The Finns come to decisions quickly, although there may well be more than one person involved in the decision-making process. Unlike the rest of Scandinavia, they certainly do not make decisions through committees. They have flat organizations, which means that anyone can approach the boss and voice their opinion. The boss will glean thoughts from everyone, even hold brainstorming sessions, but the Finnish boss is the final decision-maker. Once s/he has all the facts, a decision is made quickly and then any actions needed are taken immediately.
In my experience, the Finns become quite intolerant of the way the rest of Europe make decisions and get to the action. They cannot understand why it takes us so long; they are far more spontaneous than we are. If you are doing business with the Finns, it is important to note that you should be ready to implement any promises or any deals as soon as they are made. This will be their measure of your integrity as a business person.
Finns are self-disciplined, industrious individualists who like teamwork and team spirit. However, they often demonstrate inventiveness and individual lateral thinking. They like to be given responsibility and held accountable and work well under organization structures such as profit centers. Their responsibility and authority should be clearly defined because they like to be left alone to get on with their job. They intensely dislike close supervision. They openly share their knowledge and expertise; its part of their culture. Therefore, organizational learning is a key feature of Finnish business—no wonder they have created such a high-tech environment. For Finns, the good business consists of right action more than right words. They do things because they are the right things to do and have faith that this will deliver the best outcomes. They have an innate belief that «cooking with good ingredients» will always make a good dinner. This is not just another business philosophy, but part of their deep, inner-feelings—part of their psyche.
An example of right action: In Finland, animal health control schemes have been established for cattle herds, pig herds, and poultry flocks and are being planned for sheep flocks, goat herds, and reindeer. The purpose of the schemes is to improve and monitor measures relating to food safety, animal health and animal welfare at the farm level and improve the economic efficiency of domestic animal production. A nationwide computerized database collects data on how the scheme is being operated in the field and allows vets and farmers to input data directly. Finland adopted a zero-tolerance approach to infectious animal diseases and has totally managed to eradicate many such as salmonella in chickens and pork, and swine fever in pigs. They are the only country in the world to have done so and are currently described in a recent survey as having a «disease-free status». Other EU countries adopted a risk-containment strategy.