Nordea and our people

As a relationship bank, it is our skilled and dedicated employees and their ability to deliver great customer experiences that distinguish us from our competitors. Attracting, developing and maintaining highly motivated people are among our highest priorities.

Demands from our employees and potential employees are changing as ways of life transform and new possibilities for ways of working emerge. Today, employees expect flexibility and independence, and presence is no longer as important as performance. Increased regulatory requirements and complexity in the financial industry create the need for continuous learning. 

Nordea has the responsibility of ensuring that its employees are fairly treated and given equal development opportunities. We offer our employees a workplace that supports diversity, in which differences are both respected and appreciated. We seek to provide a safe, healthy and productive environment that nurtures employee well-being and successful business results.

People strategy at Nordea

Our People strategy is based on our values and the needs from business to achieve the ambitious goals to build the future relationship bank. The strategy encompasses all our key people processes.


Leadership is one of the most important drivers of culture, performance, motivation and job satisfaction. How our leaders perform is key to how our people perform, which in turn impacts the quality of our customers' experience. Our leaders also have an important role in helping their staff to live the company values.

When the world changes, leaders have to change. When leaders are remote from their direct reports – perhaps even in another country – it is even more important that they are ‘present’ in the way they manage. They need to be very clear about responsibilities, what tasks need doing and how people are expected to perform. Increasingly, leaders will be held accountable for developing the employees that report to them and creating the right team to lead the future relationship bank. They will be assessed not only on the ‘what’ (financial performance) but also the ‘how’ (leadership performance). 

We work hard to build leadership skills, and continually invest in identifying the next generation of leaders. In particular, our Leadership Pipeline Programmes support leaders who are stepping into new management roles by helping them develop the capabilities to succeed, while our Leadership Competence Programmes support managers in developing specific competencies in their current roles.

We want our leaders to live our values and inspire others around them. Numerous analyses demonstrate how values and leadership drive key employee factors such as overall satisfaction and motivation as well as a focus on the customer. Similarly, our analyses show that a top-performing manager in terms of values and leadership is twice as likely as a low-performing manager to be in the top 10% of performers in terms of financial results.

Our leaders are assessed on their leadership competencies on a yearly basis through our employee satisfaction survey and as part of their individual personal development discussions.

Talent management

Being able to recruit for more complex and executive positions from within Nordea helps to ensure continuity of relationships with our customers and our on-going ability to deliver excellent customer service. That’s why talent management and succession planning with our existing employees are of the utmost importance. They secure a continuous flow of talent toward our strategic key positions, which in turn enables us to deliver on our business and customer service goals.

With this in mind, we have strengthened our Annual People Review (APR) and brought it more in line with our business needs. The APR comprises a full talent overview across all business areas, ensuring identified employees receive visibility. It also includes structured succession planning for our key positions, which helps us work on our employees' longer term development and performance.

Health and well-being

A key factor in creating a culture of better performance and, by extension, profitability, is providing a healthy working environment. We define healthy as “having the energy to perform at work and live the kind of life you want to live.” While occupational health and safety legislation in the Nordic countries is generally comprehensive, we supplement our employees’ well-being through preventive measures promoting health and supporting active ageing.