Children Psychology Development Parenting Culture Individualism Collectivism Personality Indulgences Global Perspectives

Where You Are Born Influences the Person You Become

As early as the fifth century, the Greek philosopher Thucydides contrasted the self-control and stoicism of Spartans with the more indulgent and free-thinking citizens of Athens. Today, unique behaviors and characteristics seem ingrained in certain cultures. Italians wildly gesticulate when they talk. Dutch children are notably easygoing and less fussy. Russians rarely smile in public. As developmental psychologists, we’re fascinated …

male Chinese student

How Culture Considerably Influences Children’s Development

From educational toys to governmental guidelines and detailed nursery progress reports, there are lots of resources available to help parents track and facilitate their children’s development. But while there are tricks we can use to teach children to talk, count, draw or respect others, a surprisingly big part of how they develop is determined by the culture they grow up …

Holistic thinking, common in Japan, leads to a certain way of memorizing

Knowledge about Different Cultures is Shaking the Foundations of Psychology

The academic discipline of psychology was developed largely in North America and Europe. Some would argue it’s been remarkably successful in understanding what drives human behavior and mental processes, which have long been thought to be universal. But in recent decades some researchers have started questioning this approach, arguing that many psychological phenomena are shaped by the culture we live …

building trust

Are some cultures really less trusting than others?

Nobel laureate Kenneth Arrow once described trust as a “lubricant of a social system”. Economic exchange, in particular, is virtually impossible without at least some level of trust. While markets, shops and online traders attempt to reduce uncertainty through customer reviews or free returns policies, consumers have to decide for themselves whether to trust unknown trading partners calling themselves obscure …

cultural assessment

The Culture Assessments You Need to Master Global Business in 2018

You Can’t Manage What You Don’t Measure Most of you have probably heard this axiom before. It is attributed to leadership and management thought leader Peter Drucker who argues that without collecting and analyzing data we have no way of tracking whether and how we are reaching our goals. If your goal this year (notice that we’re not talking about …

Culture is not shocking – unless you want it to be

Are new encounters really shocking – or simply unfamiliar? When preparing people for life and work abroad cultural trainers often address the issue of culture shock. Sometimes this may sound like there will be a wave of negative experiences and emotions crashing on the shores of expat existence. Let’s set the record straight on this: The idea of a shock isn’t …

First talk and then perhaps drink to connect across differences

Yes, the Heineken commercial is genius. How can we connect across differences, if we allow our differences to define us? In light of the recent political and societal trends towards even more polarization and populism this is a fair question to ask. In case you haven’t seen it yet, the Dutch brewing company Heineken released an image film in April 2017 which hit …

Learn from U.S. Commercial Service & The Culture Mastery about business in Latin America

Helping U.S.-based businesses become more successful when working with Mexico and Colombia With Latin America as the closest and one of the largest markets for U.S. business, companies that want to succeed have to overcome challenges and meet opportunities of intercultural communication with their Latin American counterparts. The U.S. Commercial Service is partnering with The Culture Mastery for a workshop which will provide …

When moving within the U.S. feels like going from Morocco to Finland [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Melissa Hahn shares how the question of identity can shape a relationship between partners from different cultures. She also describes how the geographical distance within one country can equal that of the opposite ends of a continent. Born and raised in Arizona, Melissa has had many opportunities to travel and live abroad and to experience other cultures. However, the first time …

The secret of mastering a mixed-culture marriage [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Carmen Ring explains why tolerance will only get you through the first year of an intercultural relationship Born in Ploiești, Romania – at a time when the Iron Curtain was still closed and her country was governed under the dictatorship rule of Nicolae Ceaușescu – Carmen now lives in New York State with her American husband and their toddler son. …

A Sci-Fi Lesson for Real-Life Cultural Understanding

Note: This article contains spoilers for the movie Arrival. Read at your own discretion.   How a Hollywood movie can help interculturalists teach connection One of the best science-fiction movies of the past decade has a beautiful lesson for people who strive to better communicate across linguistic and cultural borders. While the central theme of Arrival ostensibly is that of the communication challenge …

“Chinese bastards”: What we can learn from Daimler’s cross-cultural incident

When emotions hit a high, intelligence drops to a low Whether we like it or not: Sometimes people lose their temper and act out against others. And it is usually not a pretty picture. When this happens to company leaders on foreign assignment it can create a ripple effect with far greater reach than the untamed emotional release itself. In 2016 a cross-cultural incident …

How to become a cultural chameleon [The Culture Guy Podcast]

On this episode Pellegrino Riccardi explains how he reconciles his three cultural backgrounds Born in the UK to parents who came from Avellino in Southern Italy, and raised in a bicultural family in Bath – an English city which first experienced visitors from ancient Rome as early as AD 60 – Pellegrino now lives in Norway with his Norwegian wife …

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Meet your global growth goals with BANK

Global Excellence – Affordable Results – Trusted Methodology – Harmonious Connection Does your organization consistently meet its global growth goals? Are you finding that selling and marketing to clients and prospects from outside your country is more challenging than in your home market? With the BANK personality training system this challenge will soon be a thing of the past. We are …

Cosmopolitans, let’s keep reaching out! [The Culture Guy Podcast]

The Culture Guy pontificates about cosmopolitans, the signs of the times, and how four agreements will help you stand for who you are. We have been seeing a rise of nationalist, protectionist, or xenophobic tendencies across the world. The Culture Guy Podcast takes a look at the dilemma this creates for some of us. For those who live and work across cultural …

Why cultural competence is one of seven success factors for ‘glocal’ business

Recently on this blog you found our Table of Elements for Global Business Readiness. It has become quite popular among our clients. And it’s exciting to see that EDGE Business Magazine published a modified version in its January 2017 issue. In their Skill Sets column Christian Höferle explains the importance of cultural competence for sustainable growth for ‘glocal’ businesses. Cultural Competence a KeyGrowth Factor …

What executives, doctors, lawyers, students, teachers, baristas, and goat farmers have in common [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Getting outside of your comfort zone is easier with the tips in Andy Molinsky’s new book, Reach Exactly a year after he first appeared as a guest on The Culture Guy Podcast, Andy Molinsky is back. In this first episode of 2017 Andy talks about his latest book, Reach: A New Strategy to help You Step Outside Your Comfort Zone. Often, …

How lawyers can cross cultures with ease [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Why international attorneys need to learn about intercultural communication Jeri Weber is an attorney-at-law and an intercultural consultant for legal professionals. She was born and raised in the U.S. Midwest, spent time in Asia as an exchange student and has lived and worked in China, Indonesia, the Netherlands, Belgium, and Germany. On this episode Jeri highlights the fact that most …

Why this NRI thinks “I will” beats IQ [The Culture Guy Podcast]

Why Mitch Patel thinks skills can be taught and not attitude Mitul “Mitch” Patel is the founder and CEO of Vision Hospitality Group, Inc., which will celebrate its 20th anniversary next year. Mitch is the son of immigrants from India – his father came to California from a village in Gujarat with $8 in his pocket. Today Mitch leads an …

Cultural work in a post-truth, narcissistic world

This November I attended a SIETAR meeting for the first time. Not sure why it took me so long to engage with intercultural professionals and educators at this level. I certainly recommend you don’t wait as long as I did. The gathering I attended was the annual conference of SIETAR USA in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The convention officially started on the …