Does it happen to you that when you hear “North-Macedonia”, you immediately think of traditional and hard working people? If so, you will highly relate to the topic we will discuss here. And if not, you will find out more about the business culture in North-Macedonia and overall cultural diversity, which makes it a great destination for companies to offshore (parts of) their business to.
Located in the heart of the Balkan Peninsula, North-Macedonia is one of the smallest countries among its neighbours. But even if it covers a small territory, the cultural and ethnic diversity in North-Macedonia is relatively high. Its population consists of Macedonians, Albanians, Turks, Serbians, Vlachs and Roma people. And ever so often people from all over the world come to live in North-Macedonia because of its natural beauty, economic benefits and business culture.
With North-Macedonia’s long history, cultural remnants of countries that once occupied it, are still noticeable. You can see them in the different dialects and social customs across certain regions. North-Macedonia’s traditional customs are an inseparable part of the modern Macedonian society and its national business culture. The ethnic and cultural diversity and its distinctive approach to everything, don’t create significant obstacles to communication, as all citizens have equal civil rights and a good percentage of people have a high level of english proficiency. Especially the ones that work for the many international institutions and foreign companies that are active in the region. Having a small and open economy, North-Macedonia’s traditional economy is now industrialized and highly integrated within international trade. And the information and communication technology industry is one of the fastest growing areas of the economy.
As North-Macedonia is becoming a more relevant player in the global economy and businesses are orienting themselves more towards the area, it is essential to go over a few basic rules of etiquette.
- Punctuality in North-Macedonia is appreciated, but the people are not extremely rigid about it.
- For formal situations, the greetings, which are expressed through shaking hands, go according to hierarchical status, from higher to lower. And if there are women they are always the first to be greeted.
- Regular direct eye contact throughout the conversation may ensure for further positive communication, when having a business meeting or even a regular conversation.
- During your business meetings or negotiations, try to remember that Macedonians while being emotional, they also understand the importance of mutual benefit of decision-making. Finding a compromise is a big part of the business culture.
The work-life balance in North-Macedonia is stabilized with the official working time, which is from 8am until 4pm from Monday to Friday. The weekends are usually free, but many small private businesses also work on Saturday. Employees are authorized to have an annual leave of 20 to 26 working days per year, with up to seven days paid leave for death, marriage and other employer requirements.
Another important aspect relating to the business culture in North-Macedonia is that the average gross monthly salary is 700€. In accordance with EU standards, flexible employment and flexibility of working time are available here. With North-Macedonia’s aim of stimulating foreign investments, the government has implemented a flat rate tax of 10 to 15% on corporate income tax and personal income tax.
It is interesting, to say the least, working and living in a country with a high level of cultural diversity. Around each corner you could find a different part of history which will make you fall in love with the country even more! And a great plus is the business culture filled with hard-working people that will give you their absolute best.
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