Successful Entertaining in Denmark

Business entertaining is less important in Denmark than in those cultures which put personal relationship-building very firmly at the top of their list of priorities.

However, if you are invited out for a business meal (usually lunch), ensure that you do not discuss business unless your host brings up the subject first. On the whole, meals are reserved for non-work related topics.

When eating a meal, it is best to try to finish the food on your plate. It is not customary (as in many Eastern cultures) to leave some food to show that you have been given enough to eat.
Although it would be unusual to be offered alcohol at a lunchtime meeting, alcohol would definitely be introduced over dinner. The drinking of alcohol is often accompanied by a series of toasts. These simply involve lifting your glass, looking at the person you are toasting in the eye and then lifting the glass again in honour of him or her.

Service charges are automatically added to restaurant bills in Denmark, so no further tipping is really required. Tipping for outstanding service is a matter of personal choice, but is not expected.

A brief overview of some key concepts to consider when doing business in Denmark

Written and Produced by Keith Warburton

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This country profile has been produced to give a short overview of some of the key concepts to bear in mind when doing business with contacts in Denmark. It is intended to be an aid to business people who have commercial dealings with counterparties in the country but should not be seen as an exhaustive guide to this topic or as a substitute for more substantial research should there be a need.

With this in mind, we have covered the areas which are key to a better understanding of the cultural mindset underpinning business dealings in Denmark and which are, quite often, extremely different from the approach and thought processes associated with business in other parts of the world.

Therefore this briefing note is broken into short, bite-sized sections on the following topics:

  • Background to business
  • Business Structures
  • Management style
  • Meetings
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Women in business
  • Entertaining
  • Top tips