Dealing with the Dutch

In 1996 Jacob's bestseller Dealing with the Dutch was published for the first time. It lightheartedly describes how expats working in the Netherlands experience the behavior and mentality of their Dutch colleagues. Many literal quotes (often amusing) of people from all over the planet show their criticisms and amazement on their new surroundings here in the Netherlands. With their nationality added, quotes also reflect the speakers' own cultural standards. Jacob puts it all in perspective, providing the basic context on the how and whys of the Dutch situation.

Jacob was inspired to write Dealing with the Dutch by the frequent execution of a training program at Amsterdam's Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) called ‘Understanding the Dutch' that he organized for expats to the Netherlands. These training sessions started from participants' questions and own experiences in the first few months of their posting to the Netherlands. Modules included Dutch business culture, the outlines of Dutch social and political issues and bits of history and geography to put things into context.

Jacob tried to make participants' observations understandable and their Dutch work contacts easier. Since expat partners (who are not always allowed to work here) were also welcome to the program, some modules were geared at their position in the new country.

Dealing with the Dutch clearly filled a niche because after publication, with 30,000 copies sold in seven months, it topped the Dutch management book top-ten. Since then sales have remained good, so over the years twenty-three editions were published and the book has been updated four times.

Dealing with the Dutch is still available in the updated version of 2013. Buy it at a Dutch bookstore, order it through, or directly at LM Publishers.

A Dutch translation of Dealing with the Dutch was published in 1997, but the local demand was too modest for a second print.

In 2012, Jacob published another book in Dutch on foreigners' views of Dutch society and way of life, called Pas op, Nederlanders, meaning something like ‘Watch out, Dutch folks', with the same double-entendre. For more information, pleases refer to the Dutch section of this website.

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