Ever wonder about the psychology of the Russian people?
Let’s look at where they come from.
What are some headlines about Russia as a country? (Just a few, because there are many):
- Largest landmass on earth, and by population density, one of the least populated – only 8 people per square kilometer. Singapore has over 7,500 people per square kilometer.
- With these large unpopulated spaces very generous reserves of gold, oil, coal, gas, iron, nickel, tungsten and so on, where most other countries have piles of dirt.
- A great agricultural base – both in land and farming techniques – for production of organic food 😀
So lots of space for people, lots of space for food for the people and lots of resources for the people to work with.
And what about the people? (Also just a few points, because there are many):
- Never conquered in over 1,000 years, with a contiguous culture throughout that time, layered with incredible fortitude built from a primarily serfdom society.
- A recent memory war that took away 26,500,000 people concurrent with an equally recent memory regime that removed another 20,000,000 souls from the earth. Remember that present day Russian population is only 143,000,000.
- Within the most recent generation an entire society literally thrown onto the street as they moved from one economic system and were thrust into another.
And what is the net result. In one word: Survivors – practical, pragmatic survivors. With a whole lot of resources to apply themselves to.
One can see this in this Inglehart Value Map below. There’s Russia: high on the upper left: High Survival values and high in Secular-Rational values: “what will it/you/they do for me now, today, not tomorrow or after?”
Having a very high “Secular-Rational Value” means the people are very practical, very pragmatic. They are not prone to superstition (or faith without action), though many have deep devout faiths. Compare this to the USA, where a call to align with “traditional values” by any politician, Republican or Democratic – calling for God, or labour or liberalist idealism – will be swept into power with a rambunctious swearing of allegiances and oaths to serve – and die for no reason in strange far off lands – for God and country. In Russia it’s simple: “show me”.
Considering the history of the Russian people, on Survival Values they rank very high also. This makes for tenacity, perseverance, industriousness. No room for BS please.
Lots of good potential in this combination. Driven, dedicated, results focused. A little bit of entrepreneurial training and away they will go.
Have you ever heard of Maslow and the “Hierarchy of Needs”. That helps explain what is behind the Values Map. The idea is as you sort out your base, you can rise up the pyramid to, eventually, self actualisation.
That’s a country for you – on the launch pad.