Anderson Teixeira studied Finnish and got to know Finnish working life at Into Seinäjoki for three months. Here are his experiences and observations about working life in Finland compared to Brazil.


I want to briefly mention what my experience was like at Into Seinäjoki and in Finland and some differences between Finnish and Brazilian professional life that I observed during the 3 months of internship.

”Hei! Olen Andersson ja teen työharjoittelua Into Seinäjoessa” maybe you didn´t listen this phrase before, but I repeat that very much. I arrived here in November 2021. My degree is in Psychology, I finished it in 2009 and since then I have completed 2 more postgraduate courses (Psychoanalysis and Neuropsychology). My last job was in a private clinic with other healthcare specialists.

I officially started studying suomenkieltä in Sedu since October 2022 and will finish level A2.3 at the end of October this year. I lived most of my life in city of Fortaleza, in the Northeast of Brazil. 2.5 million people there (half of Finland’s entire population).

Changing your life is not so easy, but at the same time you can also have many different and new experiences with unforgettable moments. Changing career, country, language, and friends can require a lot of adaptation (I still continue with it) and requires a lot of time and deep support from your family, wife and friends and also your new environment. Life in Finland is much calmer and less stressful than in Brazil.

My first impression here was that people here listen to each other.

Talking about my impressions of the working environment at Into Seinäjoki, it is very different from what I have worked in my country. If I could talk a little about my work experiences in different places, education levels and positions, my first impression here was that people here listen to each other, maintain a good professional relationship and consequently a good working environment as well. No matter the difference between ages/positions, people are generally treated as equals.

The hierarchization of work positions or their use as an imposition of will is very common in Brazil. Management positions are still mostly occupied by men and treatment between men and women is still very unequal, despite holding similar positions. Competition and pressure at work are also very strong in many aspects among employees. I worked mostly in the health sector, so the doctor’s position is always more privileged among other professionals (in most places, the same situation exists between those who are privileged and those who are not). Which in my opinion is totally wrong, because by doing this you are creating or reproducing a bad system for that place.

But until now I am very grateful for what has happened so far in this new home (country) because I met new people from different backgrounds. I got a suomenkielen internship in this amazing place with good people, who are very nice

and polite to me. Meanwhile, I started putting suomenkieli into practice by calling some companies. My experience was a mix of feelings, as I encountered many different reactions on the other side of the phone (those who were kind and polite, those who didn’t understand what you were saying, those who thought it was a prank or propaganda, and those who didn’t want to listen anything). It was a big challenge, but challenges are something that will be normal until you understand suomea and are understood by the others too.

Thank You Into Seinäjoki!

I can’t say how grateful I am for this opportunity to have this experience at Into Seinäjoki because it is very important for any immigrant who wants to improve their suomen language skills and for their own integration into this society, starting to feel good among the native speakers of Finnish. I finish this internship that brought me many good things and helped me a lot to develop my language skills, as well as meeting many people in different areas, making contacts, which can open many doors for me to get my first job and take another step to go further within Finnish society.

Learning Finnish can be difficult and challenging at the same time, but with determination, a lot of persistence and patience, you will eventually start to understand a little bit every day what is being said and written. It would be interesting and encouraging for others to hear as well. And at the same time, I want to encourage companies to recruit international talents.

Working two days a week, I shortly want to mention how my experience was about being at Into Seinäjoki in Finland and some differences between Finnish and Brazilian work-life that I observed during 3 months of journey. At the first day in the office, one thing called my attention. That every employee talked with you, in Brazil, you might not see this kind of a presentation of new person in the routine every workplace. Another thing that I have observed among colleagues is how they address to each other, no matter what the difference between the ages/positions is, people are usually addressed.

What’s Good in Finnish Work Life:

  1. Work-Life Balance: Finland is known for its excellent work-life balance. The standard workweek is typically 40 hours, and employees often enjoy flexible working hours and the ability to work remotely when necessary. This emphasis on work-life balance contributes to overall job satisfaction.
  2. Equality and Trust: Finnish workplaces prioritize equality and trust among colleagues. Hierarchy is typically flat, and decisions are made collectively. This creates an inclusive and open work environment where employees feel valued and heard.
  3. High Quality of Life: Finland offers a high quality of life with a strong social safety net. Employees have access to healthcare, education, and other benefits, which reduces the stress related to these aspects and allows them to focus on their jobs.

Challenges in Finnish Work Life:

  1. Dark Winters: One of the challenges of working in Finland is coping with the long, dark winters. The lack of daylight during winter months can affect mood and motivation. Employers often implement strategies to combat seasonal affective disorder and maintain employee well-being.
  2. High Cost of Living: While Finland offers an excellent quality of life, it comes at a cost. The cost of living, including housing and everyday expenses, can be relatively high. This can put pressure on employees to earn higher salaries to maintain their desired lifestyle.
  3. Reserved Communication Style: Finnish people tend to have a reserved communication style, which might be challenging for those from more expressive cultures, like Brazil. This reserved nature can sometimes be misinterpreted as aloofness or disinterest, but it’s a cultural norm in Finland.

Biggest Differences in Working Culture between Finland and Brazil:

  1. Hierarchy and Communication: Brazilian workplaces often have a more hierarchical structure, where titles and seniority play a significant role. In contrast, Finnish workplaces are typically flat, with open and direct communication among colleagues, regardless of rank.
  2. Work Hours and Flexibility: Finland places a strong emphasis on work-life balance and offers more flexible work hours, while in Brazil, the work culture might involve longer hours and less flexibility in terms of remote work or flexible schedules.
  3. Punctuality and Time Management: Finnish work culture places a high value on punctuality and efficient time management. Meetings and deadlines are expected to be met promptly. In Brazil, there might be a more relaxed approach to time, with flexibility in meeting schedules and a less rigid adherence to deadlines.

These differences in work culture between Finland and Brazil reflect the broader cultural distinctions between these two countries, impacting how people approach and experience their professional lives.


Questions? Please contact: Anderson S. Teixeira, tel. +358 40 375 8502,