people in 51 other countries drink more than Swedes.
This kind of depends where you are, because after all Sweden is a long country.
This non-hierarchical approach to decision-making obviously doesn’t work everywhere.
I recently spoke with a Swedish manager who has tried to bring in an open-door policy at his office at an Asian car company, actively encouraging his employees to share their opinions or raise problems.
They even have a place in the aspirational ‘Swedish dream’ of ‘villa, Volvo, vovve’ (a house, a Volvo and a dog).
Volvo remains Sweden’s favourite car, making up three of the top six models among newly registered passenger cars in 2012.
But his employees won’t speak up because in their company culture pointing out mistakes is taboo.
In Sweden, the open-door policy usually isn’t needed because managers share an open-plan office with their employees.
Even the far north, where the mercury can plummet to -40°C in the winter, can get hot.
Often in the early summer we in the south shiver and splash about in puddles while Arctic Lapland basks in sunshine and temperatures in the 20s. Volvos are safe, understated, and they drink too much. Despite now being under Chinese ownership, Volvos remain very much in the hearts – and on the driveways – of the average Swede.
In 2012, 88 per cent of all aluminium cans and PET bottles in Sweden were included in the recycling system – not far off the 90 per cent target set by the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency.