Working with different cultures

Working in different countries and with people from different cultures is a great way to learn about your beliefs, your shortcomings and especially about your ego.

It’s like a mind game: working out how to get the best from your team when they come from China, Japan, South Africa, Sweden, England, Scotland, Sri Lanka, India, the Philippines or Malaysia!

The Japanese style is perhaps the best that I prefer for getting high volume of work done in a very short period of time – they just know how to work together.  The Dutch are similar, but have more connection to the social component of their lives.

Having done business with South Africans I can appreciate the influences of English, Dutch – and the local environment – to give that particularly effective, selective approach to hard work: choose carefully, and dig in hard once the choice has been made.  This is very similar to Australia in fact, and with each having similar cultural and environmental heritage it explains a lot: see if you can spot the differences between the Springboks supporters and the Wallabies…

When I came across the Ingelhart Values Map it helped a lot in my thoughts in this area: collaboration between cultures.  The map has been created by the World Values Survey.

Read more about the World Value Survey and you’ll learn that it is estimated that the map covers perhaps 70% of influences of a culture.  The map looks at Traditional (or religious) values versus secular rational values, together with survival and self expression desires of a culture.

For example, take the Indian culture: over 1 billion people.  They have a very strong follower trait.  From the map India is more traditionalist and survival focused.  This is reflected in higher birth rates, and can be seen in all the great Indian cities like Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata where the infrastructure is pretty much as left in place by the British in 1948, just now it is in much poorer condition.

When comparing India with Australia, the similarity in strength placed on traditional values would support the notion of high popularity in each country for the very traditional game of cricket?


Profile of Jeremiah Josey

Blog of Jeremiah Josey


2 thoughts on “Working with different cultures

    • Thanks for the kind words Gertha! Yeah, there sure is a heap of information out there! I find the best way to approach it is let it come to you. Then amazing stuff comes your way.

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