So, you have successfully migrated into Canada as a foreigner and you have even managed to land yourself a job in Canada.
Because you are not very conversant with the Canadian society or work environment, it might be hard for you to picture what it will be like and what to expect when working in Canada.
Every country has its own workplace culture unique to it. Just like your own country does as well. We will be solving this problem for you in this article by letting you in on important things you should expect while working in Canada.
Things To Expect When Working In Canada
1. Know the Canadian Etiquette
While on the job, there are certain behaviours that you will observe. For example, when people are talking to other colleagues that you don’t know, you will be properly introduced to the said people.
And also, people are usually addressed by a title and their last names. For example, Ms Joan Smith will be addressed as Ms Smith. Canadians like proper introductions.
Also, once you have made an appointment with someone or a group of people at work, it is expected of you to be there at the appointment and if there is a reason why you can’t make it, it is polite to let them know you can’t be there as soon as possible.
2. Lateness Is Not Appreciated
Lateness is not appreciated in Canada and it is expected of you to always keep to time. This is a major part of the Canadian work etiquette that you will see a lot and that type of etiquette is “promptness“.
Also, at work, Canadian workers and co-workers mind their own business and they do not ask colleagues about sensitive issues like their personal matters, sexuality and more. It is expected that workers remain friendly with each other and keep it at workplace friendliness level and not get too personal.
3. Greeting Is Normal
Another etiquette to expect is greetings. When you see your co-workers and they see you for the first time during the day, you will be offered greetings such as “good morning” depending on the time of the day they saw you. Understand that a different language like French while being greeted, is expected.
They won’t greet you every time they see you throughout the day though. It’s just for the first time.
Also, the boss is always treated with respect and more formally than other workers at work. That’s the way things are at Canadian workplaces with the boss. If you need to discuss anything with the boss, you will need to make an appointment with him or her. But if you need to speak with your colleagues, you can just drop by and speak to them.
These are the major work etiquettes you should expect to see in the Canadian work sphere and at your own workplace.
4. Your Pay Day is a little different in Canada from the normal ones
Many countries of the world have their payday once a month usually by the month ending. But in Canada, many workers receive their payments two times in a month usually at the start and middle of the calendar month. A bit odd, right?
5. The lunch breaks are kind of short
In your country perhaps, and in many other countries of the world, the lunch breaks typically last for 1 hour. The lunch break duration for Canada is actually 30 minutes. Canadian workers are extremely hard workers and many times, they eat their lunch while still working at their computers.
Also, the remaining 30 minutes of the lunch break (remainder of the 1 hour) is broken up into two 15 minutes duration that is spread out throughout the rest of the day during which you can stretch, walk about; or grab a cup of coffee with your colleagues.
But mainly many of the companies in Canada have policies that stipulate that lunch breaks should be 30 minutes long.
6. Expect Casual Fridays in Canada
The Canadian work sphere is a huge fan of Casual Fridays where workers come to work dressed in casual jeans and skirts. Although, the week (i.e from Mondays to Fridays) is spent dressed in professional wears. So, expect that at your workplace, casual dressings will be the norm on Fridays.
Also, a trend is starting to happen in Canada’s work sphere where companies are starting to opt for the informal dressing style as the norm for workers to wear throughout the week. Although, formal clothes during the week are still worn and have not been entirely been scrapped.
7. Expect two languages to be spoken at work
You should know by now that Canada is a bilingual country and the two languages mainly spoken are English and French languages.
Many Canadian companies work with clients who speak both English and French or one of them. So, it might be in your advantage to brush up on whichever language of the two which you are still struggling with.