Protocol popular in times of crisis

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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Dutch Flag Protocol (Nederlands vlaggen protocol volgens

In de Protocolmanual van het Protocolbureau staat:
Het vlaggenprotocol is een afspiegeling van de préséance. De vlaggen hangen in dezelfde volgorde. Bij het bepalen van het protocol voor vlaggen gaat men met de rug naar de mast staan. Midden is 1, rechts 2 en links 3. Vlaggen van landen hangen op volgorde van het franse alfabet. Commerciële vlaggen vallen niet onder het protocol. Een vlag wordt alleen gehesen indien de vlag door een persoon vertegenwoordigd wordt. In Nederland is de Nederlandse vlag altijd nummer 1.

Wanneer kan ik de vlag uithangen en wat is de vlaginstructie?

Voor het uithangen van de vlag vanaf rijksgebouwen heeft de minister-president een vlaginstructie vastgesteld. Deze vlaginstructie geldt ook voor lokale overheden. Er wordt onderscheid gemaakt tussen ‘uitgebreid vlaggen’ (UV) en ‘beperkt vlaggen’ (BV). Bij UV wordt de vlag uitgestoken van alle rijksgebouwen, zoals gebruikelijk is op Koninginnedag. Bij BV hoeft de vlag alleen te worden uitgestoken van de hoofdgebouwen van de ministeries en die van instellingen als de Kamers der Staten-Generaal, de Raad van State, de Algemene Rekenkamer, de Nationale Ombudsman, het Kabinet der Koningin en de Hoge Raad der Nederlanden.

De Nederlandse vlag op rijksgebouwen wordt uitgehangen op de volgende dagen:
31 januari (1 februari): verjaardag Koningin Beatrix (BV);
27 april (28 april): verjaardag Prins Willem-Alexander (BV);
30 april (29 april): Koninginnedag (UV);
4 mei: Dodenherdenking, vlag halfstok, 18.00 uur tot zonsondergang (UV);
5 mei: Bevrijdingsdag (UV);
17 mei (18 mei): verjaardag Prinses Máxima (BV);
Laatste zaterdag in juni: Veteranendag (UV);
15 augustus (16 augustus): formeel einde Tweede Wereldoorlog (UV);
Derde dinsdag van september: Prinsjesdag (alleen in Den Haag) (UV);
7 december (8 december): verjaardag Prinses Catharina-Amalia (BV);
15 december (16 december): Koninkrijksdag (BV).
Als de dag waarop de vlag wordt uitgestoken op een zondag of christelijke feestdag valt, geldt de datum tussen haakjes.

Uithangen en hijsen van de vlag
Een gehesen vlag mag nooit de grond raken of het verkeer hinderen, ook niet als de vlag halfstok hangt. De vlaggenstok moet dus een goede lengte hebben. Vlaggen mogen niet tussen zonsondergang en zonsopgang worden gehesen of blijven hangen. De vlag mag wel blijven hangen als hij zodanig verlicht is dat de kleuren duidelijk te zien zijn.

De vlag halfstok
Als de vlag halfstok moet hangen, wordt de vlag eerst vol gehesen. Daarna wordt de vlag langzaam en statig neergehaald, totdat het midden van de vlag op de helft van de normale hoogte is gekomen. Hierna wordt de vlaggenlijn vastgebonden. De vlag wordt niet opgebonden. Bij het neerhalen van een halfstok gehesen vlag wordt deze eerst langzaam en statig vol gehesen en vervolgens op dezelfde wijze neergehaald.

Oranje wimpel en bijzondere gebeurtenissen
Op Koninginnedag en op verjaardagen van leden van het Koninklijk Huis wordt de vlag met een oranje wimpel gehesen. Bij alle andere gelegenheden wordt er zonder oranje wimpel gevlagd. Bij bijzondere gebeurtenissen in de Koninklijke Familie (zoals geboorte, huwelijk, overlijden), kan er een speciale vlaginstructie afgekondigd worden. Tijdens officiële bezoeken van buitenlandse staatshoofden wordt alleen gevlagd in de plaatsen die worden bezocht.

Lees het hele artikel op

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Flag protocol by Jan Jaap van Weering (in Dutch):

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The Protocol of Flags

Published 30 August 2010
International Customs
By John Robertson, Tutor, The English Manner

Flags: we raise them in pride and celebration, lower them in sadness and to commemorate death, burn or destroy them in anger and protest. There is great emotion associated with this one symbol as very aptly noted by the Chief Protocol Officer for Toronto, Canada.

For several months now, my colleague William Hanson has been urging me to write something for the blog on the subject of flags. On the face of it, this was a simple request and should not have presented any difficulties as I can fairly easily recite the generally accepted guidelines for displaying flags and have often given advice in the matter (sometimes by invitation, other times not).

However, I felt that our readers expected more than mere rote and I wanted a different slant and in the process, inadvertently opened a can of worms (a modern metaphorical extension of Pandora’s Box). My research (if that is not too grand a term) included personal observation and study on three continents and many countries and eventually led to a meeting with the Lead Ceremonials Officer for the US State Department. The USA is the only country that has statute law dealing with flying or displaying its national flag (Title 36, Chapter 1).

Read the rest @ The Protocol of Flags

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Flag rules and regulations (USA)

Flag Code Violations in the News Hide Section

Also visit the American Flag Wall of Shame and the Flag in the News

1. When the flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.

2. The flag of the United States of America, when it is displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, should be on the right, the flag’s own right [that means the viewer’s left –Webmaster], and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.

3. The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. By “half-staff” is meant lowering the flag to one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff. Crepe streamers may be affixed to spear heads or flagstaffs in a parade only by order of the President of the United States.

4. When flags of States, cities, or localities, or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States, the latter should always be at the peak. When the flags are flown from adjacent staffs, the flag of the United States should be hoisted first and lowered last. No such flag or pennant may be placed above the flag of the United States or to the right of the flag of the United States (the viewer’s left). When the flag is half-masted, both flags are half-masted, with the US flag at the mid-point and the other flag below.

5. When the flag is suspended over a sidewalk from a rope extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the flag should be hoisted out, union first, from the building.

6. When the flag of the United States is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of a building, the union of the flag should be placed at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half-staff.

7. When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.

8. When the flag is displayed in a manner other than by being flown from a staff, it should be displayed flat, whether indoors or out. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag’s own right, that is, to the observer’s left. When displayed in a window it should be displayed in the same way, that is with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street. When festoons, rosettes or drapings are desired, bunting of blue, white and red should be used, but never the flag.

9. That the flag, when carried in a procession with another flag, or flags, should be either on the marching right; that is, the flag’s own right, or, if there is a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.

10. The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.

11. When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height. The flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace. The order of precedence for flags generally is National flags (US first, then others in alphabetical order in English), State (host state first, then others in the order of admission) and territories (Washington DC, Puerto Rico, etc.), Military (Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard), then other. Read more.

12. When displayed from a staff in a church or public auditorium on or off a podium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the clergyman’s or speaker’s right as he faces the audience. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the clergyman or speaker (to the right of the audience). Please note that the old guidelines differed from this updated and simplified one.

13. When the flag is displayed on a car, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.

14. When hung in a window, place the blue union in the upper left, as viewed from the street.

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American Flag Protocol: Stars and Stripes Forever

Source: The Huffington Post

When George Washington was just sixteen years old, he compiled 110 rules on manners that were later published in a book entitled Rules of Civility & Decent Behavior In Company and Conversation. If they were good enough for young George, they’re good enough for us.

Some 250 years later, our country came under attack. Does anyone look at the American flag in the same way since September 11? Now, it’s even more important not to take the stars and stripes for granted. The Rule Code for Flags states “More than simply a piece of fabric, a national flag represents the nation as a whole, and is an important symbol of national identity.” Old Glory lines our streets on Veterans Day, the Fourth of July, and Memorial Day, but just how many of us really understand correct flag protocol?

Displaying the Flag Outside

The American flag should be displayed between sunrise and sunset. If flown after dark, it must be illuminated.
The flag should be raised briskly and lowered slowly, and we should salute the flag during both occasions. Members of the military and veterans should give a military salute; all others salute by placing their right hand over their heart.
When carried in a procession, the flag should be to the right of the marchers.
When more than one flag is displayed from the same flagpole, the flag of the United States must always be on top.
Displaying the Flag Inside

When it’s displayed alone, the American flag should be positioned to the right of the speaker’s podium or entrance.
When it’s on display with flags of other nations, the American flag should be to the right and the other flags to the left. When it’s on display with flags of states or other organizations, the flag should be at the center and the highest point.
When the staff of another flag crosses that of the United States, the flag of the United States is placed on the right with its staff in front of the other flag.

Read the rest of the article @

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