Where To Start Your Career: Top 5 Countries With The Perfect Work-Life Balance

Having the perfect balance between your work life, family and leisure is for most people the formula to a happy life. And in some countries this formula is better balanced than in others.

Where To Start Your Career: Top 5 Countries With The Perfect Work-Life Balance

As most of us are still starting Career Girls, it is easier to job-hop and travel around to see where you want to settle down and work.

If you would like to have the perfect work/life balance, some countries are better to live in than others. The United States, for example, is one of the countries with the most overworked people. Long hours, little sleep and not a lot of paid holidays is mostly the cause of it.

Since we all would love a perfect balance between our career and personal life, it is sometimes good to consider your options across borders. Research done by the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development) shows in which countries this balance is at is best and where the quality of life is still very high!

#1 – Germany

According to this research Germans work an average of 27.8 hours a week (how awesome is that!) which is one of the lowest working hours found in this study. Although you might think that working less hours means a lower quality of life, the opposite is true. Germans have a high standard of living and still have one of the strongest economies in Europe. So maybe the perfect balance of the ‘happy life formula’ might turn out better than we initially thought.

#2 – Brazil

Brazil is the country with the most paid holidays per year in this world. Full-time employee’s can get up to 41 (!) paid holiday’s from which 11 are federal holidays and the others are for leisure. The work/life balance in Brazil is one of the best in the world, people tend to be more happy and satisfied with their lives.

#3 – France/Finland

Just like in Brazil, the French and Finish don’t have a lot to complain when talking about paid holidays. With 40 paid holidays per year, these two countries share a worthy second place. Furthermore, in Finland only 0.04% of the populations works over 50 hours a week on average! This is also an important indicator to measure the work/life balance.

#4 – Denmark

This is the country with the best work-life balance and was ranked #1 by the OECD. With 34 paid holidays and, just like Finland, only 0.04% is working an average of 50 hours a week, good salaries and a high quality of living, Denmark is certainly a country for Career Girls.

#5 – The Netherlands

In the Netherlands, people work an average of 27.6 hours a week. According to this research, nowhere in the world are workers less on the job than in the Netherlands. Just like Germany, despite the fact that they work fewer hours, they still maintain a high-quality living and they have an average of 28 paid holidays per year.

  1. This is a really cool post! I am currently learning German in hopes of working in Germany one day. Glad it is one of the happiest places to work!

  2. Now being a dane myself and living in Denmark, I can confirm that the work-life balance is very good. On an average we have 30 paid holidays a year (not 34), and also 6 months paid maternity leave. With an option to have government supported maternity leave for an additional 6-8 months.
    However the ratio of female leaders and CEOs are just as low in Denmark as the rest of the world, so women in Denmark also hit the glass ceiling on their way to the top.
    So even though the work life balance is good here, there is still many obstacles in the way of the womens progress in the corporate world.

  3. I apologize up front if you think I’m bragging. I’m living is Spain and I work Mondays to Fridays from 8.00 to 15.00. We have 17 national holidays and on top of that we get 40 regular paid holidays per year. We do have a large Dutch ex-patriate community living in this area so it’s not a bad place to be living and working either. My apartment is near the beach, I only need to cross the street and the weather’s pretty good all year round. As for the bad things, the beach is made of cobblestones, the streets are dirty and in bad need of repair, politicians run off with taxpayer’s money and banks can rob you without being penalized.

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