Have a look at below film! This is our PM Mark Rutte and what he does is so typically Dutch! The Welcome Kit which we present to our customers carries the book “Dealing with the Dutch” written by Jacob Vossestein. Although he wrote it some time ago, the Dutch values he describes are of all times.
- low hierarchy
- directness and critical attitude
- pragmatisme and money mindedness
- bureaucratic and yet tolerant
- internationalism and openness
One chapter in his book goes into hierarchy and the Dutch problem with it.
“Obviously, there is no such thing as a checklist of Dutch cultural characteristics. Yet, the Dutch increasingly discuss the question as to what exactly Dutch identity is and what sets the Dutch apart from other nations. In such discussions, journalists and philosophers often come to the conclusion that one major factor at the heart of Dutch culture is egalitarianism. A sense of everyone being equal from a moral point of view. Although there certainly are financial aspects to this also, the underlying ethical principle is that everyone should have the same opportunities and that no matter what people’s position in society, high or low, they should be treated equally and with fairness, and treat others with due respect as well.
The major condition is low profile behaviour. If people do indeed occupy a high place in society, they shouldn’t openly pride themselves on it, while those in more lowly positions have the right to speak up on balance.”
Our PM is setting a fine example of it!
I invite you to read the book and get more insight into us, the Dutch. We use it as part of our staff training. Only when you understand your own culture, you will be able to relate to the culture of others!