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Danish business culture guide - Learn about Denmark
 

Danish business culture guide - Learn about Denmark

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http://businessculture.org - Find out about business culture in Denmark. This guide is part of the Passport to Trade 2.0 project, which examined European Business culture in 31 countries looking at ...

http://businessculture.org - Find out about business culture in Denmark. This guide is part of the Passport to Trade 2.0 project, which examined European Business culture in 31 countries looking at business communication, business etiquette, business meeting etiquette, internship and student placements, cost of living, work-life-balance and social media guide.

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    Danish business culture guide - Learn about Denmark Danish business culture guide - Learn about Denmark Document Transcript

    •            |  1     businessculture.org Business Culture in Denmark   http://businessculture.org/northerneurope/denmark-business-culture/ Last updated: 6.10.2013 businessculture.org   This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This Content   cannot be publication reflects the view only of the author, and the Commission Denmark   held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
    •            |  2     TABLE  OF  CONTENTS   Business  Culture  in  Denmark  ....................................................................................................  4   Xenophobia: being a foreigner in Denmark .........................................................................................5   International business in Denmark .......................................................................................................5   General Education ................................................................................................................................6   Educational standards ...........................................................................................................................6   Other Issues ...........................................................................................................................................7   Cultural taboos ......................................................................................................................................7   Business  Communication  ..........................................................................................................  8   Face-to-face communication .................................................................................................................8   Language Matters .................................................................................................................................9   Business Relationships ...........................................................................................................................9   Making contact....................................................................................................................................10   Personal Titles .....................................................................................................................................10   Business  Etiquette  ..................................................................................................................  11   Corporate Social Responsibility ..........................................................................................................11   Punctuality ..........................................................................................................................................11   Gift giving ............................................................................................................................................11   Business Dress Code ............................................................................................................................12   Bribery and corruption........................................................................................................................12   Business  Meeting  Etiquette  ....................................................................................................  13   Importance of Business Meeting .........................................................................................................13   Business Meeting planning ..................................................................................................................13   Negotiation process .............................................................................................................................14   Meeting protocol .................................................................................................................................14   How to Run a Business Meeting .........................................................................................................14   Follow up letter after meeting with client............................................................................................15   businessculture.org   Content  Denmark  
    •            |  3     Business meals .....................................................................................................................................15   Business Meeting tips ..........................................................................................................................16   Internship  and  placement  .......................................................................................................  17   Work experience .................................................................................................................................17   Internship and Placement advice ........................................................................................................17   Social security and European health insurance ..................................................................................17   Safety ...................................................................................................................................................18   Do I need a visa? .................................................................................................................................18   Internship and placement salary .........................................................................................................19   Internship and placement accommodation ........................................................................................19   Cost  of  Living  ...........................................................................................................................  20   Money and Banking ............................................................................................................................20   Traveling costs.....................................................................................................................................20   Work-­‐life  Balance   ....................................................................................................................  22   National holidays.................................................................................................................................22   Working hours .....................................................................................................................................23   Health insurance .................................................................................................................................23   Social  Media  Guide  .................................................................................................................  24   Social Media Guide for Denmark .......................................................................................................24   Search and Social Media Marketing for International Business .........................................................24   businessculture.org   Content  Denmark  
    •            |  4     Business  Culture  in  Denmark   Did you know about business culture in Denmark? Watch this video animation to find out some interesting facts. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AyjiHNUOQhI) The Kingdom of Denmark is a Nordic country. Its largest islands, which are connected by bridges and tunnels, are Zealand (Sjaelland), Funen (Fyn) and Jutland (Jylland), which is a peninsula north of Germany. The capital of Denmark is Copenhagen, situated on Zealand, the most densely populated part of the country. Denmark has about 5,4 million inhabitants, an area of c. 43 000 km2 and a coastline of c. 7300 km. Its neighboring countries are Germany, Sweden and Norway. Germany is the only country that Denmark has a land boundary with but there is a bridge connecting Denmark and Sweden. Denmark is a constitutional monarchy and a member state of the European Union (EU). In addition to Denmark itself, the kingdom also includes the Froe Islands and Greenland, which have an autonomous status and are largely self-governed. Denmark is a parliamentary democracy with Queen Margrethe II on the throne. In fact it is the world’s oldest monarchy and belongs to the oldest states in Europe. Historically, Denmark is an agricultural country, but for many years now the production structure has been changing. Denmark relies on a highly developed service sector and large export-oriented industry. Altogether, 72 percent of the Danish workforce is employed in the service sector, which accounts for half of the GDP. Industrial products make up 72 percent of Danish export. Denmark’s most important natural resources are crude oil, natural gas, fish, salt and limestone. Denmark is also known for being among the world’s top countries when it comes to a very diverse range of products and services, including food, furniture and clothing, design businessculture.org   Content  Denmark  
    •              |  5   and interior design, sea transport, windmills, pharmaceuticals, equipment for automatic cooling and heating, sensitive measuring instruments, as well as IT and communications. The welfare system in Denmark is extensive and is financed by one of the highest taxation levels in the world. The basic principle of the model is that all citizens have equal rights to social security. The standard of living in Denmark is high and the differences between rich and poor are small. When it comes to the Danish weather, in the summertime it does not get too hot while the winters remain relatively mild. In February, Denmark’s coldest month, the mean temperature is 0°C and in July the average temperature is 20°C. In recent years the temperature in summer has risen to 30°C. There is not too much variation between day and night temperatures. When going to Denmark be prepared for rain, since in Copenhagen it rains on average 170 days a year. As in other Nordic countries, the winters are dark and the summers are light. On the shortest days there are only 7, 5 hours of daylight, whereas in the summer when the days are longest, the sun shines for more than 18 hours. Denmark belongs to the Central European Time (CET) –zone, which means that the time in Denmark in the summer is GMT+2 and in the winter GMT+1. Xenophobia:  being  a  foreigner  in  Denmark   Danes are considered helpful, open and tolerant by foreigners and are interested in asking questions about the other’s culture and country. However, Danes will often shy away from conversations that involve more personal topics, unless they know their colleagues well. In Denmark, great emphasis is placed on equality and the ideal that everyone is equal and must have the same rights and respect regardless of their social or ethnic background. Racist and discriminatory jokes are regarded as being very rude. This tolerant atmosphere makes it easy for a foreigner to settle in, but tolerance is also expected on the part of the visitor. Of the religions in Denmark, the most prominent is the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Denmark (95 % of the population) which is the official state religion. Other faiths include Roman Catholics (3%) and Muslims. In general, Danes are not very religious, with church attendance generally being low. International  business  in  Denmark   When doing business in a foreign country you need to be prepared to experience things that are different from your own culture. Without proper preparation and planning you may find yourself experiencing ‘culture shock’ that may have a negative influence on your business dealings. It is understandable that as an active business person you can only invest a limited amount of time in the exploration of cultural differences. Sometimes it is only a few hours after landing in a new country that you find yourself in a meeting room talking business. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  6   General  Education   The excellent reputation of the Danish labour force can to a large extent be ascribed to the traditional awareness in Denmark of the importance of education. The general education system enjoys high priority and receives substantial public funding. In Denmark, equal access to education is the overriding principle. Currently 14.8% of public finance is devoted to the educational sector, of which around 19.4% is spent on higher education. The result is a welleducated population with a high proportion of university graduates. Great emphasis is placed on lifelong access to education, and Denmark is particularly noted for producing highly skilled technicians and engineers. The basic education in Denmark consists of nine years of mandatory schooling for everyone. Most of the children attend public schools. There is also a wide variety of private schools available. Today, 83% of young people complete a secondary education programme. Higher education is delivered by the university sector, which offers research based undergraduate and graduate programmes, as well as a parallel sector for professional bachelor and diploma programmes and more business oriented programmes. These days about 40% of the population completes higher education. In addition, great emphasis is placed on providing further education to the large proportion of the current workforce educated only to elementary level and this is one of the reasons why Danish businesses can maintain their competitiveness at a high level. The Danish education system focuses on maintaining an equal dialogue between students and teachers, and the informal tone is a feature noted by many foreigners. Boys and girls are taught together, and there are both male and female teachers. Computer literacy in Denmark is good. The use of mobile phones and the Internet is more widespread in Scandinavia than anywhere else in Europe and is on a par with the US. Whether it comes to private persons or companies, the IT infrastructure of Denmark belongs to the world’s best. In the overall results for the eEurope 2005 Index Denmark comes out as no. 1. According to a recent study, Denmark has the highest rate of Internet penetration, mobile phone penetration and e-business implementation in Europe, together with the highest IT spending level per capita in the world. In 2012, 92 percent of Danes had internet access and 85 percent had broadband connections. This has naturally increased the possibilities for distance working and sharing knowledge more effectively, even across national borders. Many municipalities have purchased iPads for school children from the 5th to 10th grades in order to make teaching more varied and effective. One should keep in mind that there are still variations in skills, perhaps across age groups where there may be older executives who are not using the new technology therefore, you should always check first, which method of communication is preferred by the company you are in contact with. Educational  standards   When doing business in a foreign country it is advantageous to have some knowledge about the language abilities and computer competency of your counterparts. This may prove to be particularly useful in the preparation stage of negotiations as it may help to decide whether it is safe to rely on a host speaking your language or whether it is necessary to travel with an nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  7   interpreter. Competence in computer technology and electronic communication may significantly increase the pace of the business negotiations. Some knowledge about your business partner’s computer literacy may help you to adjust your expectations and also to adjust the level of technology you incorporate into your business activities which may in turn help you to save valuable time and money. Other  Issues     The Danes are a peaceful and rather unassertive nation. They possess a satirical and selfdeprecating sense of humor. To many Danes, humor is tinged with a great deal of irony and whilst foreigners often have a hard time understanding this it is nevertheless an important part of Danish humor anda key to understanding their mentality. Danes have a deep-rooted respect for democracy and equality and are extremely tolerant. The society has a successful, wellorganized social structure, a sound economy, a high level of education, and an acceptance of gender equality and sexual orientation. Informality is typical in business life. There are no strict hierarchies between employees and management and it is common for employees to address their boss by his or her first name. Manners between colleagues are informal and relaxed. The ‘cozy way of life’ can also be seen in the dress code. Often it is only formal meetings that require a suit. Wealth and high social position are played down in public as regards dress, jewelry, and housing. The point is to be discreet about individual distinction and avoid public boasting, while allowing one’s wealth to be recognized by persons in a similar economic position. Discussion and argument are central in Danish upbringing, in both social contexts and at home. Negotiations and team work are highly prizedin Danish working life and democratic processes and structures are central to the Danish mentality. Danish labour markets are very flexible and job mobility is high. It has been reported by the EU Commission that one out of five Danish employees, about 20%, changed their job in 2012. A high degree of job mobility indicates that the labour market is healthy and flexible. This flexibility however, is due partly to the fact that it is rather easy to make people redundant in Denmark and partly to an efficient and active labour market policy. The Danish workforce is among the most productive in Europe and no restrictions apply regarding overtime work, allowing companies to operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Cultural  taboos   Danes are considered to be tolerant and so what is classed as undesirable behavior is usually something that violates the codes of tolerance. For example, the use of sexist or racist humor is considered very rude. Modesty in conversation and behaviour is also respected. The Danes tend to dislike materialism and displays of individual achievement. You should show appreciation for the Danish love of hospitality and ‘coziness’, and make sure business events also include social activities. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  8   Business  Communication   In the current era of intensive globalisation, the marketplace is growing at a fast pace. This means expanding business borders and sometimes customising business practices. The subsections that follow give an overview of Denmark’s business practice to give a comprehensive picture of doing business in Denmark. Regardless of the situation and place, communicating without creating barriers can only be an advantage and bring benefits. Face-­‐to-­‐face  communication   Communication with the Danes is generally informal and marked by humor and goodwill, so try to maintain a modest and low-key approach. It is common for the Danes to maintain some distance and unpretentiousness is a keyword in social interaction. You will rarely hear someone promote themselves or their own skills. On the contrary, people tend to underplay their own role and qualifications. Danish business people can appear somewhat formal at first, but they are soon likely to show the more informal side of themselves. Most Danes speak to their colleagues with an open heart about their private life. They talk about their family and what they do in their holidays and spare time. However, in meetings they are likely to get down to business right away and are generally conservative and efficient in their approach. Handshakes (with men, women and children) are the accepted form of greeting and Danes shake hands both for greetings upon arrival and departure from a meeting. Handshakes should be firm and short and eye contact should be maintained while shaking hands. Unlike in the United States, men do not stand when a woman enters or leaves a room. Business cards are exchanged but there is no single correct procedure to do this. Business cards should include the street address of your company, not only the post code. You will find that Danes start to use first names quickly. However, you should not use first names yourself until you are invited to do so. Meetings play a crucial role in Danish business culture as they are the most common way to keep people up to date. Danes like to keep it simple and meetings to be short and wellstructured – the less paperwork, the better. However, it is still important for Danes that a written agenda is followed and that all the most important agreements and decisions are recorded in a written summary. Danes have a reputation for being informal and they favour a humorous and extrovert tone at work. Danish workplaces are characterised by an absence of the hierarchical structure found in many other countries. The line of command between the boss and the employees is short, and in principle everyone – regardless of education, position or social status – is regarded as equal. It is common for employees to address their boss by her or his first name. Team work is common and open dialogue is promoted. The Danes value their bodily integrity. They are not very fond of being touched by strangers (keep a minimum distance of 30 centimeters). nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  9     Language  Matters   The official language is Danish, which is one of the Nordic languages. Danish, Swedish and Norwegian are all very similar and the three languages are understood by each of the country’s populations. English is taught as a mandatory language in elementary school and is spoken and understood by approximately 80 % of the population. English is also used as a corporate language in many of the larger firms. It can even be said that English is a second language for some. Virtually all Danish business people have a good working knowledge of English and interpreters are rarely required. Emails are often written in English from the beginning to make it possible to involve colleagues or partners in other countries. In many sectors, the professional terminology is in English anyway, making the language the natural choice for everyday written communication. Additionally, some Danes, mainly middle aged people, speak and understand German, young people however, do not learn German as a mandatory language in school anymore. As stated above, Danish, Norwegian and Swedish are very much alike, and are understood by each of the countries’ populations. German is recognized as a protected minority language in the south of Jutland. French is spoken by one in ten Danes. Here are some useful phrases, which may help you to ‘break the ice’ in informal conversations. • • • • • • • • • • • • • Hello: Goddag / Hej Goodbye: Farvel Yes: Ja No: Nej Thank you: Tak What’s your name? – Hvad hedder du? My name is John. – Jeg hedder John. Where are you from? – Hvor kommer du fra? I’m from London. – Jeg kommer fra London. I don’t speak Danish. – Jeg taler ikke dansk. Men: Herrer Women: Damer The city centre: centrum. Business  Relationships   There are no formal requirements for the formation of a contract. Offers, acceptances and contracts may be made orally, but a written contract is preferable. In the case of a dispute, the courts tend to interpret the contracts subjectively and look behind the wording to find out the original intentions of the parties. It is important to create a good personal relationship with your business partner in order to reach a decision, although Danes do tend to be quite pragmatic in their business dealings. This would suggest that any shortcomings in personal relationships can be overcome, depending on the facts and good argument. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  10   Making  contact   In accordance with Danish society, Danish work environments are seldom based upon hierarchies and formalities between various levels of management and as such, all workers, whether they be the top manager or the cleaner, are considered equally important. Danes are hardworking people and are keen that each minute spent at work is productive and used effectively. It is therefore important to arrive on time for both work and meetings. Handshakes (with men, women and children) are the accepted form of greeting. Danes shake hands both for greetings upon arrival and departure from a meeting. Business people should not routinely expect to meet with their Danish counterparts after 4 pm on weekdays. Do not plan meetings for Saturdays, Sundays, or on national holidays. Not all Danes appreciate breakfast meetings, which should be scheduled only with due consideration to the particular situation. Danish business introductions are a formal and solemn exchange. If you are sitting and being introduced to a new contact or associate, be sure to stand up before extending your hand. Offer a firm handshake as you make eye contact. Any effort that you make to include a Danish greeting into your introduction [e.g., "Goddag" meaning "Good Day"] will be appreciated. Denmark is basically a small and homogeneous country but naturally people living in different parts of the country have their own local identities as well. For instance, people living in the capital are quite distinct from those living in more rural areas. Seen from the outside, however, there are still some distinctive common features among all Danes. Spoken Danish varies considerably in pronunciation from region to region. However, there are not many who still speak pure dialects; most speak variants of them. The dialects are understood by people from other areas. In south Jutland there is a small minority of German speakers. In many Danish companies, bosses are seen more as team leaders and group facilitators as opposed to being the key decision makers that delegate tasks to others. As such, employees are often encouraged to express their opinions freely at meetings and everyone’s opinion is given consideration when making decisions. However, the final decision ultimately often lies in the hands of the group leader. Personal  Titles   It is appropriate to use a person’s title until the use of first names has been indicated as being appropriate. Use professional titles when applicable. Otherwise, use the following Danish courtesy titles. Hr: Mr., Fru: Mrs., Froken: Miss. As outlined above, Danes tend to use first names quite early on in a business relationship. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  11     Business  Etiquette     Attitudes and values form the basis of any particular culture reflecting the way people think and behave. Knowledge of these aspects can therefore be of significant importance if you wish to communicate effectively with your counterparts. Ignorance of these issues can result in a cultural barrier that may inhibit the communication process and have a detrimental effect on the success of your activities in a given country. Corporate  Social  Responsibility   Denmark is no newcomer to issues like human rights. The country has a strong tradition of addressing issues such as freedom of speech and religion, children’s rights, the fight against racism and discrimination of minorities. Now Denmark has also started to pay increasing attention to corporate social responsibility (CSR) and in doing so is following the example set by other European countries. All the largest stated-owned and private companies and institutional investors have to account for their social responsibility and must include information on CSR in their annual reports. An action plan concerning CSR has been launched by the government of Denmark and comprises four areas, three of which are directly related to CSR issues. These four areas include 30 initiatives in total. The three areas directly related to CSR are: • • • promoting business-driven CSR promoting CSR through state activities encouraging businesses in taking environmental responsibility The goal for this action plan is not only to further social responsibility but also to create new business opportunities through the increased competiveness that comes from gaining a solid reputation in CSR issues. Punctuality   Danes take punctuality for business meetings very seriously and expect that you will do likewise. These are hardworking people who desire that each minute spent on the job is productive and used effectively. It is therefore important to arrive on time for both work and meetings. You should make a call with an explanation if you are delayed since meetings will begin and end punctually. This is also the case when attending social meetings. Gift  giving   It is rare to bring gifts to business meetings, but when you are invited to someone’s private home, you should bring flowers or a couple of bottles of red wine. Unlike in many other countries, here roses are acceptable gifts for your host or hostess. Nevertheless, be sure you don’t give white roses, because this color is associated with mourning. If you do give flowers, nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  12     be sure they are presented wrapped. Other suitable gifts include a box of fine chocolates or desk items bearing your company’s logo. There is strict legislation regarding business gifts in Denmark. While it is not common practice to give gifts at business meetings, it is not completely forbidden either. If it looks as though business is going well, then a very small gift may be given to your contact after agreements have been signed. If you happen to receive a gift in return, you should open it in front of the person rather than waiting. Business  Dress  Code   The informal attitude of the Danes is expressed in a generally relaxed but still conservative dress code. While many men prefer a suit and tie, it is not uncommon to see businessmen in more casual clothing, especially when meeting contacts they already know. Women also dress relatively casually, however, it is always advisable to pay some attention to your choice of clothes and err on the conservative side. When you are in Denmark, the easiest and safest way to dress is in a polished yet understated way. You are expected to appear professional and well dressed, and you should keep everything low-key. Neatness and cleanliness are essential. Suits are not as common as they are for example in the US, but in doing business with high-ranking executives they are expected. Women often wear pant suits to work. If invited to a Danish home for an informal get together, clean jeans and an open-neck or sports shirt are acceptable. Be sure to pack clothes for the cool, rainy weather, which you are likely to encounter. High-ranking Danish executives often host black-tie dinners. Male executives should seriously consider bringing a tuxedo along, while women will need an evening gown if you anticipate such an invitation. Bribery  and  corruption   According to the annual survey by the Berlin-based organization Transparency International, in the year 2005, Denmark was perceived as being the world’s fourth least corrupt country (after Iceland, Finland and New Zealand). Denmark also has one of the lowest crime rates in the world and this makes the country attractive as a business environment for foreign investment. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  13   Business  Meeting  Etiquette     Importance  of  Business  Meeting   Business meetings start and end at agreed times and normally hands are shaken both before and after the meetings. Business meetings play a significant role in the Danish way of doing business, as the most common way of keeping people up to date. Danes like to keep it simple and meetings to be short and well-structured with as little paperwork as possible. However, a written agenda will be followed and all the most important agreements and decisions recorded in a written summary to be circulated following the meeting. Danes are easy-going, flexible and patient in negotiations, and are good listeners known for their ability to secure good deals without making enemies. There is strict legislation on the topic of business gifts in Denmark. While it is not common to give gifts at business meetings, it is not forbidden either. If it looks as though business is going well, then a very small gift may be given to your contact after agreements have been signed. If you happen to receive a gift in return, feel free to open it in front of the other person rather than waiting. Business  Meeting  planning   You should always arrange your appointments with your Danish business partners well in advance (at least two weeks before the actual meeting). The most common holiday months for Danes are July and August and therefore you should avoid trying to arrange any meetings at that particular time. In both business and social engagements, Danes are punctual and they expect you to be punctual too. When preparing for a meeting, send an agenda in advance to your Danish business partner. The meetings might begin with some small-talk, but then Danes get straight right to the point. Despite maintaining professional standards of behavior at all times, they are tolerant, relaxed and informal, tending to be quite frank in the way they speak since direct communication is perceived as being sincere and honest. Organizations differ, but in general there will be a secretary or PA who controls the diary of the manager you are visiting. The best way to set up a meeting is to arrange it with this person, and then call the day before to confirm your attendance. You are advised to check in advance if any resources or equipment that you require are available. This will help prevent delays or embarrassment at the actual meeting. Danes treasure their leisure time, most of which is spent with their family and would not generally be available for meetings after 4 pm on weekdays. Similarly, do not plan meetings for Saturdays, Sundays, or on national holidays. Breakfast meetings are not the norm in Denmark and should only be set up if appropriate to the particular situation. Should you wish to discuss business during a meal, lunch time might be the best option. If you are planning to set up a business lunch, it should take place sometime between noon and 2 pm. Remember that long business lunches are uncommon in Denmark. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  14   Meetings are always expected to start and end at the agreed time. Negotiation  process   If you are doing business in Denmark which involves negotiations, come well prepared. The Danes are meticulous when it comes to analyzing information and proposals. Bring a wealth of written information for your Danish counterpart to examine. Presentations should be factual and well-organized. Having the ‘gift of the gab’ will get you nowhere if it is not supported by logical, rational and proven evidence. They also value a critical approach and will not hesitate to express their dissenting opinions. This is not considered rude in Denmark and you should not be offended by it. Criticism is regarded as something that has to do with one’s work and is not a personal attack. It is possible to have fun together immediately afterwards. It is important to spend some time discussing and arguing with your Danish counterpart to build up the relationship of trust that is necessary before a Dane will enter into an agreement with a new business partner. There is usually a maximum of 10 minutes of ‘small talk’ at the beginning of the meetings. After that the Danes tend to get to the point quickly and focus intensively on the business at hand. Meeting  protocol   Handshakes (with men and women) are the accepted form of greeting in Denmark. Greet all participants with firm handshakes and direct eye contact upon arrival and leaving. Unlike in the United States, men do not stand when a woman enters or leaves a room. The Danes are modest people in public. They tend to be very low-key. In order to fit in with their behaviour, subdue yourself a bit, especially if you are animated by nature. The key to being accepted and respected in Denmark is to blend in rather than stand out. When talking to a Dane, stand at least two arms lengths away to give him or her enough distance and do not touch except when shaking hands. How  to  Run  a  Business  Meeting   When running a meeting it is important to remember that the Danes tend to be matter of fact and businesslike in their conduct and they appreciate dialogue and the idea of democracy. It is normal to discuss subjects thoroughly in order to reach an agreement. It is not common – as it is in the US and the UK – to resolve matters by vote. Rather, people discuss in order to achieve consensus and to see matters from all possible perspectives. Agendas for a meeting are sent out in advance and they are generally adhered to. The Danes are punctual. They do not believe in hierarchy and will not respect it in their business dealings (indeed, this is the only area in which they refuse to compromise). They are easy-going, flexible and patient in negotiations, and are good listeners, known for their ability to secure win – win deals. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  15     Virtually all Danish business people have a good working knowledge of English and interpreters are rarely required. Follow  up  letter  after  meeting  with  client   The minutes of meetings will be circulated after the meeting has concluded. Action plans of what has been agreed and who is responsible for taking actions will be indicated on the minutes. In individual meetings, a record should be kept of what was discussed, and the dates items were agreed to be completed by i.e. deadlines. It is important, in order to maintain credibility, that actions are followed up and completed in the timescales agreed. If this is not followed through diligently, it may affect the attendance at future meetings. Many executives will be impressed by a prompt follow up of actions agreed at a meeting. If you feel that it is appropriate, you can invite your business associates out for a drink. This may be a good time to get to know each other better and build up a stronger relationship. Business  meals   Danes usually have breakfast at home with their families, so they do not expect to conduct any business during this meal. Lunch is the most common mealtime during which to conduct business negotiations and is usually served from noon to 2 pm. Open-faced sandwiches are typical foods for this meal and long business lunches are uncommon. Dinner, the main meal of the day, is served from 6 to 8 pm. The evening meal may consist of meats, fish, vegetables, and dessert. Drinks served with dinner are usually regional beers or wine. Danes eat most of their meals at home and in private settings, although public dining places ranging from small hot dog stands to fancy restaurants are available and are used. Lunch at a work place, school, or institution is either homemade or available from kitchens or canteens, offering open sandwiches, hot meals, or a buffet table. Lunch may also be bought at butcher’s shops, cafes, and sandwich bars. If you are invited to a dinner at your business partner’s home, you should bring flowers or a couple of bottles of red wine. If your spouse has travelled to Denmark with you, the invitation will most likely include him or her. If you are invited to dinner, typically, you will be ushered straight to the table. If drinks are served before dinner, however, they will usually be set out in the living room, and will most probably consist of white wine. Drinks are more common after dinner, as is coffee and beer. Expect to remain at the table for a long time. Danish dinners can last as long as four hours. You should not leave the table before your host or hostess as this would appear rude. After the meal, you will probably be expected to stay a while for drinks and conversation. The dining etiquette is very much the same as in most other European countries. Table manners are Continental. The best rule for most situations is to use common sense, general dining manners and simply follow the host’s / hostess’s lead. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  16   Some restaurants, usually the larger ones, add a service charge. Waiters do not expect a tip, but appreciate one. It is quite acceptable for women to pay the bill in a restaurant and for them to initiate meetings and even social engagements with men. Smørrebrød (open sandwiches) is possibly the best known dish from Denmark. Basically, it is rye bread that is buttered and covered with sliced meat, cheese, etc. Otherwise, Denmark has made few original contributions to gastronomy. Among those that should be mentioned are wienerbrød (Danish pastry) and kransekage (almond cake rings), æblekage (apple charlotte) with fried breadcrumbs and fruit preserves. Business  Meeting  tips   Even if the Danes do tend to get straight down to business in meetings, it is still appropriate to start the meeting with about 10 minutes of informal conversation. Most Danish business people have good skills in English and interpreters are rarely needed. The Danish mentality can be described by the words “hygge” and humorous. The term “hygge” is difficult to translate, but those seeking to grasp its meaning will discover that it is closely associated with having a good time together and with eating and drinking. Humour is an essential element of everyday living. To many Danes, humour comes with irony which may be difficult for many foreigners to appreciate, but it is absolutely essential if you want to understand the Danish mentality. It is important for North Americans to know that in Denmark dates are written in the following way: the day first, then the month, then the year [e.g. October 21, 2013, is written 21.10.13.]. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  17     Internship  and  placement     Work  experience   Nordic citizens are free to study, work and reside in Denmark. Citizens from other EU/EEA countries including Switzerland may in some cases be subject to special rules. A foreigner can work and reside in Denmark as an intern as soon as a permit has been granted. In cases where a work permit is needed, it is your own responsibility to acquire one. Programs such as Erasmus and Leonardo da Vinci offer students the opportunity to apply for a placement grant. Erasmus and Leonardo da Vinci however are not providers of internships but programmes that enable the movement of students between different countries. Internship  and  Placement  advice   There are many practical issues related to international placements that need to be taken care of either by the trainee or the host company. It is important to allow enough time for all the arrangements and the necessary formalities. Training organisations, educational institutes and home and host organisations will be able to help with the formalities. Social  security  and  European  health  insurance   When going to Denmark it is important to bear in mind that you are responsible for insuring yourself and your property. Your educational institution has no responsibility or liability and it is recommended that you have the following three insurances: • • • Accident insurance Home insurance Third-party liability insurance (for covering expenses in case you have to compensate another person) In addition to these insurances, if you have a car, this must also be insured (compulsory insurance). The Danish healthcare system is extensive and offers access to all residents including foreign students. However physiotherapy and dental care are not accessible free of charge. In the case of emergency, by dialing 112 you will be able to contact the ambulance, police and fire brigade. Be prepared to give the call centre your name, the phone number from which you are calling and your location. Non – EU/EEA Students Everybody in Denmark, including non-residents, is entitled to free emergency care. However, if non-urgent medical treatment is needed, this must be paid by your insurance or by you. If nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  18     you are staying in Denmark for longer than 3 months, you will need to register with the Civil Registration System and get a residence permit which will then make you eligible for free medical treatment. EU/EEA or Switzerland Students If you are a citizen of EU/EAA or Switzerland and you are going to stay in Denmark for no more than 3 months, you can access the same healthcare services as Danish nationals with your European Health Insurance Card, free of charge. If you are staying in Denmark for longer than 3 months and you have registered with the Civil Registration System as outlined above, you are entitled to use the healthcare system just as a Dane would. To register with the Civil Registration System you need to have a valid EHIC card and or present a S1 Portable Document and an E106 form. Safety   Do not be afraid to contact the police and other authorities in Denmark, since not only are the crime and corruption rates low, but the whole Danish way of living has its foundation in tolerance and mutual trust. Do  I  need  a  visa?   Visas in Denmark, as in other Schengen countries, are issued for stays of less than 3 months. If you are a resident of another Schengen country, you do not need to worry about visas when coming to Denmark. However, if you are in Denmark with a visa, you are not allowed to work during your stay. If you intend to stay in Denmark for longer than three months and you need to get a visa to enter Denmark, then you are required to apply for a residence permit before you enter the country. You cannot apply for a visa and a residence permit at the same time. In order to get a residence permit in Denmark as a non-EU/EEA citizen you will have to supply evidence of certain things in writing: • • • • • You must have been accepted as a student by a higher education progamme at an institute, college or university that has been approved by the Danish government. You must be able to prove that you are in Denmark either to attend a programme that you have begun in your home country or to complete an entire educational programme. You will need to prove that you have sufficient funds to maintain yourself during your stay in Denmark. If there are tuition fees you will need to have covered the expenses of the first semester of your studies. You will need to be able to communicate in Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, German or English. If you are a citizen of any EU/EAA country or Switzerland you do not need a residence permit at all. However, if staying for longer than three months, EU/EEA citizens need to get a nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  19   registration certificate and Swiss citizens a residence card. These documents serve more as proof of your rights to reside in Denmark and are available from the Regional State Administration (Statsforvaltningen). If you are working while staying in Denmark, you can stay for six months without the need to get registration certificates or cards. Internship  and  placement  salary   Most of the time interns working in Denmark are paid but not always and in these cases you will need to have documentation to show that you have enough resources to cover your stay in Denmark. Accepted documentation can be documents for student grants or scholarships and bank statements. An intern should have 5662 DKK per month at his/her disposal so as not to run into difficulties. Internship  and  placement  accommodation   During the months of August and September it is recommended that you make sure to reserve a room before arriving to Denmark, since finding housing, especially in bigger cities, can be extremely difficult. You should contact your host institution in Denmark regarding housing options as they can offer much needed help. As a student you should be able to get by with housing expenses of around 2500-4000 DKK per month. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  20     Cost  of  Living     Denmark’s standard of living is one the world’s highest in the world and therefore it is no surprise that the cost of living is not cheap. However, when keeping consumption sensible by following local customs such as eating at home and cycling, living in Denmark should not be impossible on a budget. Here are some examples of Danish prices: • • • • • Typical rent per month for students is around 2500-4000 DKK Enjoying coffee at a café costs around 25 – 40 DKK Enjoying a soft drink or a beer at a bar costs around 30-50 DKK Going to movies is around 80 DKK Dining out costs around 200 DKK Money  and  Banking   When going to Denmark for a longer stay, it is advisable to open a bank account in the country. However, before this is possible you will need a Danish CPR (ID) number. When opening a bank account, make sure to bring your CPR and ID cards with you so that the process is simple and straightforward. When coming to Denmark, it is good practice to make sure beforehand that you have enough cash at your disposal that you are able to cover all the costs associated with moving to another country such as rent and deposit for your accommodation, some household items etc. If you have a bank account with an international bank, the chances are that your credit card will also be valid in Denmark. However, it is a good thing to double-check this to be on the safe side. When opening a Danish bank account, discuss the matter with your Danish bank and they will talk you through the process. In any case you will need to have a ‘Nemkonto’ (easy account) in order for public authorities to make payments into your account. Traveling  costs   Denmark’s location for travelers is excellent as it offers easy access to Europe and the rest of Scandinavia. By plane, cities such as Barcelona, Vienna, Rome, London are just a few hours away. In addition, Denmark is known for having a great transport infrastructure that makes exploring the country and its areas of outstanding natural beauty easy. Most cities can be reached by bus, train or ferry. As in many other countries, a common pricing and zoning system is used. One thing worth mentioning is that Copenhagen has one of the most advanced underground systems in the entire world as it is fully-automated and operates throughout the day. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  21   When coming to Denmark, it is a good idea to get a bicycle since cycling is the most common way for Danes to get around whether living in big cities or small towns. Statistics confirm that every third working Dane in Copenhagen travels to work by bicycle each day. Furthermore, every day 1, 1 million kilometres are pedalled by the people of Copenhagen which has 350 km of cycle lanes. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  22   Work-­‐life  Balance     Family is very important to Danes and therefore balancing work and domestic life is not too complex. A normal working week is from Monday to Friday and office hours are usually between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Women work an average of 35 hours a week compared to 41 hours a week for men. As the family life of employees is generally respected by Danish employers, it is not uncommon for many Danish workplaces to give you the opportunity to adjust your working hours based on your family’s needs. It is quite usual for Danes to live relatively close to their place of work which means that less time is spent on commuting. Most workers hurry home after finishing work on time and family members normally gather together for supper. This is why business negotiations tend to take place at lunch instead of dinner although long business lunches are uncommon. Danes value their spare time highly which means that when they work, they work intensively but leave quite early to go home. Business people should not routinely expect to meet with their Danish counterparts after 4 p.m. on weekdays. Do not plan meetings for Saturdays, Sundays, or on national holidays. Not all Danes appreciate breakfast meetings, which should only be scheduled with due consideration to the particular situation. People in higher positions often have the opportunity to work flexible hours and suit their working hours to their other needs. Danes also have the right to five weeks’ holiday a year, of which three weeks can always be taken consecutively during the school summer vacation period. Children are prioritized in Danish society and they are given space. Danes raise their kids in a way that puts an emphasis on such things as participation in decision-making and dialogue. All small children aged 0-6 in Denmark are offered day care, either in a Kindergarden or in a private home. The Danish work environment reflects many aspects within Danish culture such as equality and tolerance. There is a tradition for delegating responsibility, allowing employees to participate in decision- making and investing in their further education and competence development. The well-developed welfare system enables women to participate fully in the labour market. Denmark is one of the most progressive countries in the world with regard to gender equality within the work place and it has the greatest percentage of women working outside the home in comparison to other European countries. The participation rate of women is therefore high and many women (around 19%) hold top positions in Danish companies. National  holidays   Mandatory vacation is five weeks and up to five more days per year plus local holidays. At least three weeks are taken during the summer. School summer vacation is from about June 20th to about August 8th, and generally, business is slow during that period as many executives are out of the office. Some companies close completely. It is not advisable to schedule business meetings or other business activities in Denmark from late June to early August, from December 20th – January 5th, or during Easter week. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •              |  23   Working  hours   A normal working week runs from Monday to Friday and office hours are usually between 8 a.m. or 8.30 a.m. and 5 p.m. Women work an average of 35 hours a week compared to 41 hours a week worked by men. However, 9 percent of the Danish workforce works more than 49 hours a week. Working overtime is often compensated by time off in lieu. There is no legislation regulating working hours in the private sector, but individual contracts and collective labour agreements take care of settling working hours. An employee should not be made to work in excess of an average of 48 hours a week over the course of a 4 month period, following the EU Working Time directive. Danish lunch breaks are often just 30 minutes long and instead of going home you would usually have lunch with your colleagues. Many bigger companies have canteen facilities, while in other places you have either to bring your own lunch or buy take away food. Health  insurance   In the case of emergency or where urgent help is required, you should dial 112. Hospital assitance is available and accessible for everyone staying in Denmark in the case of emergencies, accidents and the sudden worsenings of illnesses. Although emergency medical treatment is free of charge, the patient will be charged for follow-up care. Therefore, it is advisable to have travel insurance to cover any extra costs. The nationals of the European Economic Area (EEA) who are covered by the public health insurance of that country will be similarly covered by public health insurance when they move to Denmark. If you move from a non-Nordic country which is not a member of the EC/EAA you will normally have a six week quarantine period before having access to public health services. Denmark has a state-run health system. Financing, planning and management are the responsibility of the authorities. The services are financed through income tax and there is only one legal state-run health insurance. If you are domiciled in Denmark and you are paying taxes, you will also be insured in Denmark. No separate health insurance fees have to be paid. The public health care service (health insurance) covers hospitalization and medical consultations and also subsidizes medicines and a range of treatments. nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  24     Social  Media  Guide     Social  Media  Guide  for  Denmark   With three million Facebook users Denmark’s Facebook penetration is 54 percent. Over 62 percent of Danes are internet users. Although it is common for Danes to engage in social media, many companies have failed to make use of Twitter, Facebook and other social media platforms. The importance of social media has often not been recognized nor its potential fully exploited, even by the largest Danish companies and their CEOs. As a result, for most Danish companies, social media is more about branding the company than interacting with clients, and the responsibility for social media activities rests largely on the shoulders of the HR or marketing departments. Despite this, it is not uncommon for companies to monitor what is going on in the social media scene. Although company managers might not be the most enthusiastic users of social media platforms, Danes on average are well-acquainted with the ins and outs of Facebook, Twitter and other platforms. For example, in the European Championship of 2012 Danish football players were banned from using social media tools during the tournament. Pensioners are now also being offered IT courses since all communication with municipalities will be transferred to electronic mail in 2014. Search  and  Social  Media  Marketing  for  International  Business   Learn how to use social media for business from one of Salford Business School’s latest business management courses. The course was jointly researched by the Passport to Trade 2.0 project team and prepared in collaboration with some of the leading digital marketing agencies in the UK. This Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) can help businesses and individuals to make the best use of search and social media platforms. The course is called Search and Social Media Marketing for International Business and is applicable to students looking for placements abroad as well as businesses thinking about new trade links; it comprises the following twelve topics: How to develop a personal brand online (1/12) • • nessculture.org     Whether you are a student beginning a job search or a business person planning a new business venture, personal branding can make a difference. Learn about personal branding and why it is important for you. Content  Denmark  
    •            |  25     http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=l9LYw0mgtn4&feature=player _embedded How to use Twitter (2/12) • • Learn the basics of using Twitter to develop an individual or business profile. Remember to use hash tag #SSMMUoS to share your learning journey on this course so far! http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=9CVY3pp91Dc&feature=playe r_embedded How to use Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) (3/12) • • Learn the principles of SEO to ensure that your website and any social media profiles are found by individuals searching for your name, products and services. These basic principles of SEO include keyword research, on-page optimisation and off-page optimisation. http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=zw27cRcwtM0&feature=player _embedded How to use social media for international business development (4/12) • • Social media networks break down the traditional country barriers, but do you know which networks are relevant for the country you are interested in trading with? Find out in this video how to identify the relevant networks and what social media strategies you might be able to use on these networks. http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=Bx-B56AHS4c&feature= nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  26     player_embedded How to use Facebook (5/12) • • Facebook is currently the largest social media network in the world and it can benefit you as a business as well as an individual. Learn how to develop a Facebook business page and see how other businesses use it and what strategies work for them. http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=UmRGn-vdcO8&feature= player_embedded How to use YouTube (6/12) • • YouTube was identified as the second largest social network amongst younger internet users as part of the Passport to Trade 2.0 project. Learn how to optimise your video content in order to reach wider audiences for your profile. http://www.youtube.com/watch? feature=player_embedded&v=G2 0OVpmTBss How to use LinkedIn (7/12) • • LinkedIn is one of the three main professional social networks – the others being Xing and Viadeo which are also popular in several European countries. Learn how to make the most of LinkedIn for your profile. http://www.youtube.com/watch? nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  27     v=N6e_EAUQqic&feature=playe r_embedded How to use Google+ (8/12) • • • Google+ is the second largest social network as of January 2013. It is one of the fastest growing social networks and one that has the biggest impact when it comes to search engine results integration for anyone who uses Google as their main search engine. Learn how to make the most of Google+ for you and your digital profiles. http://www.youtube.com/watch? feature=player_embedded&v=8ti 3SPHkEWw How to use copywriting online (9/12) • • Copywriting is a process of translating technical specifications and product descriptions into engaging and understandable customer focused text. Learn about the basic techniques in structuring your online content here. http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=5f1hx_f2ONI&feature=player_ embedded How to stay legal on social media (10/12) • • Everything and anything you do and say online can be potentially viewed by anyone who has internet access. Always respect the law and familiarise yourself with new options offered to you through a creative commons licence which is popular online. http://www.youtube.com/watch? nessculture.org     Content  Denmark  
    •            |  28     v=eQxDpiHsdk&feature=player_embedde d How to use monitoring and reporting (11/12) • • Whether you are an individual or a business spending time on social media – there has to be a return on your engagement online. How do you justify your engagement on social media to your boss? Listen to the industry experts in this area and see what you might be able to measure in respect of your on-line engagements. http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=LbEq7jsG0jg&feature=player_ embedded How to blog (12/12) • • http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=OqVjR7oI8Rs&feature=player _embedded nessculture.org     • Blogging is a process of writing text and sharing content with others. It can help your customers or friends to keep in-touch regardless of social media platforms. Think about the voice you might want to adopt and who your audience might be. Share your thoughts with us by writing a blog post about this MOOC. Tweet us the link to your post on the #SSMMUoS Twitter hash tag. Content  Denmark  
    •              |  29   Passport  to  Trade  2.0  Project  Partnership   Five Universities: Lead partner: Salford Business School, University of Salford, United Kingdom Elena Vasilieva Aleksej Heinze Alex Fenton URENIO research unit at Aristole University of Thessaloniki, Greece Christina Kakderi Nitsa Papadopouloui TSE Entre Research Centre Turku School of Economics, University of Turku, Finland Satu Aaltonen Elisa Akola Institute for Information System Research University of Koblenz-Landau, Germany Verena Hausmann Susan P. Williams Petra Schubert Valahia University of Targoviste, Romania Adriana Grigorescu Leonardo Badea Three Small & Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) Spin, Italy Carmine Antonio Donato Dorella De Tommaso Technology Development & Innovation – TDI LTD Bulgaria Milanka Slavova Ivan Stoychev TIS Praha, Czech Republic Anna Klosova Richard Adekeye nessculture.org     Content  Denmark