Swedish: trivselregler

Gavril

Senior Member
English, USA
Many Swedish companies/organizations have a set of rules called trivselregler, sometimes incorporated into a larger phrase trivsel- och ordningsregler.

(Based on the little searching I've done, Norwegian appears to prefer a variant with -s- in the middle, trivselsregler. I'm not sure what the situation is in Danish.)

What I find tricky about the term trivselregler is that ”trivsel” is presumably the *goal* of the rules, rather than the content of them.

Although phrases like ”rules for comfort”/”rules for wellbeing” might work in some contexts, they sound rather odd to me in the context of a workplace.

To come up with a better translation of trivselregler, I need a better understanding of what such rules actually do (in order to achieve the goal of ”trivsel”).

For example, are trivselregler generally guidelines for how to behave towards other employees?

How to maintain cleanliness/order in your workspace?

How to respond to medical/safety issues?

Etc.?


Thanks for your time,
G.
 
  • AutumnOwl

    Senior Member
    Swedish, Finnish
    I would say it's guidelines aimed to prevent irritations in a workplace, or a place used by several people. I's about cleanliness, order, to make things "flow easy" in a work place. For example, if you share a room with a colleague, leave the room if making/taking a private call. Or in a group, to make a list of who takes with "fredagsfika", or puts the last hand on the order in the kitchen.

    For medical/safety issues, there are rules/laws, "arbetsmiljöföreskrifter", to be followed, and these rules are to be evaluated by the employer and a representative for the employees once a year, these are binding, not "trivselregler". Workplace safety is important here in Sweden, and an employer can be fined not following the laws.
     

    MattiasNYC

    Senior Member
    Swedish
    Although phrases like ”rules for comfort”/”rules for wellbeing” might work in some contexts, they sound rather odd to me in the context of a workplace.

    "Comfort" and "wellbeing" came to my mind as well, but I also agree with you that they don't seem to fit entirely. It's a bit like the word "fika" which in AE doesn't really have an equivalent conceptually. Hope you find some wording that works better, 'cause I'm drawing a blank...

    I agree with AutumnOwl.
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    I think "trivselsregler" (yes, that is the Norwegian version) is a kind of euphemism for "ordensregler", which used to be the standard word. I don't know if "trivselsregler" is used much at Norwegian workplaces, but it is used in schools, for example. "Ordensregler" may sound a bit authoritarian, so it has been replaced with a "nicer" word in some contexts.

    However, a "nicer" word does not change the reality: that some people are telling others how to behave. So maybe something like "rules of conduct" could work?
     

    MattiasNYC

    Senior Member
    Swedish
    To me "rules of conduct" sounds strict and not really in line with "trivselregler", despite "rules" ("regler") being in the actual word.
     

    serbianfan

    Senior Member
    British English
    "Trives" and "trivsel" are difficult words to translate: "de ansatte trives" = the staff are happy? enjoy their work? get on well together? thrive??? Actually, "well-being" and "job satisfaction", although they are nouns, are probably closest to the meaning of "trives". So, since we have the noun "trivsel" here, I would go for "rules for well-being".
     

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    To me "rules of conduct" sounds strict and not really in line with "trivselregler", despite "rules" ("regler") being in the actual word.

    Yes, I agree. The combination of 'rules' and 'conduct' is probably too strict. But could 'guidelines' be used instead of 'rules', to make it less strict?

    So, since we have the noun "trivsel" here, I would go for "rules for well-being".

    That's a quite literal translation, but the question is whether Gavril needs a literal translation or a translation that describes the function of the 'trivselsregler'. That may depend on the context.
     

    Gavril

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    That's a quite literal translation, but the question is whether Gavril needs a literal translation or a translation that describes the function of the 'trivselsregler'. That may depend on the context.

    At the moment, I don't have a specific context for trivsel(s)regler in mind, I'm just trying to better understand what it means.

    Maybe something like "Congeniality rules"/"Rules for congeniality" would capture the meaning described by AutumnOwl above.

    BTW, I'm not sure this is directly relevant, but:

    I would say it's guidelines aimed to prevent irritations in a workplace, or a place used by several people. I's about cleanliness, order, to make things "flow easy" in a work place. For example, if you share a room with a colleague, leave the room if making/taking a private call. Or in a group, to make a list of who takes with "fredagsfika", or puts the last hand on the order in the kitchen.

    What do you mean by "who puts the last hand on the order"?
     
    Last edited:

    raumar

    Senior Member
    Norwegian
    Maybe something like "Congeniality rules"/"Rules for congeniality" would capture the meaning described by AutumnOwl above.
    I think this is a good solution. It makes it clear that this is about how you contribute to everybody's wellbeing, not how you improve your own wellbeing.
     

    AutumnOwl

    Senior Member
    Swedish, Finnish
    What do you mean by "who puts the last hand on the order"?
    The person/persons who makes the final cleaning up in the workplace kitchen/lunch room when everyone have had "fika". Even if everyone puts their own dirty dishes in the dishwasher, the area has to be "neaten up", and things be put back in their right places. The cleaners usually only do floors and toilets, not kitchen surfaces, the fridge, or desks. (I have worked at hospitals, and health care centres, and I don't know how things work in other areas.) In most places the "trivselregler" are not explicitly written down, there may be a list of "who's on kitchen duty this week", but what is involved in the "kitchen duty" is usually informal, and you have to ask what is expected of you when you are new at a workplace.

    In most places I've worked there have been a tradition of a Friday morning break, when there are bread, cheese, possibly some cold cuts, and jam, to the coffee break, when everyone in the workplace can sit down together. It's about "trivsel på arbetsplatsen". Of course there are workplaces where it's not possible for everyone to take a break at the same time, it's easier in a small healthcare centre than at the emergency department, but there are "fredagsfika", and the staff takes their morning break when they are able to. In Sweden workers have the legal right to breaks during the day, a longer (often 30 minute) lunch break, and a short pause (10 -15 minutes) morning or afternoon break, depending on how the the work hours are. The rules for breaks are a part of the Swedish collective agreements between employer and employee unions.
     

    Ben Jamin

    Senior Member
    Polish
    I think "trivselsregler" (yes, that is the Norwegian version) is a kind of euphemism for "ordensregler", which used to be the standard word. I don't know if "trivselsregler" is used much at Norwegian workplaces, but it is used in schools, for example. "Ordensregler" may sound a bit authoritarian, so it has been replaced with a "nicer" word in some contexts.

    However, a "nicer" word does not change the reality: that some people are telling others how to behave. So maybe something like "rules of conduct" could work?
    Yes, the wording is a euphemism. The use of euphemisms grows in geometrical order in most countries in the world. I wonder if there ever comes a reaction and calling to call a spade a spade. For many people it is a nuisance, but only a few dare say it publicly. Euphemisms have the dangerous feature of being quickly worn out and there is a need of replacing them with new euphemisms.
     

    Segorian

    Senior Member
    Icelandic & Swedish
    I mostly agree with what has already been said. In a workplace I think that “office rules” could work (at least sometimes), but more generally it seems to me that trivselregler is a concept much more closely associated with schools, gyms, apartment buildings etc. than to offices or other places of work, so it is probably not possible to use the same translation in all cases.
     

    MattiasNYC

    Senior Member
    Swedish
    Maybe Raumar was onto something earlier;

    Yes, I agree. The combination of 'rules' and 'conduct' is probably too strict. But could 'guidelines' be used instead of 'rules', to make it less strict?

    I think some construction using "guide" or "guidelines" is likely to sound better than using "rules". And then it's "just" a matter of finding an accompanying word to go with it, such as "comfort" or "wellbeing" or something similar.
     

    Segorian

    Senior Member
    Icelandic & Swedish
    It's also worth mentioning that combinations like ordnings- och trivselregler are very often used, which perhaps tells us something about the nature of such rules or guidelines.
     
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