Business Etiquette

Business etiquette

Attitudes and values form the basis of any particular culture. It is reflecting the way people think and how they behave. Knowledge of these values and attitudes is of high importance. Especially if you wish to communicate effectively with your counterparts. Ignorance of values can result in a cultural barriers. These barriers may hinder the communication process. It can also have a bad effect on the success of your activities in a given country. Within place of work, business etiquette differs depending on what country you are working within. It is a framework for knowing what is central in a workplace. It is also also important for knowing how you should behave and how you should build relationships with others. This post will describe the most important set of norms and manners that dominates the business etiquette in Denmark.

Informal business culture

The business ambience in Denmark is informal. Their business culture is is ranked as the least complexed in the world. A reason for that, is the culture of equality at work. The hierarchies in Denmark are often flat.  You are supposed to treat your boss they way you treat anyone else at your work. In many cases, the boss prefer to be a part of the team instead of being a dominant boss. Trust and responsibility is also an important aspect of business etiquette in Denmark. The working place is often defined by reliable and honest people. And also with a high degree of independence.

More information about Denmark’s low complex business culture can be found here:

Business etiquette and Punctuality

An important key of business etiquette in Denmark is being punctual. They also expect that you will do likewise. Danes take punctuality for business meetings very seriously. They are hardworking people who means that each minute spent on the job should be productive and effectively used. It is important that you arrive on time for both work and meetings. You should make a call with an explanation if you are delayed. Meetings are punctual and will always begin and end on time. This is also something that you should have in mind when attending to social meetings.

Business etiquette and gift giving

Important to remember is that it is not common with gifts when doing business. Although, when you are invited to someone’s private home you should bring flowers or a bottle of wine. Unlike in many other countries, roses are okay gifts for you host or hostess. Though, be sure you don’t give white roses. The white color is associated with mourning. If you do give flowers, be sure they are wrapped. Other useful gifts could be a box of chocolate or desk items with your company’s logo.

There is complex law regarding business gifts in Denmark. While it is not a common practice to give gifts at business meetings, it is not completely forbidden either. If it looks as the business is going well, then a small gift may be given to your contact after agreements have been signed. If you happen to receive a gift in return, you should  open it in front of the person rather than waiting.

Dressing etiquette

Another important part of business etiquette in Denmark to be aware of the dress code. The informal attitude of the Danes is expressed in a relaxed but still conservative dress code. While many businessmen prefer a suit and a tie, it is not uncommon to see them in more casual clothing. This, especially in meetings with contacts they already know. Women also dress relatively casually. However, it is always good to pay some attention to your choice of clothes in a new job.

When you are working in Denmark, the easiest and safest way to dress is in a polished yet understated way. You are expected to look professional and well dressed. You should also keep it low-key and remember that cleanliness are of high importance. Suits are not as common as, for example in the US but if you are doing business with high-ranking executives, a suit is expected. Women often wear pant suits to work.

High-ranking Danish executives often host black-tie dinners. Male executives should then bring a tuxedo along. Women will need an evening dress if you are anticipating in such an invitation.

Bribery and corruption

The organization Transparency International, did a survey in 2005 on the most corrupted country. In this survey, Denmark was ranked as being the world’s 4th least corrupt country. This, after Iceland, Finland and New Zealand. Denmark also has one of the lowest crime rates in the world. This makes the country attractive as a business environment but also attractive for your personal life.

Do you want to learn more about Danish business culture?