Dutch business culture guide - Learn about the Netherlands
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in...5
×
 

Dutch business culture guide - Learn about the Netherlands

on

  • 1,193 views

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

http://businessculture.org - Find out about business culture in the Netherlands. 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.

Statistics

Views

Total Views
1,193
Views on SlideShare
1,193
Embed Views
0

Actions

Likes
0
Downloads
22
Comments
0

0 Embeds 0

No embeds

Accessibility

Categories

Upload Details

Uploaded via as Adobe PDF

Usage Rights

© All Rights Reserved

Report content

Flagged as inappropriate Flag as inappropriate
Flag as inappropriate

Select your reason for flagging this presentation as inappropriate.

Cancel
  • Full Name Full Name Comment goes here.
    Are you sure you want to
    Your message goes here
    Processing…
Post Comment
Edit your comment

Dutch business culture guide - Learn about the Netherlands Dutch business culture guide - Learn about the Netherlands Document Transcript

  •            |  1     businessculture.org Business Culture in the Netherlands   http://businessculture.org/westerneurope/business-culture-in-netherlands/ Last updated: 30.09.2013 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 Germany   held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
  •            |  2     TABLE  OF  CONTENTS   Business  Culture  in  the  Netherlands  .........................................................................................  4   Xenophobia: being a foreigner in the Netherlands ...............................................................................5   International Business ...........................................................................................................................6   General Education ................................................................................................................................6   Educational standards ...........................................................................................................................7   Other Issues such as transportation infrastructure ................................................................................7   Cultural taboos ......................................................................................................................................7   Business  Communication  ..........................................................................................................  9   Face-to-face communication .................................................................................................................9   Language Matters .................................................................................................................................9   Business Relationships .........................................................................................................................10   Making contact....................................................................................................................................10   Personal titles.......................................................................................................................................11   Business  Etiquette  ..................................................................................................................  12   Corporate Social Responsibility ..........................................................................................................12   Punctuality ..........................................................................................................................................12   Gift giving ............................................................................................................................................12   Business Dress Code ............................................................................................................................13   Bribery and corruption........................................................................................................................13   Business  Meeting  Etiquette  ....................................................................................................  14   Importance of Business Meeting .........................................................................................................14   Business Meeting planning ..................................................................................................................14   Negotiation process .............................................................................................................................15   Meeting protocol .................................................................................................................................16   How to Run a Business Meeting .........................................................................................................16   Follow up letter after meeting with client............................................................................................16   Business meals .....................................................................................................................................17   businessculture.org   Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  3     Business Meeting tips ..........................................................................................................................18   Internship  and  placement  .......................................................................................................  19   Work experience .................................................................................................................................19   Internship and Placement advice ........................................................................................................19   Social security and European health insurance ..................................................................................19   Safety ...................................................................................................................................................19   Do I need a visa? .................................................................................................................................19   Internship and placement salary .........................................................................................................20   Internship and placement accommodation ........................................................................................20   Cost  of  Living  ...........................................................................................................................  21   Money and Banking ............................................................................................................................21   Traveling costs.....................................................................................................................................21   Work-­‐life  Balance   ....................................................................................................................  21   National holidays.................................................................................................................................22   Working hours .....................................................................................................................................23   Working culture ..................................................................................................................................23   Health insurance .................................................................................................................................24   Social  Media  Guide  .................................................................................................................  25   Private Individuals...............................................................................................................................25   SMEs ...................................................................................................................................................25   Search and Social Media Marketing for International Business .........................................................25     businessculture.org   Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  4     Business  Culture  in  the  Netherlands   Below is a short introduction to the Netherlands. External links at the end of this page provide you with in-depth information about different topics. The following video gives you an overview of the general facts: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=25yCWCHzR2o) With a surface area of more than 41,000 km2, and a population of around 17 million people, the Netherlands is one of the world’s most populous countries. A quarter of the Netherlands’ land area lies below sea level. The low-lying areas consist mainly of polders, flat stretches of land surrounded by dikes where the water table is controlled artificially. The Netherlands, which shares it borders with Germany and Belgium, is often referred to as “Holland”, the identity of the two western coastal provinces, North and South Holland, which are at the core of the country and have played a dominant role in the history of the Netherlands. Thanks to their location on to the Rhine-Maas estuary, these provinces are very important for the economy. They also contain the country’s principal administrative and commercial cities – Amsterdam, The Hague (Den Haag) and Rotterdam. Together with Utrecht, the capital of the province of Utrecht, they form the combined area of what is known as the Randstad conurbation, with a population of around 7 million. Today, the Netherlands comprises 12 provinces: North and South Holland, Utrecht, Gelderland, Overijssel and Flevoland (reclaimed from the Ijsselmeer) in the centre, Friesland, Drenthe and Groningen in the north, and Zeeland, North Brabant and Limburg in the south. Dutch is the mother tongue of more than 22 million people in the Netherlands and Belgium, whilst in the Dutch province of Friesland some people speak another language, Frisian. The Netherlands is in the time zone of UTC+1. However, during summertime (March to October) the clock is changed to summer time UTC+2. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  5   The Netherlands has a temperate marine climate with cool summers and mild winters. The most distinctive feature of the country geographically – but also logistically and economically – is the Rhine-Maas delta with its seaport of Rotterdam, the largest in the western world. It is here that one finds a break in the weather pattern, with a milder continental climate to the south and a more vigorous weather pattern dominated by North Sea winds to the north. Dutch society used to be strictly organised along religious or ideological lines with every grouping having its own schools, newspapers, trade unions, clubs, etc. Traces of this can still be seen today in the media, interest groups and the education system. Although churchgoing is on the wane, there are two large religious groups in the Netherlands: Roman Catholic and Protestant together with minorities of for example Muslims, Jews and Hindus throughout the country. However, nearly half of the population has no affiliation to any religious body. As an open economy, the Netherlands is susceptible to international developments and is based on consensus. The Netherlands has a long tradition of negotiation, which lives on in close and regular contacts between trade unions, employers’ organisations and government. It is a member of all the major international organisations. Xenophobia:  being  a  foreigner  in  the  Netherlands   The Netherlands has a well-deserved reputation as a model democracy embodying the principles of pluralism, social responsibility, tolerance and industriousness. It is a highly organised society, so much so that a uniquely Dutch attitude has evolved to accommodate the strains – what is called gedogen, an untranslatable word that implies the ability to tolerate exceptions to the rule. The influence of living in a relatively unfriendly environment over the centuries cannot be underestimated. This has generated a sense of the individual’s worth combined with a strong team spirit and a great fondness for gezelligheid, a peculiarly Dutch form of cosy sociability. Most importantly, it has also produced a consensus-oriented society where everyone has his or her say. All Dutch people know the value of their opinions and do not hesitate to give them. Even more important than gezelligheid and gedogen is the Dutch sense of Freedom. It was in the Netherlands that people first rejected the power of the Roman Catholic Church (as a society). In history, this was the place where books that were not allowed in other countries, were printed. This was a basis for their general attitude: Tolerance. Everyone has a right to his or her opinion. There are fundamental differences between the Dutch and the Belgians. Some say that this difference is due to the fact that the Dutch are born into a seafaring tradition. This is only partly true: there are two formative traditions in Dutch history, the farmers and the pirates. The second of these two cultures is well illustrated in the TV series, ‘Flodder’ – the Dutch counterpart of the Belgian ‘Samson’ series, both of which demonstrate the disarming ability of people to laugh at themselves. The egalitarian urge of the Dutch has also encouraged a tendency to avoid displays of conspicuous wealth: houses and even streets often seem surprisingly small and discreet to foreigners. This also used to apply to cars, but the iconic DAF is now being replaced by big businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  6     BMWs and the Mercedes-Benz. The traditional conformism of the Dutch – expressed in the popular phrase ‘Doe normaal, dan doe je al gek genoeg’ (‘act normally, that’s crazy enough as it is’) – is, like the dikes, being slowly eroded by the seas of time. Yet, in such a small and highly populated country, there is still a need for social order and some resistance to deviant behaviour, even if an international study into eccentricity rated the Dutch second only to the English in Europe. International  Business   When doing business in a foreign country you need to be prepared to experience things that are different from those in your own culture. Without proper preparation and planning, you may experience culture shock which can have a negative influence on the outcome of the business. It is understandable that, as an active business person, you can only invest a limited amount of time into the exploration of these cultural differences however, the benefits are extremely worthwhile. General  Education   The Netherlands has one of the best educational records in Europe, with nearly 100% literacy and more than 20% of the population moving on to higher education. Compulsory education (leerplicht) in the Netherlands starts at the age of five. However, in practice many schools accept children one year earlier. From the age of sixteen there is a partial compulsory education (partiële leerplicht), meaning that a pupil must attend some form of education for at least two days a week. Compulsory education ends at 18. Between the ages of five and twelve, children attend basisschool (elementary school, literally, “basic school”). This school has eight grades, groep 1 to groep 8. School attendance is compulsory from group 2 onwards (at age five), but almost all children commence school at four. From group 3 onwards, children learn how to read, write and do maths. Children aged 11 or 12 then move into one of four continuing education (voortgezet onderwijs) systems : VMBO, HAVO, VWO or Gymnasium: 1. The VMBO Voorbereidend Middelbaar Beroepsonderwijs (preparatory middle-level vocational education) lasts four years, from the age of twelve to sixteen. It combines vocational training with theoretical education in languages, mathematics, history, arts and sciences. Sixty percent of students nationally are enrolled in the VMBO system. The Theoretische Leerweg (literally: theoretical learning path) prepares students for middle management and vocational training at the MBO-level of tertiary education and is compulsory when entering the HAVO system as a next step via the VMBO. 2. The HAVO Hoger Algemeen Voortgezet Onderwijs (higher general continued education) system has five grades, with students attending from 12-17. A HAVO diploma provides access to the HBO level (polytechnic) of tertiary education. 3. The VWO Voorbereidend Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs (preparatory scientific education) system has six grades and is attended from 12-18. A VWO diploma provides access to university education, although institutions may set their own admittance criteria. 4. The Gymnasium programme is similar to the VWO, but the diploma tends to be more highly regarded. It includes ancient Greek and Latin as extra languages. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  7     VAVO Voortgezet Algemeen Volwassenen Onderwijs (prolonged general adult education) is VMBO, HAVO or VWO taught to adults, while MBO Middelbaar Beroeps Onderwijs (middle-level vocational education) is oriented more towards vocational training. With an MBO, HAVO or VWO, diploma students can then enrol in HBO Hoger Beroeps Onderwijs (higher professional education) oriented towards professional training, which takes four to six years. On obtaining enough credits, pupils will receive a Bachelor’s degree, but can choose to study longer and then obtain a Master’s degree after a further two years. With a VWO-diploma or a propedeuse preliminary examination from HBO, pupils can enrol in WO Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs (scientific education) at a university. Having obtained enough credits, students receive a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree. They can choose to study longer, either one or two years, and then obtain a Master’s degree in various fields including Master of Arts, Sciences, Philosophy, etc. Educational  standards   When doing business in a foreign country, it helps to have some knowledge of the language and computer competency of your counterparts. You can then decide whether it is safe to rely on the host speaking your language or whether it is necessary to travel with an interpreter. Computers and electronic communications can significantly increase the pace of business negotiations. At least some awareness of your business partner’s computer literacy may help you to adjust both your expectations and the degree to which you incorporate technology into your negotiations not to mention saving time and money. Other  Issues  such  as  transportation  infrastructure   As a pluralist and egalitarian society, the Netherlands is an accommodating country and treats its immigrant well. While the Dutch are individually very tolerant people, there are growing signs of popular frustration at the attitudes and behaviour of some immigrant groups and as a consequence, some emerging evidence of racism. This is essentially directed at non-European peoples. Cultural  taboos   If your Dutch colleague responds critically to something you have said or done, do not take this as a rejection. He or she is simply giving an opinion. Although the Netherlands is essentially a tolerant and pluralistic society, there are some issues that are best avoided, particularly at the beginning of a relationship. Behaviours to avoid: • • • • • addressing people by their first name initially walking into someone’s office without knocking talking with your hands in your pockets yawning or using a toothpick without covering your mouth chewing gum or spitting in public businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  8     • • breaking promises littering Discussion topics to avoid • • • what people earn personal or intimate questions dress, appearance or weight The following topics are safe and suitable for discussions with your Dutch counterparts: • • • • • • • • • • The weather – e.g. “Nice day!” Food and drink – e.g. “Would you like a cup of coffee?” or “Are you hungry?” Travel – e.g. “How was the journey?” or “Did you have a pleasant flight?” Family – e.g. “Please give my best regards to your wife” Entertainment – e.g. “Did you see the film last night on TV?” Holidays – e.g. “When do you plan to go on holiday?” Music – e.g. “Do you like pop music?” News – e.g. “Did you hear about the demonstrations in France?” Sport, particularly football, cycling or tennis – “I see the winner was Dutch!” General topics – e.g. “How was your day yesterday?” or “See you on Monday.” businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  9      Business  Communication   The following section focuses on the communication aspect of business practice. Issues such as verbal and non-verbal communication are discussed with an emphasis on general business etiquette. The chapter also includes information about Dutch working practices in general and habits that may be relevant for business negotiations. Miscommunication during a business encounter may have serious consequences for the success of a deal. Whereas, we may not have any problems communicating with business partners at home, this situation may change when doing business abroad. In a foreign country you usually come across people from different cultural backgrounds and thus their style of communication often differs as well. Without an awareness of this you may experience culture shock when dealing with your cross cultural business partners, causing yourself embarrassment and perhaps making your counterpart feel uncomfortable too. Face-­‐to-­‐face  communication   Introductions may be difficult as they depend upon the circumstances of a particular situation. Generally, the best practice is to be introduced by a third party. However, in certain situations this may not be possible. When introducing yourself it is essential to shake hands in a firm manner. Dutch behaviour in public tends to be low-key, so try to moderate both your voice and your body language (not doing so is a criticism often levelled against Americans). The Dutch may look to you to ‘break the ice’. A good starting point can be a comment on the beauty of your host’s home-town (the Netherlands has some of the finest urban architecture in the world). Fall back topics, depending on the interests of the other party, are football, ice skating, music, the Old Masters and famous Dutch people, of whom there are plenty. The Dutch have a well-developed sense of humour, relatively harmless and of the earthy variety rather than witty. Like the English, they have a fondness for puns. Language  Matters   The educated Dutch are masters of foreign languages, particularly English. Being a small country with limited resources, the Netherlands has relied on international trade for its livelihood and, as a consequence, the ability to speak other languages has been essential. French has also been a popular language with the Dutch elite in the past. Basic secondary education in the Netherlands includes language teaching in English, German and sometimes French, Spanish or Chinese. It will rarely be necessary to use interpreters when negotiating with Dutch business people. In fact, doing so may even be regarded as showing a lack of trust. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  10   Business  Relationships   To quote the words of William Z Shetter of the University of California-Berkeley in his book The Netherlands in Perspective, “The Dutch occupy one of the world’s most densely populated countries, and they structure life in it by means of a seemingly irrevocable commitment to a meticulously detailed but at the same time flexible system of interlocking organization” (Shetter, W. Z.; The Netherlands in Perspective: The Organizations of Society and Environment; Springer 1988; p. 14). Inspired by what the Dutch call “the Polder Model” – the slow decision-making process that characterizes Dutch politics, where all parties have to be heard – everyone is entitled to their say. Moreover, once it has been said, there’s a good chance that management will be challenged if it has not taken what has been said into account. This has been a startling revelation for the managers of so-called Benelux subsidiaries (a favourite of Anglo-Saxon corporations) where, on issues that would pass uncommented upon by the Belgian rank-andfile a failure to take into account the opinions of Dutch employees has almost caused a riot. Being a people of intermittent extremes – despite their professed addiction to the middle of the road – the Dutch do tend to let their dedication to detail and money get out of hand. Seen from the viewpoint of their closest neighbours, the expansive and Burgundian Belgians, the Dutch businessman or woman is determined, ambitious, “a real fox”. In supplier/customer situations it is often a question of “all or nothing” – the relationship is either a roaring success or it goes right off the rails. Making  contact   In his book The Netherlands in Perspective, William Z Shetter quotes the classic Dutch etiquette guide Hoe hoort het eigenlijk? (Now what’s the right way to do it?): “Making violent gestures is still considered vulgar and talking with the hands remains impolite. Wellbred people gesture as little as possible, and if they do, it is done gracefully and harmoniously… Greeting someone with a big hug is also something that isn’t done. In public we should use nothing more than words to communicate with, words which normally are not amplified by gestures. We don’t use gestures of revulsion, horror, satisfaction, or surprise. That is the way things should be done, and that is in keeping with our national temperament, because we don’t wear our hearts on our sleeves” (Shetter, w.Z.; The Netherlands in Perspective: The Organizations of Society and Environment; Springer 1988). A handshake is the usual form of greeting in the Netherlands, accompanied by an appropriate phrase like “good day” (note: even posing a rhetorical question like “how are you?” may cause confusion). In business meetings, with a number of people present, it is perfectly normal to circle the room shaking everyone’s hand and introducing oneself each time with at least one’s family name. Take business cards with you as they might be exchanged at the beginning of the meeting. Normally, welcomes and responses will be warm without being overly intimate. In a social as opposed to a business setting, women and members of the opposite sex who already know one another may kiss – generally three times starting with the right cheek (the left cheek from the point of view of the person kissing). businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  11   The ‘intimate zone’ of most Dutch people tends to be 50 cm +. Foreigners may be surprised that chairs are set relatively far apart. When meeting for the first time, ensure that you maintain steady eye contact when listening. Avoid intense eye contact as this may be felt to be invasive. In his book The Low Sky, Han van der Horst says: “In the Netherlands there is a distance between people. Literally, the Dutch will sit next to someone else only if there is no alternative. Even in the bus or train” (van der Horst, H.; The Low Sky: Understanding the Dutch; Midpoint Trade Books 2012). Personal  titles   To the unsuspecting foreign business person coming to the Netherlands for the first time, all educated Dutch people seem to be a doctorandus (drs.) or an ingenieur (ir.) [this is not to be confused with the more lowly high-school ingenieur (ing.)]. Both qualifications are the equivalent of a Master’s degree. However, these titles are most often only used in official documents. Otherwise, titles and qualifications are used sparingly, without necessarily resorting to the level of informality characteristic of the British or the Americans. With the exception of university professors, it is not usual to address individuals by their professional titles, in contrast to the practice in Germanic or some Nordic cultures. Generally, you start using someone’s first name during the first encounter and ever after. If you have already received a letter or an email from your counterpart signed with his first name, you can start using a first name during the first visit. Exceptions might occur within formal settings and where the younger and older generations come together. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  12    Business  Etiquette     Attitudes and values form the basis of any culture. They reflect both the way people think and behave. Understanding attitudes and values can therefore be of significant importance if you wish to communicate with your counterparts effectively. Ignorance of these issues can result in a cultural barrier that may inhibit the communication process and have an adverse effect on the success of your activities in a given country. Corporate  Social  Responsibility   As a matter of history, the Netherlands is one of the most environmentally conscious countries in the world. Owing its existence to a continuous battle against encroaching waters, harnessing wind power in support of its efforts, the country has an intimate and forgiving relationship with nature. A strong farming tradition, with market gardening and horticulture as a prosperous offshoot, has reinforced the process. The only major challenge is that, with the current strong emphasis on livestock breeding, the Netherlands has a problem coping with vast quantities of liquid manure. For this reason alone, with the country having three large rivers – the Rhine, the Maas and the Scheldt estuary – water quality is a major issue. Punctuality   The Dutch are generally excellent timekeepers. Punctuality in business is regarded as a virtue, although apologies for a late arrival will be accepted good-naturedly. If you are unexpectedly delayed, call ahead. If you are invited for dinner, it will not be unreasonable to ask your host what time he or she would like you to arrive. Take that as your target and try to be prompt. Despite the fact that, inspired by their culture, the Dutch are dedicated to business meetings to ensure consensus, they are still conscious of the passage of time. In addition to a fixed agenda, someone will almost always be given the role of chairperson to keep the agenda moving along, and someone else may even be delegated to act as a time-keeper. Time keeping is equally important with regard to response and delivery times in all commercial relationships. Quotations should be drawn up rapidly and delivery promises kept. Gift  giving   The Dutch do not like to feel obligated. Moreover, as an aspect of their even-handed approach to most things in life, they do not expect to give or receive anything other than the due reward for services rendered. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  13     As a result, gift giving is not a common aspect of business relationships in the Netherlands. If you decide, however, that some sort of gesture is appropriate, for example on finalising an agreement, make the gift a reasonably modest one and make sure it is neutral – nothing with the company logo, or with your business card attached. If you are offered a gift, open it immediately and show your appreciation. Some Dutch companies may offer end-of-year gifts and these should of course be acknowledged. If you have the honour of being invited into a Dutch home, by all means take a gift for the hostess – flowers or a houseplant, wine (especially if the host is a male) or chocolates and sweets or a toy for the children. The rules on flowers are the same as for most other European countries: no chrysanthemums or carnations. A handwritten note of appreciation the following day will also always be welcome. Business  Dress  Code   The Dutch tend to dress fairly conservatively in business, though standards and styles vary widely from one industry to another: formal attire is normal in banking, open-neck shirts and jeans in the IT and entertainment sectors. In most Dutch organisations, it is generally normal to wear a jacket, not necessarily a suit, to take the jacket off when working. Colour has no particular significance, and colourful shirt/tie combinations are quite usual in some sectors, such as marketing and service industries. Women, the younger generation in particular, may wear trousers, particularly trouser suits. When in doubt about the dress code for a particular business event, it is advisable to be well dressed rather than under-dressed. Uniforms, except at the janitor level, are rarely worn. Sometimes, choice of clothing will be determined by the means of transport to work. In major cities such as Amsterdam, many people travel by bicycle or tram. If unsure of the dress code and what to wear, it is perfectly acceptable to ask someone from the company you are visiting. It is often better to find out in advance, so that you can make any necessary changes to your clothing before your introductions. This will help you to feel confident and relaxed in your encounter with the company. Bribery  and  corruption   While they have rightly earned a reputation as formidable opponents in international trade, the Dutch have a reputation for honesty. In Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index for 2012 (www.transparency.org), the country came 9th in the world (out of 176) with a score of 84%. A law revising corruption legislation came into force in February 2001. This includes a new article to extend the definition of bribery offences, which previously applied only to domestic public servants. The new article has now widened the law to include persons in the public service of a foreign state or an international law organisation, former public servants, persons anticipated to become a public servant and judges of a foreign state or an international organisation. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  14   Business  Meeting  Etiquette     Meetings are a normal feature of the Dutch business scene, either face-to-face or, with the predominance of international activities and the emergence of virtual teams, over the telecom/Internet network. These vary in their nature and content, but are a very common part of organisational life. In his book Dealing with the Dutch, Jacob Vossestein quotes the complaint of a foreign business visitor: “I wouldn’t mind missing the Dutch meeting culture. If you phone someone, inevitably the answer is: he’s in a meeting, can you phone again? That disturbed me right from the beginning of my stay. They only meet here for the sake of meeting. The positive side is that everyone is seeking consensus with one another, although often the opinions are fixed beforehand. It becomes a charade, a ritual, sponsored by coffee producers” (Vossestein, J.; Dealing with the Dutch; Royal Tropical Institute Press 1998). The irony of this complaint is that it comes from a German. Increasingly, meetings are team-oriented, with or without the participation of senior management. Project team meetings may be planned at short notice and often go on longer than the participants really want. It may be necessary to plan ahead when arranging meetings with senior executives, as agendas tend to be booked up some time in advance. Importance  of  Business  Meeting   It is good practice in the Netherlands to make an appointment, one or two weeks in advance: once the timing has been agreed there is no need to check or reconfirm. If you have a conflict of priorities later, explain the situation to your Dutch partner and he or she will certainly understand and find an alternative arrangement. The most suitable time for a business meeting is probably about 10 in the morning or in the early afternoon. If you have a specific product or proposition to offer, by all means supply some background details (price excepted) in advance. Information about the other company may well be available on the Internet. Business  Meeting  planning   Being pragmatic and relatively non-hierarchical people, Dutch managers can generally be approached directly for an appointment: this certainly applies in the SME sector, where the younger generation of managers has abandoned the hierarchical style of its predecessors. Only occasionally will you find yourself dealing with a secretary or personal assistant. If confirmation is necessary, this can be done by e-mail. Punctuality and a respectful use of time are generally appreciated in the Netherlands and meetings will not normally be allowed to run on too long over the allotted time. For social meetings in private or in business, one can arrive 5 minutes late, but “official” social meetings, especially in a business context will start on time. Most official (or social) meetings (where one can expect a speech), will even indicate a 15 or 30 minutes timeslot to arrive before an event starts. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  15     Getting to meeting venues should not normally be a problem. The transport infrastructure in the main cities is generally good and taxi services are regulated. If formal presentations are planned, the venue of meetings, who needs to attend, and any required equipment, (e.g. PowerPoint beamer or overhead projector), need to be arranged in advance. Plan to keep to the scheduled finish time, and try to leave with a firm conclusion. You may wish to submit draft minutes or a memorandum of understanding later. Internet and video conferencing and conference calls are a regular event these days. Negotiation  process   As the visitor, avoid any hint of superiority or of being overbearing. This is a very egalitarian society where everyone can have his or her say. The worker representatives on the company council (ondernemingsraad) can be influential, so there should be no secrets or backroom dealings within the organisation. Describing the Dutch approach to negotiation in his book The Low Sky, Han van der Horst says: “Outright rejections are very rare. Comments are usually presented as suggestions for improvement, marginal rather than challenging anything essential. The person submitting the proposals is open to such suggestions and lays his loose change on the table, one coin at a time. This requires skill and experience. The quicker he shows his loose change, the more the others will demand from him. It is a slow and, for outsiders, sometimes irritating process – particularly as it is so difficult to intervene while the process runs its course. Any expression of one’s own talent or excellence tends to be counterproductive as does any defence of the proposals based on their inherent superiority” (van der Horst, H.; The Low Sky: Understanding the Dutch; Midpoint Trade Books 2012). In negotiations, the Dutch ultimately say what they think and expect you to do the same. Furthermore, they will be suspicious of inflated claims, and want concrete facts, hard data and statistics. There is little room for emotion or subjectivity, and the influence of what is called interpersonal attraction on negotiations is limited. If you mean ‘no’, say so: the Dutch accept directness and dislike evasiveness, although politeness may prevent them from saying ‘no’ to a proposal from the other side. Diversity of opinion, across and on both sides of the negotiating table, is readily accepted. As in any other culture, some Dutch business people – particularly the descendants of traders who have inherited the pirate tradition, rather than the farmers – are known to play tricks, a habit that may have something to do with the satisfaction of outwitting a competitor. It might happen that the Dutch pretend they understand you even though it might not be the case. Once you know this, you have the advantage in two respects. In the first place, the Dutch often seem to be permanently programmed in teaching mode (though, being a democratic people, they moralise as much to themselves as they do to others). This may provide you with the opportunity to act the good listener and play on their vanity. They also tend to focus so single-mindedly on an agreed objective that, even if they suspect there may be an alternative strategy that would serve their case better, they will stick to the original one. So, again, you always know where you are. The Dutch will insist, in project work, on respecting the original businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  16     specification down to the last detail. Once the deal is clinched, the Dutch are unlikely to go back on it. Once a decision is made, that’s it. Meeting  protocol   Apart from an older generation who have adopted French ways, Dutch business people tend to be informal in their behaviour, although observers have noticed a slight increase in formality in recent years. Start by shaking hands with everybody, giving your name and saying something like “good day” or “a pleasure to meet you”. Do not feel obliged to present your business card at this stage. You should refrain from too vigorous a handshake or physical contact such as backslapping. Smiling suggests positive intentions but, again, should not be overdone. In a meeting with many attendees where not everyone knows each other, the chairperson will go around the room, to allow each person to introduce themselves, with their name and job title, or if external to the organisation, the company they represent. It is also customary to shake hands with everybody on leaving a meeting. How  to  Run  a  Business  Meeting   When running a meeting, the most important factor to be aware of is the planning and preparation necessary to ensure the meeting achieves its objectives. Ensure all the required attendees are aware of the meeting, and any necessary work they may need to do in advance. It is important that you know who will be attending and what their specific functions are. Ensure the location is thought through, that the room has all the required facilities, and has enough space for the numbers likely to attend. If you are responsible for the meeting, it is advisable to arrive early before the start of the meeting to check the room layout and ensure that enough chairs are available. Also, do make sure there is a reasonable supply of good coffee as well as soft drinks. Most probably you will be able to rely on English as the lingua franca for the occasion. If simultaneous translation is felt to be essential, then make sure the choice of interpreter(s) is acceptable to both sides. In the Netherlands it is usual to allow other people to speak, and not to interrupt them when they are speaking. It is also useful to obtain feedback after the meeting and to establish what the attendees thought of the content and what was discussed. Follow  up  letter  after  meeting  with  client   businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  17   It is advisable to send a written record of the decisions made at the meeting – minutes or a ‘memorandum of understanding’ to all attendees. Deadlines should be clearly stated and, if delivery of a product or service is involved, details of specifications and price confirmed. It is essential to give a firm and realistic delivery date. Ask for written confirmation of acceptance, but do not necessarily expect it unless a formal contract is involved. Your Dutch counterparts will be impressed by prompt follow-up of actions agreed at the meeting. As a general rule with the Dutch, it is important to confirm receipt of contracts or important business correspondence, preferably by mail, alternatively by email. Business  meals   The business meal provides a suitable occasion to develop the social relationships that represent the gateway to success in any business encounter in a foreign country. Although your Dutch counterpart may not be seeking to create deep social bonds, these occasions provide the opportunity to develop trust and find out more about the other side. Attitudes to business meals The Dutch are less inclined than their Belgian neighbours to combine business with pleasure. This particularly applies to the working lunch, which will be relatively fast and efficient so that you can get back to business and may take the form of a sandwich and a glass of milk in the office, a meal in the company canteen, or a visit to the local café or restaurant for the dagschotel (daily special). The Dutch are more likely to invite business partners to a restaurant to mark a significant event, such as the closing of a deal. The probability of being invited to a private home is low. After-hours drinks are not appropriate for detailed discussions, as your Dutch counterpart will probably be anxious to get home, but such gatherings may represent a good opportunity for informal discussions and the development of social bonds. Restaurant Etiquette When eating out at a restaurant, show that you are as democratic as the average Dutch person by treating the waiter with respect and getting his attention with simple eye contact and a nod. If the service is particularly good, you may wish to leave a tip of 5-10%, even though a service charge is included in the bill. Also be prepared to give a tip of 50 cent to the washroom attendant. Common sense and general dining rules should be followed in order to cause neither embarrassment nor annoyance. The golden rules are: make an effort to eat and drink at the same pace as the rest of the group, don’t speak with your mouth full, don’t stretch across the table, and don’t wave your cutlery about. Again, it is good practice to follow the host’s lead. The general rules of restaurant etiquette are as follows: businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  18     • • • • • • Turn off your mobile phone Only the host picks up the wine list Order the same number of courses as your Dutch colleagues. This should not alarm you, as the tendency at business lunches is increasingly to have just a main course and coffee Keep your hands on the table If you can, avoid leaving anything on your plate When you have finished your starter/main course, place your knife and fork at twenty to four with the points of the fork facing upwards The Netherlands unlike its neighbour, Belgium, is not a country known for gastronomic excess – though it also has its rituals, notably the Indonesian rijstafel. In addition to the three traditional meals a day – a breakfast of bread, cheese and cold meats, lunch and dinner – many people will have a snack at 10 a.m. (remember the Dutch have started early!) and another at 4 p.m. Dairy products are a staple feature of the Dutch diet. If you are invited to dine at your Dutch partner’s home (a great honour), be sure to arrive pretty punctually. Dinner, which will most probably be served at 18.30-19.00 hours, is generally considered to be the most important meal of the day. Business  Meeting  tips   It may be appropriate to start a business meeting with a few pleasantries, though this should not take too long. Ensure that you bring enough business cards and information material about your company. The ideal time to hand out this background material is at the beginning of the meeting. Negotiations and decisions are usually open and flexible. Your Dutch counterparts will favour a win/win approach. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  19      Internship  and  placement     Work  experience   In the Netherlands on-the-job training or a placement is called a “Stage”. It is offered within many fields including agriculture, tourism, health care, engineering, etc. Whether the placement is full or part-time and its duration depends on the company and the intern. For an internship in the Netherlands, Dutch law requires applicants to be either a European Citizen OR to be currently enrolled in an educational institution as a student. It should be noted that after graduation, you will in general no longer be able to take an internship in the Netherlands. 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 leave enough time for all the arrangements and the necessary formalities. The training organisations, educational institutions and home and host organisations will be able to help with the formalities. Social  security  and  European  health  insurance   All citizens must insure themselves against the costs of medical care. However, there are no health risks associated with travel to the Netherlands and no inoculations are required. It is even safe to drink tap water. Safety   In general, the rate of violent crime is relatively low in the Netherlands. However, tourists are often targeted by thieves. Robbery, pickpocketing and bag snatching are quite common especially around Amsterdam’s main tourist attractions, in restaurants, at the Central Station and on public transportation. Thieves often operate in pairs, especially at Schiphol airport and Central Station as well as on the trams. While one thief will attempt to distract you (often by asking for directions or banging on your window) another picks your pocket or steals your bag. Do  I  need  a  visa?   As mentioned above, for an internship in the Netherlands, Dutch law requires applicants to be either a European Citizen OR to be currently enrolled in an educational institution as a student. If you are going to work in the Netherlands, you will need a Citizen Service Number businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  20   (Burgerservicenummer or BSN). This is a unique identity number that you can apply for at your local municipality. Internship  and  placement  salary   Placements might be paid by the companies but not necessarily. This depends on the company and on the field in which you are planning to do your internship. Placements on professional courses such as medicine or law are mostly paid. However, there is no obligation to pay interns. Around 300€ per month might be a normal payment. Internship  and  placement  accommodation   Normally, interns must organise their accommodation themselves. Finding a good place to live can be quite difficult. It is much cheaper to live in the suburbs than in the centre of cities such as Amsterdam and The Hague. You will pay around 500€ a month for a one-bedroom apartment in the centre of Amsterdam compared to only 300€ in a village in the suburbs. Availability however, is often a greater problem than high prices. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  21   Cost  of  Living     Money  and  Banking   The banking business is dominated by some large companies offering virtually a full range of financial services to both corporate clients and private persons. These are ABN AMRO Bank; Rabobank, a co-operative bank institution and ING Bank. In addition to these large banks, there is a series of smaller, mainly specialised banks in the Netherlands, most of them subsidiaries of other companies or foreign banks. Many foreign banks also have a branch in the Netherlands. Even though the Netherlands is in the euro zone in monetary terms, all banks are supervised by De Nederlandsche Bank, the former Dutch central bank. Traveling  costs   Usually, the student will need to pay and organise their travel to the destination country and to the company themselves. Public transport in the Netherlands is relatively cheap compared with some EU countries. Paying for single trips on public transport can be very expensive. A prepaid Public Transport Card (“OV chip card” which can be used for multiple trips and on all means of transport – train, bus, tram, metro) is much cheaper.  Work-­‐life  Balance     The Dutch generally work to rule, that is to say that they have clearly defined working hours and they respect them. The Netherlands was named the third best country for work-life balance in a 2011 report from the OECD. The Dutch make friendships slowly and selectively but, once made, these are generally for life. As the author of The Netherlands in Perspective, William Z. Shetter, says: “Statistical surveys in all Western countries suggest the same disruption and dissolution of traditional family ties and the rejection of old family values, and the Netherlands has not been exempted from this. Nevertheless, it remains in essence what is sometimes called an ‘introverted family culture’. There are in fact, two words in Dutch for “family”. The wider sense of a network of relationships is Familie, but the unit of mother-father-children most commonly occupying a single-family dwelling is gezin. Housing patterns in the Netherlands, including the customary layout of individual houses, accurately reflect the perception of gezin as a family unit as fundamental. Dwellings, whether assembled into large apartment blocks or in rows, are intended only for the gezin and their typically modest size does not permit much expansion of this. Interiors are normally designed following a custom emphasizing the family circle grouped together. Living rooms usually have chairs arranged in a tight circle to make conversation maximally easy and intimate. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  22     The whole Dutch conversational style, in fact, derives from the family emphasis: Dutch families and their visitors are able to carry on for hours a conversation among six to ten people in a circle without once breaking up into individual pair-conversations (the dominant pattern in the U.S., for instance). This particular domestic model of social contentment and fulfilment is captured in the word gezelligheid”. However, this is changing a bit as the upper class more and more resemble a US lifestyle. “The values most important to a society are given expression in its primary rituals. In the Netherlands one of the central rituals is the birthday. Birthdays of family and friends are carefully kept track of. It is quite normal to congratulate a Dutch colleague for the birthday of one of their family, for instance their father, wife or child” (Shetter, w.Z.; The Netherlands in Perspective: The Organizations of Society and Environment; Springer 1988). The Gezin is an important part of life for Dutch people, thus in order to achieve a good worklife balance, this needs to be taken into account. Dutch companies are well aware of the business case for a work-life balance. There is a trend towards more flexible systems of working time in order to make more effective use of employee resources. The Netherlands already has a very high percentage of temporary and part-time employees. In 2009 almost 50% of all Dutch employees worked part-time. In recent years, the flexibility of working hours and extension of hours of business have been issues covered in a number of major collective agreements, e.g. in the metal industry, construction sector and certain large concerns. There is growing pressure from all sides for greater flexibility in working hours, in order to cope with the problem of rush-hour traffic, particularly in the Randstad area between Amsterdam, Utrecht, Den Haag and Rotterdam. National  holidays   If considering making a business trip to the Netherlands, generally avoid the months of July and August and the periods around Easter and the end-of-year holidays. Public holidays in the Netherlands: • • • • • • • • New Year 01.01 Easter Sunday and Monday around March/April Queen’s Day 30.04 Liberation Day 05.05 (not every year a day off) Ascension Day May/June Pentecost Sunday and Monday May/June Christmas 25.12 St. Stephen’s Day 26.12 The most important celebration for smaller children in the Netherlands is Sinterklaas, on the evening of December 5, and it is in essence the culmination of the traditional Dutch birthday ritual. However, for older children Christmas is more important. Another important festivity – practiced most enthusiastically in the Limburg province in the south-east, Drenthe, Noth Brabant and Overijsse in the north – is St Marten’s Day, on November 11. During February there is a week of celebrations, known as Carnaval, which is an important week mostly for the businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  23   area under the Rivers, Limburg and North Brabant and also in a part of South Holland and Gelderland. Working  hours   Business hours are generally from 08:30 to17:30 (bear in mind that the Dutch generally sit down for dinner at home no later than 18:30). Stores and supermarkets will normally be open between 09:00 and 17:30 or longer. Banking hours are generally 09:00-17:00, possibly staying open later on Thursday or Friday nights. On Sundays everything is closed. The 1919 Labour Act, which established 48 hours as the maximum length of the working week, was replaced by a new Working Hours Act (Arbeidstijdenwet) in January 1996. Nowadays, average working hours in the Netherlands are between 36 and 40 hours a week. For most employees, weekly working hours are fixed by collective agreement and may vary across individual industries and enterprises. Summer vacations average four weeks and are generally taken in July-August, while many Dutch people take a week to ten days at the end of the year. To avoid congestion, school holidays are staggered between the North, Centre and South. Working  culture   Working practices are changing with the introduction of flexitime, home working and the like. Under EU legislation, part-time and temporary workers are protected by law. Almost 50% of all Dutch employees work part-time on fixed term contracts. Temporary contracts are normally given to new starters for their first or second year with a new firm. These contracts are for 1 year initially and can be extended by another temporary contract for another year before a permanent contract is provided (an organisation is not allowed to offer a temporary contract for a 3rd time.) However these temporary contracts can be for full time as well as part-time work. Flexi workers are most often people working for an “uitzendbureau”an organisation that provides services to other organisations to fill their temporary need for extra work. These employees have a contract with the first organization which has given them work with the 2nd organization. As a result of its success in service industries, temporary employment is now moving into manufacturing, where it provides additional flexibility for seasonal work. With a large proportion of young people in the workforce, more and more are being hired as temporary employees. Another trend is towards job pools, where several organisations share the same employees. In order to protect the workforce, all organisations have to comply with legislation across a wide range of areas from health and safety to ensuring that employees earn a basic minimum amount of money per hour – the minimum wage. Any private-sector organisation employing an average of 50 employees has to provide for worker representation, while any company employing 100+ people over the year has to have a works council (ondernemingsraad). businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  24     Businesses adopt their own policies, procedures and have their own cultures and values. The best way to establish what these are is to talk to the employees and ask how the organisation works. All companies have something unique to themselves, even if the product they produce or sell is the same as that of others. Health  insurance   The Netherlands has a high level of healthcare. This is reflected in the average life expectancy, which is 76 years for men and 80.9 years for women. Healthcare is provided by a wide range of institutions and professionals. Several statutory insurance schemes exist to make care financially accessible for everyone. There are various types of insurance covering hospital care, GP consultations and paramedical care, which together account for 43% of all healthcare expenditure. The government determines the cover provided and the income-linked contribution. Private insurance companies set their own premiums, generally based on the risk of illness. A special private insurance scheme ensures affordable care for the elderly and the chronically ill. A new health insurance system was introduced in 2006, consisting of a single compulsory standard insurance scheme for curative care. There is no longer a distinction between public and private health insurance. Recent years have seen a shift towards care in the community for the elderly and the disabled. The focus is no longer on the illness, but the person with the illness who wants to lead as independent a life as possible. Care previously confined to institutions can now be provided at home, if the patient wishes. Dutch local councils are legally obliged to provide care services for the elderly and the disabled – transport, wheelchairs and special facilities in the home. Primary healthcare (GP, paramedical, obstetric, maternity and dental care) has been undergoing a transition since 2003. The changes will make care less centrally regulated and more individually focused. The emphasis of the reforms is on improved cooperation between GPs and other primary healthcare providers such as physiotherapists. In secondary healthcare (specialist and outpatient care), the introduction of a new funding system has the highest priority. Medical technology and organisational change make it increasingly possible to provide care to patients at home. The Dutch use relatively few medicines compared with other Europeans, and prices in the Netherlands are about the European average. The Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport coordinates Dutch policy on drugs. The main objective is to prevent drug use and to limit the risks associated with it. Dutch policy on drugs makes a distinction between cannabis and hard drugs (e.g. heroin, cocaine and synthetic drugs) based on the different health risks. The number of drug-related deaths in the Netherlands is the lowest in Europe, according to a study performed by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction in Lisbon. businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  25     Social  Media  Guide     Private  Individuals   According to the Internet World Stats nearly 90% of the Dutch people use the Internet and more than half of them use social media of some kind. The social networking market in the Netherlands is one of the few markets remaining where a local social networking player called Hyves continues to lead the market. Interestingly, the Netherlands ranks first worldwide in terms of internet penetration for the two social network sites Twitter and LinkedIn. The most used platforms according to their numbers of members are: • • • • • • Facebook Youtube Linkedin Twitter Google + Hyves SMEs   According to a survey from the job placement website NationalVacturebank.nl nearly half of all Dutch employees view social media sites like Facebook and twitter several times a day, while they are in their office. Maybe because of this, around 20% of respondents said, that social media websites like Facebook are blocked from their office computer and more than 1/3 stated, that their company has social media guidelines. 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) businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  26     • • 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. 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) businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  27     • • 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= 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) businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  28     • • 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? 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) businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands  
  •            |  29     • • 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? 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 businessculture.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  Netherlands  
  •   businessculture.org                |  30   Content  Netherlands  
  •              |  31   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 businessculture.org     Content  Netherlands