How to Adapt to the Canadian Workplace - Tips for Foreign Workers
Jobs & Career

How to Adapt to the Canadian Workplace – Tips for Foreign Workers



If you are searching for a job or already employed in Canada, adapting to the Canadian workplace culture can prove challenging for foreign workers.

One way to make the transition easier is by learning some fundamental business etiquette. This will make you feel more at ease and secure in your new role.

1. Understand the company’s culture

Workplace culture plays a significant role in setting employer expectations, and understanding these guidelines is essential for your success at work.


Newcomers to Canada may feel lost adjusting to the Canadian workplace, and it takes some time to become comfortable. But once you begin working, a supportive workplace culture can greatly boost your productivity levels and job satisfaction.

One way to understand a company’s culture is by asking questions. Doing this will enable you to identify the main strengths and weaknesses of the organization, enabling you to make an informed decision as to whether or not it meets your professional objectives.

2. Ask questions

Immigrants to Canada often face unique career obstacles due to the differences in work culture between their home countries and Canada’s. By understanding and adapting to the Canadian workplace culture, newcomers can overcome these difficulties and progress within their field of expertise.


Canada encourages employees to be engaged in their workplaces and ask their managers if they feel like being overlooked.

Language barriers and cultural differences often compound these difficulties. To effectively communicate in a foreign country, it’s essential to learn their language and adhere to their rules of conduct.


3. Learn the language

Many newcomers to Canada feel overwhelmed by the culture shock of starting a job in another country. Yet, adapting and succeeding at work are essential for long-term success.

One way to demonstrate your dedication is by taking language classes in either English or French. Doing this will enable you to communicate more effectively with colleagues.

4. Learn the rules of conduct

Canada shares some basic codes of conduct that are widely followed. These rules are founded on values such as honesty, sensitivity, empathy and humility in relationships with friends and strangers alike.

Canadians cherish the freedom to disagree openly when necessary, particularly when it comes to political matters where many Canadians hold differing opinions about important topics like taxes, spending, poverty reduction measures, welfare systems, immigration laws and policies affecting criminal justice and social policy.

5. Be on time

Punctuality and attendance are paramount in the Canadian workplace. It is not acceptable to be late or miss a workday without valid reason.

Attendance and punctuality are critical components in determining your performance level. Demonstrating that you value both your employer’s and coworkers’ time is essential for maintaining a high standard.

Furthermore, it’s essential to comprehend the company’s culture and etiquette. Doing so will enable you to excel in your new career!

6. Make eye contact

Maintaining eye contact during a conversation is essential to convey sincerity and make others more comfortable speaking to you.

Canadians typically keep a distance of about an arm’s length between themselves when conversing in groups (including during COVID-19). This helps them protect their personal space and prevents others from invading it.

Furthermore, it’s best to break eye contact intermittently rather than holding it for prolonged periods of time, which could appear scrutinizing or threatening. Furthermore, staring is considered rude; so make sure you blink and display normal facial expressions during conversations.

7. Don’t be pushy

One of the greatest obstacles for newcomers to Canada is fitting into the Canadian workplace culture. It is essential to be conscious of how your actions may influence colleagues and supervisors.

Communication is essential in the Canadian workplace. This requires knowing how to ask questions and receive an answer, as well as communicating with colleagues and customers in a friendly and courteous way.

Maintaining eye contact when speaking to a colleague or customer is beneficial, as it demonstrates your interest in what they have to say. However, be mindful when looking away; keeping your gaze focused on the speaker makes for more productive conversation.



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