Localization: Training & Development in Norway

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By Jen Weaver, Carmazzi Global Solutions

NorwayAs we make our way towards Scandinavia, let’s explore some common cultural facts about Norwegians and their expectations when it comes to T&D.

Test your knowledge of Norwegian culture with the Fun-Fact questions below:

  1. True or False. Norway remained neutral during World War I.
  2. True or False. Norway is a monarchy.

Quick Tips for Training & Development in Norway1:

  • As members of the least punctual culture in northern Europe, Norwegians often run 10 to 15 minutes late for appointments. Be prepared to wait, but always arrive promptly yourself. While it’s common for meetings to begin a bit behind schedule, be sure to end your classes on time, especially if they run until the end of the workday.
  • While English is widely known in Norway, the official language is Norwegian and may be the preferred language for use in your training materials. Even when fluent in English, many Norwegians prefer written communication in their native tongue.
  • More analytical than emotional, Norwegians tend to view outside information cautiously, and they are often slow to make decisions.
  • Communication is typically blunt and straightforward, and it’s the cultural norm to accept statements at face value.
  • Individual freedom and independence are highly valued. As such, any kind of debt is avoided, as it’s viewed as an impediment to one’s freedom.
  • Family units are perceived as a way to maintain stability and structure in life. Norway’s social welfare system perpetuates this support as well and is a great source of pride for the Norwegian people.
  • Gender roles are greatly minimized in Norwegian culture, as both parents share childcare responsibilities and women have great freedom in behavior and personal or professional aspirations.
  • Norwegians are quiet people, so avoid speaking too loudly or boisterously.
  • Talking with your hands in your pockets is considered too casual for business interactions, and the American “okay” gesture is perceived as rude.
  • Although Norway is a very affluent country, gift-giving is not acceptable in business interactions due to strict anti-bribery laws.

Fun-Fact Answers:

  1. Although it was occupied by Nazi Germany during World War II.
  2. It’s a constitutional monarchy with the king as chief of state.

Developing training & development materials for use in Norway? Contact Jen Weaver with Carmazzi Global Solutions for a free consultation.

References:

1Morrison, Terri, & Conaway, Wayne A. (2006). Kiss, bow, or shake hands (2nd ed.). Avon: Adams Media.

 

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