Written by Jean Paul Wyers, director and founder of the Protocolbureau and Institute of Protocol The Hague. Do you want to know more about protocol, click here.  

The Institute of Protocol The Hague experiences an increase in the demand for protocol since the start of the economic crisis. The university minor of the Institute at The Hague University became one of the largest minors with over 40 students participating. Also the number of subscriptions for the two day protocol training has doubled in the last two to three years. The Protocolbureau has seen a decline in luxurious events, but the demand for protocol support has increased over the last years.

How is this possible? 
Organisations understand more than ever that they have to make the most of their network. A good relationship with stakeholders remains important, but costly meetings are no longer being held. Modern protocol responds to this need, which explains the popularity. 

Most people associate protocol with strict rules of behaviour, but modern protocol is actually relationship management. Modern protocol is a tool to efficiently organise meetings and realise meaningful encounters.
Good examples are State Visits. A State Visit is not only a meeting between two Heads of State, at all levels meetings are being organised. 

The art of our profession is to avoid formality, things should feel natural. 
This is especially important outside the public sector. The Protocolbureau is also very active in the fashion industry, the financial sector and the cultural sector. The protocol then focusses not so much on dignitaries but on important clients, new clients or sponsors. For the rest, the use of protocol in these industries is exactly the same. 

Good eduction in protocol starts with the basics. The Institute of Protocol The Hague developed a two day protocol training in English about the complexities of protocol management. To what type of meeting is protocol applicable and how are these meetings organised? How should you deal with international guests and international protocol? 
The training is given by the most renowned Portuguese expert on corporate image and protocol Isabel Amaral, UK’s leading etiquette expert William Hanson, stagemanager and speech coach Marike Mingelen and the former Master of Ceremonies of H.M. the Queen, Gilbert Monod de Froideville

With The Hague University the Institute of Protocol The Hague developed a minor about modern protocol and relationship management. During ten weeks students learn how to develop a relationship management strategy and how to translate this strategy into effective meetings. The students are trained by international protocol and etiquette experts as well as by behavioural scientists, compliance and ethics officers, cross cultural managers, strategists and event marketing managers. Furthermore the minor includes a practical training at a fashion show, a visit to Europe’s capital Brussels, an etiquette dinner and several trainings in non-verbal communications.
The minor is for university students only. In 2014 the minor will be given as post-graduate to professionals. 

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