Slovenian business culture guide - Learn about Slovenia

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http://businessculture.org - Find out about business culture in Slovenia. 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 Slovenia. 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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  • 1.            |  1     businessculture.org Business Culture in Slovenia   http://businessculture.org/southerneurope/business-culture-in-slovenia/ Content Template Last updated: 02.10.2013 businessculture.org   This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This Content  Slovenia   publication reflects the view only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.
  • 2.            |  2     TABLE  OF  CONTENTS   Business  Culture  in  Slovenia  .....................................................................................................  4   Xenophobia:  being  a  foreigner  in  Slovenia ....................................................................................... 5   International  business  in  Slovenia .................................................................................................... 5   General  educations ............................................................................................................................. 5   Educational  standards ........................................................................................................................ 6   Other  issues  such  as  transport  infrastructure ................................................................................. 7   Cultural  taboos .................................................................................................................................... 7   Business  Communication  ..........................................................................................................  8   Face-­‐to-­‐face  communication.............................................................................................................. 8   Language  matters ............................................................................................................................... 8   English-­‐Slovenian  Vocabulary ........................................................................................................... 9   Business  relationship ......................................................................................................................... 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  meetings.................................................................................................... 13   Business  meeting  planning .............................................................................................................. 13   Negotiation  process .......................................................................................................................... 14   Meeting  protocol ............................................................................................................................... 15   businessculture.org   Content  Slovenia  
  • 3.            |  3     How  to  run  a  business  meeting ....................................................................................................... 15   Follow  up  letter  after  meeting  with  client ...................................................................................... 16   Business  meals .................................................................................................................................. 16   Business  meetings  tips ..................................................................................................................... 16   Internship  and  placement  .......................................................................................................  18   Work experience................................................................................................................................. 18   Internship  and  placement  advice .................................................................................................... 18   Social  security  and  European  health  insurance  card ..................................................................... 18   Safety ................................................................................................................................................. 19   Do  I  need  a  visa?................................................................................................................................ 19   Internship  and  placement  salary ..................................................................................................... 19   Internship  and  placement  accommodation .................................................................................... 20   Cost  of  Living  ...........................................................................................................................  21   Money  and  banking .......................................................................................................................... 21   Traveling  costs .................................................................................................................................. 21   Work-­‐life  Balance   ....................................................................................................................  22   National  holidays .............................................................................................................................. 22   Working  hours .................................................................................................................................. 23   Work  culture ..................................................................................................................................... 23   Health  insurance ............................................................................................................................... 23   Social  Media  Guide  .................................................................................................................  25   Private individuals .............................................................................................................................. 25   Search  and  Social  Media  Marketing  for  International  Business ................................................... 25   businessculture.org   Content  Slovenia  
  • 4.            |  4     Business  Culture  in  Slovenia   The following is a very short introduction to Germany. External links at the end of this page provide you with more in depth information concerning different topics. The following video gives you an overview of the general facts: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9UaA6Ny_Qs) The general information on a country and its social, economic, cultural and institutional environment will help the visitor understand the context in which their business partners operate. Since informal discussion during meetings or social events may bring up local or national issues, it is good to be aware of certain aspects of local culture, as this may help in developing personal and business relationships. Slovenia is a country in a strategic position at the heart of Central Europe surrounded by Italy, Croatia, Hungary and Austria, with some 46.6km of coastline on the Adriatic Sea. With a population of 2,055,496 million inhabitants (2012) and a total land mass of 20,273 km2, Slovenia is a small country. Its capital, Ljubljana, is also the largest city, followed by: Maribor, Kranj, Celje, Koper and Nova Mesto. The general population density is 101 inhabitants per km2, although internal migration between regions and immigration from businessculture.org   Content  Slovenia  
  • 5.            |  5     abroad have been growing lately. Over 80% of the population belong to the Slovene ethnic group and the remainder is made up of Serbs, Croats, Bosnians and various others. As a member of the European Union, Slovenia has adopted the Euro as its official currency. Like other European countries, Slovenia adheres to Central European Time (CET) in winter and Central European Summer Time (CEST) from the last Sunday in March to the last Sunday in October. Xenophobia:  being  a  foreigner  in  Slovenia   In Slovenia, organizational structure is important in determining peoples’ attitudes in a business environment. There is generally a top-down approach to management, whereby the most significant business decisions are made by the top management. The largest organisations are either under government control or the government has the ability to veto any decision it does not like, which can dramatically slow down the negotiation process. Slovenian attitudes to business are comparable to that of the Germans and Austrians. After the experience of transitioning to a market economy, Slovenians have become much more aware of foreign business cultures and attitudes. So, foreign business professionals are now accorded respect based on their personal knowledge and abilities, rather than a historical appreciation for anything foreign. Slovenians are punctual and like others to be on time to their meetings. Being late is considered extremely rude, demonstrating a lack of respect and a sign of not taking things seriously. If you are going to be late, it is important to call ahead to apologise and give a valid reason for the delay. International  business  in  Slovenia   Slovenians are interested to be connected and integrated in international business environment. They are concern of the products and services quality. Companies are generally adopting high standards strategies and focus on the market segments interest in high technology or quality. They are open to ‘import’ best practice from others, especially from foreigners with previous experience. The business culture of other countries is also a subject of interest since they are also interested in ‘exporting’ their products, services and knowledge. General  educations   businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 6.            |  6     In Slovenia, the general level of education is impressive, with a literacy level of 99.7%. A significant proportion of the population consists of university graduates and many of the people aged between 25 and 64 have a higher education qualification. Most managers have a significant level of education, having obtained both undergraduate and postgraduate degrees. Moreover, younger managers can now travel to other European countries or North America to undertake their postgraduate education or gain further professional practical experience. The population’s ICT skills vary according to age, with the younger generations recording the highest proportions of computer literacy. Slovenia has a high degree of computer usage in the normal workplace and office environment. Educational  standards   The education system in Slovenia is provided by the state for the compulsory levels from basic to upper secondary. Teaching is mainly done in Slovenian with regional exceptions, where education is bilingual or learning a second language is compulsory. In the Hungarian speaking region, bilingual teaching is preferred and teachers are expected to be fluent in both languages. Whereas in the Italian region, schools either provide instruction in Italian with Slovene as a compulsory subject, or the reverse where classes are taught in Slovene and Italian is a compulsory subject. Other minority languages are widely spoken in Slovenia, but there is no formal provision for them in the education system. International schools are present in Slovenia and provide education entirely in English or French and may offer some tuition in Slovene. Higher education is provided by both public and private universities, with programmes being delivered in Italian, English, French or German. The cost of tuition is paid for by the state or by the student, depending on the university, subject and academic achievement. The higher education system in Slovenia is organised according to the Bologna system using ECTS and the three levels of study, undergraduate, postgraduate and doctoral. The Slovenian education system is governed by two ministries, the Ministry of Education and Sport is responsible for undergraduate education and the Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Technology oversees advanced academic education and research. A great deal of attention is paid to students’ involvement in research programmes. • businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 7.            |  7     Other  issues  such  as  transport  infrastructure   The labour market is relatively stable in Slovenia, with most internal migration being from rural to urban areas by people in search of work. However, the mobility of labour is restricted by the fact that although foreign workers have more or less equal rights when they are in a job, new austerity measures introduced since 2007 have affected foreign workers’ access to jobs and protection from discrimination. The austerity measures have also seen increases in the numbers of Slovenian workers travelling to other European member states in search of better jobs. Cultural  taboos   Safe topics of discussion include showing an appreciation for your experience of visiting Slovenia in terms of its countryside, culture and sports. Slovenia is considered to have very beautiful countryside and it might be appropriate to ask about what you should see and do, if you have time during your visit. Subjects that should be avoided include any comparisons between Slovenia and other former Yugoslavian countries and any reference to the Second World War. Also, Slovenia’s position in Europe should always be referred to as Central European. It is not a good idea to openly criticise other business partners in front of your Slovenian partner and Slovenian business practice advises that nothing defamatory should be said about your competitors. In Slovenia, it is advisable to avoid mixing business with pleasure. Specifically, you should avoid asking about intimate personal or confidential subjects, especially questions concerning your host’s personal finances. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 8.            |  8     Business  Communication   Communication is important for Slovenian business men, but this doesn’t make them very friendly from the beginning. Direct communication is appreciated to start a business relationship as an opportunity to know the partner and to get trust. Their communication style is closer to German and Nordics. Face-­to-­face  communication   Slovenians prefer face-to-face communication with a potential business partner, which gives them the opportunity to meet someone in person to look them in the eyes and gain a measure of their trustworthiness. Non-verbal communications are vital in this part of the world; not making direct eye contact will be considered a sign of disinterest and that you may be trying to hide something. Overall, attitudes to business and professionalism in Slovenia are very similar to those of Germany and Austria. During the first meeting, business partners will closely adhere to the formal rules of protocol and procedures, but as a relationship develops, meetings will gradually become more informal. Language  matters   Slovene belongs to the family of South Slavic languages and Slovenians generally speak more than one language. The most popular foreign languages in Slovenia are primarily English, followed by Italian and German, which tend to be spoken most often near the Italian and Austrian borders, respectively. Learning a few basic words in the local language is always a good idea and the ability to say something like ‘hello’ or ‘good morning’ in Slovene would be a pleasant surprise to your host. As Slovenian society is rather formal in its approach to business, it is advisable to adopt a more formal style and wait for the relationship to develop into a friendship before allowing too much familiarity in the conversation. The Slovenian language differentiates between the singular, familiar ‘you’ and the plural, polite ‘you’ form of addressing people. It is important to note that being on first name terms businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 9.            |  9     does not automatically mean that the relationship has developed to the point of a friendship. So, you should always use the polite form of address, until invited by your business partner to address them on more familiar terms. It is always appreciated when a foreigner makes the effort to learn a few basic Slovenian words. Some useful words and phrases in Slovenian are: English-­Slovenian  Vocabulary   • Yes!: Ja! [ya] • No!: Ne! [ne] • Please!: Prosim! [prohsim] • Excuse me!: Oprostite! [oprohsteeteh] • Thank you!: Hvala! [hvaala] • Good morning!: Dobro jutro! [dobro yootro] • Good afternoon!: Dober dan! [dohber daan] • Goodnight!: Lahko noc! [ laahko nohch] • Goodbye!: Na svidenje! [na sveedenye] • What is your name?: Kako vam je ime? [kakoh vam yeh imeh] • My name is…: Ime mi je… [imeh mi yeh] • How are you?: Kako ste? [kakoh ste] • Fine, thanks, and you?: Dobro, hvala. Pa vi? [dobro hvaala. pa vi] • I understand!: Razumem! [razoomem] • I don’t understand!: Ne razumem! [ne razoomem] • Do you speak English?: Govorite anglesko? [Govoreete anglehshko] • I speak a little English!: Govirim malo anglescine [govoreem maalo anglehshcheeneh] • Maybe!: Mogoce [mogotche] • Zero: nicx; one: ena; two: dva; three: tri; four: sxtiri; five: pet; six: sxest; seven: sedem; eight: osem; nine: devet; ten: deset. • Monday: ponedeljek; Tuesday: torek; Wednesday: sreda; Thursday: četertek; Friday: petek; Saturday: sobota; Sunday: nedelja. Business  relationship   Business relationships in Slovenia, just as in many other countries worldwide, are dependent on developing personal contacts and spending time on building trust and getting to know one another. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 10.            |  10     First contact with a potential partner in Slovenia is normally by fax or email, and should be followed up with a letter. If they are interested in forming a business relationship, they will usually reply within a short period of time. Once a relationship has been established, it is easy to get to a verbal agreement, which should then be drawn up and confirmed in writing. Written agreements are important to ensure that all parties have a clear understanding of what has been agreed, what is expected of them and clarify any specific terms and conditions that may apply. Also, by circulating the agreement in written form, participants are given the opportunity to correct any misinterpretations and address any areas of concern. Making  contact   It is advised that foreign business partners should make their first contact in written form, by letter, email or fax. Communications should be addressed directly to a specific person who is able to make a quick decision, such as the Managing Director. If the person you are in contact with speaks English, then the best and fastest way of communicating is to make direct contact by telephone. It is also useful to meet with representatives of Slovenian companies through attending relevant business fairs, seminars, and conferences in Slovenia and abroad. Personal  titles   In the Slovenian business community, people tend to use titles with surnames, when addressing each other. In conversation, titles are used according to the person’s education or position in the company. After graduating from university, a person may use the title of ‘Diplomiran’ or ‘Master’, depending on the level of studies they have completed. On completion of a doctorate, a person would normally use the title of ‘Doctor’, or ‘Professor’ if they are using their qualification to teach in an academic institution. Therefore, a person may be addressed as ‘Doctor Golob’ or “Professor Znanosti”, irrespective of gender. The use of academic titles in the business environment, such as professor (Prof.) or doctor of science (Doktor Kocjan – PhD), increase the level of respect that individual is accorded, especially among the older generation. When addressing someone, the academic titles mentioned on the business card prevail over business titles. Where a person does not specify academic titles on their business card, it may be appropriate to address them by their position in the company, for example ‘Mr. Director’. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 11.            |  11     Business  Etiquette     Slovenians consider themselves as professionals, which mean they are trustworthy, determined and straight forward. They are asking the same from their partners. They are very well educated, many of them holding master degrees in prestigious universities abroad. Hey are aware of the benefit of a partnership with a foreign company, but you should convince them about the benefits your proposal brings in. Corporate  social  responsibility   The Slovenian Environment Agency is a department of the Ministry of the Environment and Spatial Planning that is responsible for monitoring the environment and enforcing environmental protection and conservation measures. Slovenia has taken a two-phased approach to environmental protection by levying fines and penalties on companies polluting the environment, while providing initiatives to encourage the adoption of new technologies and processes that are more environmentally-friendly. A lot of government funds have been invested to upgrade the public transportation infrastructure, improve the quality of waste and water treatment, and provide recycling points on every street for glass, plastic and metal collection. Due to legislative and educational changes, people are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits of a cleaner environment and more sympathetic to environmental conservation. Slovenia is now an environmentally-aware country and has signed a number of international agreements for the protection of the environment: Air Pollution, Climate Change-Kyoto Protocol, Air Pollution-Sulphur 94, Hazardous Wastes, Climate Change, Biodiversity, Desertification, Endangered Species, etc. Punctuality Slovenian businessmen are very punctual and hate waiting for participants to arrive at a meeting. Being late shows a marked lack of respect and complete disinterest in the matters to be discussed. If a potential business partner cannot arrive on time to a meeting, then it is unlikely that a business relationship will be taken seriously. Gift giving businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 12.            |  12     Generally, it is not common practice to give gifts at a first meeting. However, a little souvenir would be acceptable, such as a country guide, a bottle of wine, or some type of branded corporate gift. Gifts are usually given at the end of a meeting, as opposed to when you arrive and it is advisable to bring inexpensive presents, so that your host is not put in a difficult position. Most companies have a ceiling on the value of a gift that can be accepted, whereby an expensive present would have to be reported to senior management or refused, due to antibribery and corruption policies. Business  dress  code   The Slovenian business community considers appearance important and Slovenians tend to spend a lot on designer clothing and jewellery, as the ability to dress well is an expression of social status, affluence and personal success. The way Slovenians dress is also a demonstration of individual style and personal taste. However, you should choose conservative business attire and avoid bright colours when attending a business meeting, if you want to be taken seriously. For men, a dark coloured suit or jacket and trousers with tie is appropriate business wear, and women should wear something similarly formal and avoid anything that might be considered provocative. Companies usually have some form of dress code, with larger companies adopting a more formal style and smaller companies preferring their employees to dress in a more business casual style. Bribery  and  corruption   Bribery and corruption are present in Slovenia, in both private and public institutions. Both foreign and local business people may sometimes use bribery as a business tool to secure contracts or cut through bureaucratic red tape, when trying to get government contracts or even start a new business. Slovenia ranks 37th in the Transparency International Corruption Perceptions Index (2012), which charts levels of corruption in 176 countries, and is therefore one of the least corrupt countries in the world. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 13.            |  13     Business  Meeting  Etiquette     Slovenians takes business meeting very seriously and they prepare it carefully. They are expecting the partner to be prepared to present the products, services and the proposal, and to be able to answer to additional questions. The first meeting is dedicated to know each other and even if a strict agenda is not necessary the objectives should be clearly stated. Importance  of  business  meetings   Hierarchy is an essential part of the Slovenian business community and a person’s level of education and experience is important for their status and career progression. People are accorded respect for their title and position within the company hierarchy. Slovenian managers are used to a western style of management and doing business. During a first meeting, it is traditional for Slovenians to exchange business cards. You should ensure that your card includes your academic titles and position at work to properly introduce yourself. Usually, a first meeting will not follow a set agenda, but will be used as a general introduction, so that both parties can get to know each other and establish whether there is enough potential for useful collaboration. It generally takes a number of meetings before an agreement can be reached, as most Slovenian companies are hierarchic and it is senior management that makes the major decisions. Decision-making power is rarely delegated to someone below senior management and family-owned companies are the fastest growing type of enterprise. Business  meeting  planning   When proposing a meeting, it is important to offer several dates for your Slovenian partner to be able to choose from, to include your reasons for requesting the meeting and to state who you would like to participate in the meeting. The months of July and August should be avoided, as this is when most Slovenians take their summer holidays and companies may be closed or operating with reduced staffing levels. If you are looking for a quick decision, it is advisable to include key decision makers in your invitation and ensure that someone of equal businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 14.            |  14     status will be representing your company in the meeting. It is expected that you will be able to provide a list of your company representatives, including their job titles and a brief bio of each person, to allow the Slovenian company to invite appropriate attendees. Where possible, try to get a written confirmation of the exact time and place of the meeting, along with a list of the Slovenian representatives. The best time for a business meeting is between 9am and 12pm, because lunch is normally taken between 12pm and 3pm. Slovenians may alternatively have a ‘late lunch’ between 3pm and 5pm. The meeting host is normally responsible for reservation of the venue, including the arrangement of any equipment, facilities and refreshments that may be required. It is good to agree on the language of the meeting beforehand and, if necessary, arrange with the host to have an interpreter present. If you will be using an interpreter, it is useful to provide them with copies of the presentation and supporting documentation in advance, so that can become familiar with the subject matter. For most business meetings, it is helpful to bring marketing materials, product samples and supporting documentation to leave with your host. In Slovenia, business is heavily regulated and businesses are required to have, some how, local government authorisation for every major decision and contract agreement. Foreign companies often find it essential to employ a Slovenian in a management position, even though the network of local agents, advisers, consultants and lawyers willing to act for foreign companies is well-developed. Negotiation  process   Negotiation in Slovenia is a bit of a give and take. To obtain a win-win situation, show the Slovenians their personal and corporate benefits, for the deal to have great chances of success. When negotiating, senior managers from the older generation usually like to take their time before coming to a decision. Moreover, they dislike being rushed and resent aggressive negotiating behaviour; they also tend to prefer to talk to someone in their own age group. Though not emotionally attached, they will endeavour to create a friendly atmosphere and try to be humorous. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 15.            |  15     Managers from the younger generation are more westernised, as many have studied for their postgraduate degree in Western Europe or America, and their negotiating style will be more American than Slovenian. When making a presentation, it is important to ensure that all the research has been done to provide a valid and convincing argument that will give good reasons to gain the Slovenians’ involvement. A key issue will be the benefits of the partnership to the host company. To substantiate their reputation, the Slovenians will present a list of references from their business partners and will expect you to reciprocate with references from your own partners, where possible. Negotiation with the public sector usually takes longer than with the private sector and other key factors in concluding business deals are product or service quality and the flexibility to negotiate on price. Once a verbal agreement has been reached, the Slovenians will expect a written contract to be drawn up with the terms and conditions detailed in full, to make the agreement official. Meeting  protocol   When greeting your business partners, you should maintain direct eye contact, give a firm handshake and state your name clearly, before offering your business card face up. Direct eye contact and smiling are important to convey sincerity and trustworthiness. It is customary to shake hands with all the participants on arrival and at the end of a meeting, greeting the women first and then the men. Because Slovenians do not have a close contact culture, it is good to remember to keep a moderate interpersonal distance (1 to 1.5m) and avoid excessively familiar gestures like hugging, kissing or slapping on the back. When you are being introduced, you should address people with their formal titles and family names, showing an appreciation and respect for their status. The level of formality should be very high at first and you should wait for your partner to propose any informal terms or invite you to address them by their first name. Being on first name terms is an indication that the business relationship has developed to a more familiar level. How  to  run  a  business  meeting   For Slovenians, it is important to establish a personal relationship before discussing business. The person chairing the meeting will almost certainly be the most senior representative of the businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 16.            |  16     Slovenian company and they will set the pace of the meeting and the overall negotiation. During these meetings, coffee, juice and sometimes a sandwich or buffet will be provided. If you are invited to dinner or drinks for the evening after a meeting, you should accept. Social occasions are used to establish personal relationships and will help create a better foundation for developing business relations. Follow  up  letter  after  meeting  with  client   The host usually prepares the minutes of the meeting, which should summarise the main points of the discussion, present the overall conclusions and provide a detailed list of action items and dates by which they should be completed. The minutes will normally be circulated within a few days of the meeting, giving the meeting participants the opportunity to comment and allow for any modifications, before a formal agreement is written up. If it has been agreed to continue with the partnership, a timetable showing the responsibilities of both business partners will be formulated, including fixed deadlines, dates and places of future meetings etc. If any of the partners do not consider their future cooperation to be beneficial, they are free to withdraw from negotiations at this early stage without reservation. Regardless of how successful a meeting has been, it is good to write to your hosts, thanking them for their time and effort. Business  meals   Socialising and hospitality make significant contributions to good business relations in Slovenia. Slovenians enjoy business meals; for them, meals are an opportunity to discuss subjects in a more relaxed atmosphere and get to know their partners and colleagues on a more personal level. Given that Slovenians prefer to discuss business with a person they know, decisions may be made during social occasions as easily as in an office environment. Although a meeting to finalise the details of business negotiations usually takes place in the more formal setting of the company office. The dress code for lunch and dinner is typically formal, for both men and women. Business  meetings  tips   businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 17.            |  17     Slovenian hosts expect their partners to come prepared and confident, without any preconceptions and behave in a modest fashion. Any opinions should be presented, but not forced, so as to give the Slovenian representatives enough opportunity to express their own ideas and ways of looking at things. Equality, respect and openness are essential at the negotiation table. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 18.            |  18     Internship  and  placement     Work  experience   Student placements are designed to allow their participants to obtain practical experience, which improves their future employability and competitiveness in the labour market. It has been found that, placements can also be of great benefit to recent graduates, school age children, workers and the unemployed. Placements in Slovenia are available to foreign candidates, if they have an organisation in their home country that will sponsor the placement and if they find a suitable host organization in Slovenia. Two EU programmes were developed to provide financial assistance and a support framework for developing European placement opportunities and exchange programmes, the Erasmus and Leonardo Da Vinci programmes. Information about student placements in Slovenia is available from the Centre of the Republic of Slovenia for Mobility and European Educational and Training Programmes (CMEPIUS). Internship  and  placement  advice   In Slovenia the internship and placement is usual and appreciate by the students and employers as a professional tool of getting skills. The attitude is similar with the attitudes in the countries with long experience and the implementing system is similar with other western European countries. Social  security  and  European  health  insurance  card   Any visitor who intends to stay in Slovenia for a period longer than 90 days must register with their local administrative unit and provide details of their place of residence within the first three months. EU students may need the following documentation to obtain their residence permit: • a certificate of enrolment, • a valid identity card or passport, • proof of sufficient means of subsistence, • proof of suitable health insurance. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 19.            |  19     Residence permits are issued either for the duration of the academic course that the student is enrolled on; or for one year, renewable on an annual basis, if the student is studying for a longer period of time. While they are studying at university, students are entitled to apply for part-time or seasonal jobs through employment agencies or directly to advertised positions. Salaries for part-time and temporary positions are normally based on an hourly or piece rate, or paid on commission. In order to sign an employment contract and be eligible to work in Slovenia, a student must be able to provide proof of identity, proof of student status, a local bank account, and a local tax registration number, meaning that they have to open a bank account and register as a tax payer first. Students are also required to take out private insurance for the entire period of their stay in Slovenia to cover all possible medical and public liability expenses. e-Študentski servis is a service provided by the Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs to support foreign students in finding jobs in Slovenia during their stay. Safety   In Slovenia, as in any European country you should be precut about your and your belonging safety. Never leave your luggage unattended in public spaces. Be careful where you keep the documents and money. It is better to ask if the area you are leaving is secure in the night and the hour is better to be back. Do  I  need  a  visa?   A citizen of the European Union does not require a visa in order to enter and reside in Slovenia for a period of up to 90 days, provided that they present a valid passport or national identity card. For a visit of more than 90 days, an EU citizen must register to the local administration. Internship  and  placement  salary   In Slovenia, the internship is mostly unpaid, but part time jobs are. The wages is generally at the bottom level and depends on hours, position and results. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 20.              |  20   Students in placement could ask for a recommending letter and apply for permanent jobs after graduation in the companies they had the placement. Internship  and  placement  accommodation   Students have two main options for accommodation, either to rent a room in a student hostel, or to rent a private room or flat. Foreign students can stay in a student hostel only if they are in receipt of a scholarship from the Slovenian Government or if this is stated in bilateral or other international agreements. In September and October, when the demand for accommodation is high, the prices also rise. In the case of private accommodation, the costs of utilities and services are not normally included in the monthly rent and most private landlords will require a substantial security deposit. Therefore, it is extremely important to have a detailed breakdown of accommodation costs and estimated living expenses, prior to signing any rental agreement. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 21.            |  21     Cost  of  Living     The cost of living for a foreign student in Slovenia could be less then in his country of origin and depends on the options he takes. Accommodation is about 100-150 €/month in the dormitories provided by the universities, but could be of about 200-300 €/month for private rented flats. Costs of meals on the universities facilities are about 3-5 €/meal, that means 100-150 €/month. Urban public transport card is about 20 €/month. The ERASMUS subsistence grant for Slovenia is about €500 per month, which is enough to successfully cover the costs of living. Books and study materials are provided with special prices and discounts. Money  and  banking   The official currency used to be Slovenian tolar (SIT). As Slovenia is a EU country and became an EMU member from 1.1.2007, now its official currency is EUR. The banking system is according to the European regulation and all the payments instruments are available. Traveling  costs   Urban travel is generally provided by buses, trams and metro. Bikes are good options for students, low costs and fast in cloudy traffic hours. Interurban travel by train or cars benefits by good networks that reach all the places around the country. Costs are affordable for all categories. Driving a car requests a valid European or international driving license. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 22.            |  22     Work-­‐life  Balance     In every culture, it is essential to know about the prevailing attitudes and values, as they may help decipher peoples’ ways of thinking and behaviour, which in turn helps in the development of good relationships. By understanding the attitudes and values of a society, it is possible to gain insights into their probable actions and reactions in different situations. Slovenian business etiquette is said to be similar to that of the Germans and Austrians, in that they like hard work and do not mind working long hours. Slovenian employees have similar problems to other western employees in terms of a poor work-life balance and lack of flexible working conditions or support for family responsibilities. Working long hours, having limited annual or parental leave, lacking flexible working hours or help with day-care for working mothers are common complaints. Indeed, the facilities available to Slovenian employees are far fewer compared to other member states of the European Union. Nevertheless, in recent years, companies have begun to offer extra benefits to their employees, including flexible hours for working mothers, paternity leave, and study leave for work-related courses. National  holidays   The dates of public holidays in Slovenia include: • 1st January – New Year • 8th February – Slovenian Day of Culture • Good Friday and Easter Monday – Easter falls on a different date in late March or early April each year. • 27th April – Resistance Day • 1st May – Labour Day • 8th June – Pentecost • 25th June – National Public Day – Independence Day • 15th August – Day of the Assumption • 17th August – Day of Slovenes in Prekmurje Incorporated into the Mother Nation • 15th September – Restauration Day • 31st October – Reformation Day businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 23.            |  23     • 1st November – All Saints Day • 23rd November – Rudolf maister Day • 25th December – Christmas Day • 26th December – Independence and Unity Day In Slovenia, employees have the right to four weeks holiday a year. These holidays are normally divided between winter and summer. The younger generation prefer to go skiing for two weeks in February or March, while families with children will usually go to the seaside during July or August. Working  hours   The official working week in Slovenia follows the European standard of 40 hours, with 8 hours per day. However, many people work 10 hours a day in the private sector. Working hours depend on the place of work, with large companies usually starting their work day at between 8am and 9am and allowing for a 30 minute lunch break. Unofficially, many people work until about 6 pm, even though their work day finishes at between 4.30pm and 5pm. In public institutions, the work day starts earlier than in the private sector, at between 7.30am and 8am and finishes after 8 hours. Work  culture   The work in Slovenia is subject of the legislation that is similar with other countries in Europe. Being open to the foreigners this permits their employment. At the same time they are very supportive with local work force so, don’t be offended if a Slovenian is preferred in stead of you to take a job. Slovenians are taking their jobs seriously and they are hard workers and professionals. Health  insurance   In July 2004, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) replaced the former E111 form and is issued by the national health care providers in each EU member state. As a citizen of the European Union, you are entitled to the same free or subsidised healthcare services and emergency medical treatment as Slovenian citizens. However, this is not a replacement for private medical insurance and the EHIC does not cover treatment in private clinics, special medical treatment or repatriation. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 24.              |  24   Regular business hours for pharmacies are from 8am to 6pm on weekdays and only some designated pharmacies stay open 24 hours a day and on holidays. The national emergency telephone number for the ambulance service, fire department and rescue teams is 112 and the number 113 is for the police. businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 25.            |  25     Social  Media  Guide     Private  individuals   Almost three-quarters of the Slovenian population used the Internet in 2012, with most having access to broadband internet. According to statistics from Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, the majority of internet use is home-based and users range in age from 10 years old to 74. The primary use is for correspondence, with more than half of internet users sending and receiving email. The internet is also seen as a means of finding information about offers for goods and services, as well as a general source of information. About 30% of internet users play or download games, music, and movies and approximately the same number use the internet for accessing travel and accommodation services. Online shopping covers a large variety of goods and services, but Slovenian ecommerce is mostly concentrated on clothing, books, sports equipment, electronic devices and ticket sales. Public services are accessed through internet by about 47% of users for finding information, downloading forms, sending forms or complaints. Social media usage in Slovenia is about 47% with several networks focusing on the youth audience of between the ages of 16 to 24. Online networks are being used primarily for instant messages, chats, forums and blogs. One-third of Slovenian internet users are using mobile devices, including notebooks, mobile phones and tablets and the number of mobile internet users is growing. The statistics show that mobile internet is used mainly by young people aged 16 to 24, by more educated users, and by more men than women. Internet usage in business is essential since 97% of companies are now connected to internet and more than 60% are using mobile services. Business use of the internet is primarily focussed on advertising and approximately three-quarters of businesses have a website or web page promoting their products or services. More and more companies are also using electronic information systems for customer relationship management, invoicing and ecommerce, so increasing attention is being paid to internet services and applications. Search  and  Social  Media  Marketing  for  International  Business   businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 26.            |  26     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) • • 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 businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 27.            |  27     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= 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 businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 28.            |  28     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? 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 businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 29.            |  29     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? 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 businessculture.org     Content  Slovenia  
  • 30.            |  30     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  Slovenia  
  • 31.              |  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  Slovenia