Scan Magazine | Business | Column/Calendar
What about the workers? The pay of the CEOs of the FTSE100 went up by 11 per cent last year. The fat cats – average income 3.92 million GBP (that’s 1,000 GBP an hour) – had raked in by 4 January what it takes their average employee a year to earn. Remuneration committees – and government – have completely failed to address this deep flaw in modern capitalism. In Scandinavia, worker directors are part of the corporate landscape, and I have at least anecdotal evidence that trade unionists on the board act as a constraint on some of the worst excesses of executive pay. In France and Germany, works councils also encourage managements to pay heed to their most important stakeholders: their own workers. At European level, the EU requires companies with more than 1,000 employees and operating in at least two countries to establish a European Works Council (EWC). Managements must consult, though not negotiate, with employee representatives from the different national subsidiaries at least once a year on issues of transnational concern to companies’ employees.
Some EWCs are a badly organised waste of space, with impenetrable presentations from managers interspersed with droning speeches from left-wing politicos. But increasing numbers of EWCs have become important vehicles for two-way communication between employees and bosses at a panEuropean level. At one EWC meeting I observed recently, the well-organised members presented a series of policy proposals designed to ensure that best employment practices in the home country would be rolled out across all the subsidiaries, and that declared corporate values would be properly adhered to. They were greeted positively by the company’s employee relations director. “You are gaining in
By Steve Flinders strength and I welcome this,” he told them. “Your strength ultimately translates into greater strength for the company.” Such approaches foster partnership and trust between management and employees in European companies, the opposite of the cynicism that characterises the greed of the 1,000 GPB-per-hour CEOs.
Steve Flinders is a freelance trainer, writer and coach, based in Malta, who helps people develop their communication and leadership skills for working internationally: email@example.com
By Sanne Wass
Scandinavian business events you do not want to miss this month Social media workshop The Danish-UK Association presents this workshop on social media, hosted at Adwaiz, a London-based digital marketing agency. Participants will learn how to engage, influence and inspire social media audiences through the clever use of influencer marketing and eye-catching content, and also be taken through case studies such as Fyre Festival, the notorious influencer marketing scam from 2017. Speakers include Patrick Smith, Adwaiz CEO and the creator of Instagram’s famous Londonfoodboy. Date: 19 June 2019, 6.30-9.15pm Venue: Adwaiz, 71-73 Carter Lane, London EC4V 5EQ, UK. www.dkuk.org
NBCC annual summer BBQ in Aberdeen The Norwegian-British Chamber of Commerce’s annual summer BBQ in Aberdeen provides the perfect occassion to network with colleagues, business partners 104 | Issue 125 | June 2019
and other Norway-focused professionals. The event, which is open to both members and non-members, will also host a raffle in support of Maggie’s Centre and the Norwegian Church for Seafarers in Aberdeen. Date: 19 June 2019, 6-9pm Venue: The Park Café Hazlehead, Hazlehead Avenue, Aberdeen AB15 8BJ, UK www.nbccuk.com
Nordic Impact Business Summit The Nordic Impact Business Summit will debut in the Old Stock Exchange building in Copenhagen. According to the organisers, this event is “neither a trade show, a conference nor a pitch contest”. Instead, it’s a kind of matching day, pairing 50 promising Nordic impact companies with business developers, market experts and potential investors to help them improve their business and solutions for a better world. Date: 20 June 2019 Venue: Børsen, 1217 København K, Denmark www.oneinitiative.org
Startup Extreme Norway Once a year, some of the most influential figures in the world of tech make their way to Voss, in Norway, for Startup Extreme – a festival dedicated to fostering the growth of entrepreneurship. Describing the event as “a vibrant, humble and participatory festival”, the organisers aim to create an authentic way to showcase the pulse of the Norwegian and Nordic tech start-up scene. The event will take place over two days and involve outdoor activities, thought-provoking speeches and debates, performances and more. Date: 24-26 June 2019 Venue: Ekstremsportveko, Vangsgata 28, 5700 Voss, Norway. www.startupextreme.co
Promoting Brand Scandinavia! Including Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland and Iceland.