Lau­rie Lim Sam works with the laptop
Laurie Lim Sam

Navigating work and culture in Finland

It’s been a little over 3 years since I moved to Finland, and it’s been quite a ride. I’ve been lucky to meet many wonderful and welcoming Finnish people, many of them being my colleagues. Looking back at my first year, I was invited to participate in the Finnish tradition of watching the Independence Day reception on TV and that is how I’ve been spending every 6th of December since.

In my first year, Covid restrictions limited social interactions, and during the summer, I began my internship at Druid. While most people worked remotely, a handful were regulars at the office, including the reserved Finns I had heard about. Initially, our interactions were brief, with short greetings or a simple nod. It took some time, but gradually, we warmed up to each other. Despite their reserved nature, they were always nice and helpful, readily answering my questions from the start.

My experience at Druid has been marked by an admirable work culture. With an 8-to-4 work schedule, clear boundaries between work and personal time allow me to unwind and pursue personal interests without lingering work-related thoughts. I was acknowledged for going the extra mile when an initiative of mine resulted in a promotion and a raise – a gesture that highlighted how the company values and recognizes its employees.

Learning Finnish has been both challenging and rewarding. Despite the difficulty, the predictable pronunciation and support from Finnish-speaking colleagues at Druid give me hope of becoming fluent. In the meantime, I am grateful for my colleagues who make sure that I am included, switching to English when possible and briefing me when not.

Working for Druid has not only provided me with professional growth but has also exposed me to Finnish culture through daily interactions with colleagues. My journey as an immigrant in Finland has been fortunate, marked by adapting to reserved Finnish personalities and embracing cultural differences along the way. I’ve yet to grow accustomed though to the most important one: saunas! But I am working on it.

Read also Laurie´s previous posts:

How to suc­ceed in your in­terns­hip and turn it in­to a full-ti­me po­si­tion?

How to land your first in­terns­hip?


Laurie Lim Sam

Full Stack Developer