A Swede will run mega fashion empire
Ralph Lauren is handing his CEO title to a Swede. The fashion and home decor empire that Lauren founded nearly 50 years ago will be led by Stefan Larsson, effective this November. The New York-based company announced that Stefan Larsson, a Swede who studied at the Swedish School of Economics and Business Administration and Jönköping International Business School in Sweden, currently the global head of Old Navy as CEO. Not surprisingly Larsson was previously part of the executive team at Swedish fashion giant H&M where he was a part of a group responsible for growing H&M, with revenues increasing from about $3 billion to about $17 billion and operations expanding from 12 to 44 countries. "Stefan Larsson is exceptionally talented, and he will bring our company a fresh and exciting global perspective," said Lauren, who will continue to drive the company's vision and strategy as executive chairman and chief creative officer.

Top Swedish and American leaders enjoy reception
World leaders have been in New York for the UN General Assembly and public debate. Many pressing matters are on the agenda, including the global Millennium Development Goals and the Syria crisis. The President and First Lady were given a private reception with Swedish Prime Minister Stephen Löfven and his wife Ulla. Löfven praised Obama for his speech before the General Assembly; and Obama responded in turn by talking about the Scandinavian countries as models in the world when it comes to peace. "If all countries were like the Nordic countries, we would have fewer problems in the world," he said. Löfven will speak before the General Assembly, likely encouraging the UN to work toward faster and more capable action to stop the conflict in Syria.

Swedish businesses implement a six-hour workday
Most westerners have spent decades working an eight-hour workday at the office, spending more time with colleagues than with family. Swedes have challenged this practice before, but new data shows that a six-hour workday can in fact be better; more and more businesses across the country are implementing the change, especially as results are being made known from an experiment started in Gothenburg. The challenge asked employees in a retirement care facility to work fewer hours to improve work-life balance, boost productivity and ultimately cut costs. The Svartedalens retirement home implemented a 6-hour work day for their nurses with no changes to wage. While the experiment will run until 2016 to determine cost effectiveness, other Swedish companies have already made the switch. The oldest examples are several Toyota service centers in Gothenburg that switched to a six-hour day 13 years ago. They have years of data that reveal a lower turnover rate, happier staff — and a 25 percent rise in profits. Stockholm-based app developer Filimundus switched to a six-hour day last year and found it’s easier to focus on the work that needs to be done — and the same amount of productivity goes into each day. "(Employees) were happy leaving the office and happy coming back the next day. They didn’t feel drained or fatigued. People are happier," said Linus Feldt, CEO of Filimundus. As for the nurses in the Svartedalen experiment, they are already much more productive. "I used to be exhausted all the time, I would come home from work and pass out on the sofa,” says Lise-Lotte Pettersson, 41, an assistant nurse. "But not now. I am much more alert; I have much more energy for my work, and also for family life.”