scared of coming back from a vacation to no job. It is also not nationally approved, and can therefore not be enforced on any employer who chooses not to grant workers such privilege.

Work culture for the typical Canadian is more about fulfillment than duty, but the typical American work culture emphasizes hierarchy and duty. This makes work not entirely tied to one’s identity as a Canadian employee. So, if you are career driven, and must choose between both countries, you know which suits you by now I guess.

Coming from an employee in a Canadian firm that often sends its workers to the United States for exchange programs, and has US employees come over to the Canadian office; his colleagues always have stories on returning. Stories about how you don’t want to make the mistake of getting familiar with a colleague at work, because he’s going to use the things you’ve said against you the next minute.

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He also talked about a US employee who came to Canada for exchange and wanted nothing but to stay back. By the time she was close to returning, she asked for a transfer, the office tried to work that out for her but the Canadian immigration didn’t grant it. Guess what? A few days later she got married to a Canadian! How determined can anyone be?

While these are the general responses from several employees from both countries, a Nigerian immigrant in Canada has this to say;

“As much as the work culture in Canada is not as competitive as it is in the United States, you must maximize your work hours to the fullest if you want to keep your Canadian job.”

“Very much unlike what we do in Nigeria, don’t get caught peeking at your phone or answering messages or calls, you don’t want to be caught chatting or lazing around during work hours, you don’t want to dare use company’s computer or wifi for anything personal.”

“And yes colleagues backbite in Canada too, so while laughing and chatting during lunch, you may want to watch what you say, because the boss would most likely hear it” she added.

Another Nigerian immigrant said one thing she has noticed everywhere she has worked is, nobody wants to come across as anti-social in the workplace, even though most people have no business with others after work hours. So, being social and chatty in the workplace, (the water cooler precisely please) is culture.

Hopefully, you know what to expect, wherever you end up choosing. Best of luck!

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