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Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own. Renowned expert Erin Meyer is your guide through this subtle, sometimes treacherous terrain where people from starkly different backgrounds are expected to work harm Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own. Renowned expert Erin Meyer is your guide through this subtle, sometimes treacherous terrain where people from starkly different backgrounds are expected to work harmoniously together. When you have Americans who precede anything negative with three nice comments; French, Dutch, Israelis, and Germans who get straight to the point (“your presentation was simply awful”); Latin Americans and Asians who are steeped in hierarchy; Scandinavians who think the best boss is just one of the crowd—the result can be, well, sometimes interesting, even funny, but often disastrous. Even with English as a global language, it’s easy to fall into cultural traps that endanger careers and sink deals when, say, a Brazilian manager tries to fathom how his Chinese suppliers really get things done, or an American team leader tries to get a handle on the intra-team dynamics between his Russian and Indian team members. In The Culture Map, Erin Meyer provides a field-tested model for decoding how cultural differences impact international business. She combines a smart analytical framework with practical, actionable advice for succeeding in a global world.


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Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own. Renowned expert Erin Meyer is your guide through this subtle, sometimes treacherous terrain where people from starkly different backgrounds are expected to work harm Whether you work in a home office or abroad, business success in our ever more globalized and virtual world requires the skills to navigate through cultural differences and decode cultures foreign to your own. Renowned expert Erin Meyer is your guide through this subtle, sometimes treacherous terrain where people from starkly different backgrounds are expected to work harmoniously together. When you have Americans who precede anything negative with three nice comments; French, Dutch, Israelis, and Germans who get straight to the point (“your presentation was simply awful”); Latin Americans and Asians who are steeped in hierarchy; Scandinavians who think the best boss is just one of the crowd—the result can be, well, sometimes interesting, even funny, but often disastrous. Even with English as a global language, it’s easy to fall into cultural traps that endanger careers and sink deals when, say, a Brazilian manager tries to fathom how his Chinese suppliers really get things done, or an American team leader tries to get a handle on the intra-team dynamics between his Russian and Indian team members. In The Culture Map, Erin Meyer provides a field-tested model for decoding how cultural differences impact international business. She combines a smart analytical framework with practical, actionable advice for succeeding in a global world.

30 review for The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lori

    A practical guide for navigating cultural complexity while conducting global business. Interesting examples of everyday failures to communicate and work around solutions. Implements personal changes sounds like a challenge, but that is the way things are. While strong cultural expression makes for good stories, it can impede effective communication with people from different traditions. Of course, downgraders are used in every world culture, but some cultures use them more than others. The Briti A practical guide for navigating cultural complexity while conducting global business. Interesting examples of everyday failures to communicate and work around solutions. Implements personal changes sounds like a challenge, but that is the way things are. While strong cultural expression makes for good stories, it can impede effective communication with people from different traditions. Of course, downgraders are used in every world culture, but some cultures use them more than others. The British are masters of the art, with the result that their communications often leave the rest of us quite bewildered. Take the announcement made by British Airways pilot Eric Moody in 1982, after flying through a cloud of volcanic ash over Indonesia: “Good evening again, ladies and gentlemen. This is Captain Eric Moody here. We have a small problem in that all four engines have failed. We’re doing our utmost to get them going, and I trust you’re not in too much distress, and would the chief steward please come to the flight deck?” Fortunately, the plane was able to glide far enough to exit the ash cloud, and the engines were restarted, allowing the aircraft to land safely at the Halim Perdanakusuma Airport in Jakarta with no casualties. Moody’s recorded announcement has since been widely hailed as a classic example of understatement. The “Anglo-Dutch Translation Guide” (Figure 2.1), which has been anonymously circulating in various versions on the Internet, amusingly illustrates how the British use downgraders and the resulting confusion this can create among listeners from another culture (in this case, the Dutch). Awareness should be a step in the right direction.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Adina

    This book can be an excellent tool for any person that works or even just interacts with different cultures. The author has an extensive experience as a cultural trainer and she shares interesting and educational events from her many years working with different people from all over the world. The focus is on European countries (UK, France, Scandinavia, Russia, Germany), USA and Asia (Japan, India, China, South Korea) and South America (Brazil, Colombia, Mexico) and Oceania. Africa is not covered This book can be an excellent tool for any person that works or even just interacts with different cultures. The author has an extensive experience as a cultural trainer and she shares interesting and educational events from her many years working with different people from all over the world. The focus is on European countries (UK, France, Scandinavia, Russia, Germany), USA and Asia (Japan, India, China, South Korea) and South America (Brazil, Colombia, Mexico) and Oceania. Africa is not covered, probably because of her lack of experience on that continent. Each chapters covers a specific aspect of the business interaction: Communication, persuasion, leadership, performance evaluation and negative feedback, decision making, trust, disagreement and scheduling. We are given plenty of example to illustrate cultural misunderstandings and ways to deal with them. Moreover, in each chapter there is a figure who show on a line, from one extreme to other, where each main country stands from a variable point of view. For example, in terms of communication there are two extremes: low-context cultures and High Context ones. In low-context countries such as the US, Australia, people usually say what they think whereas in high-context ones, China and Japan, people tend to only suggest between the lines the real meaning of what they are saying. As I work almost exclusively with clients from outside Europe, the differences between what we consider normal business behavior and theirs are quite significant. I recognized myself in many of the situations presented in the book and maybe I would have dealt better with some problems if I had read this book in advance. I highly recommend this book, I find it extremely useful and enjoyable to consult from time to time.

  3. 4 out of 5

    HBalikov

    There is a minefield out there for anyone who steps from their own familiar territory into foreign turf. The consequences might only be embarrassment or they could be a lost client or you might never know what you did or did not do. “Cultural patterns of behavior and belief frequently impact our perceptions (what we see), cognitions (what we think), and actions (what we do).” If Meyer’s goal is “to help you improve your ability to decode these three facets of culture and to enhance your effective There is a minefield out there for anyone who steps from their own familiar territory into foreign turf. The consequences might only be embarrassment or they could be a lost client or you might never know what you did or did not do. “Cultural patterns of behavior and belief frequently impact our perceptions (what we see), cognitions (what we think), and actions (what we do).” If Meyer’s goal is “to help you improve your ability to decode these three facets of culture and to enhance your effectiveness in dealing with them”, the book definitely falls a bit short. However, the book, and Meyer’s methodology is a great success at raising the reader’s level of consciousness, and thus better able to perceive where an issue may arise. Meyers sees “eight scales” as defining any specific culture’s dimensions: - Communicating: “low-context vs. high context” - Evaluating: “direct negative feedback vs. indirect negative feedback” - Persuading: “principles-first vs. applications first” - Leading: “egalitarian vs. hierarchical” - Deciding: “consensual vs. top-down” - Trusting: “task-based vs. relationship-based” - Disagreeing: “confrontational vs. avoids confrontation” - Scheduling: “linear-time vs. flexible-time” Aside from the anthropological-speak, the distinctions are easy to perceive. But are they always evident? Are they useful? Fortunately, if you are like me, you don’t have to answer the questions. Just go for the gestalt. Meyer provides anecdotes. (In fact, one could argue that the book is not much more than a collection of anecdotes.) - Read the anecdote. - Ask yourself what you would do. - Try to recall if you have ever been in a similar situation. - Repeat. For me that was a methodology that got me out the other side feeling that I had learned something of value and had also preserved most of my self-esteem. I will save those eight “scales” for another day.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Tarek Amr

    Being a person who is born and raised in Egypt, then moved to work in the Netherlands a couple of years ago, this book is an eyeopener for me regarding cultural differences I used to notice but wasn't able to articulate very well. Erin Meyer's books focuses on 8 aspects where cultures differ; how are people from different cultures communicate, evaluate, persuade, lead, decide, trust, disagree and schedule. The author maps culture differences onto those 8 scales, and funny enough, the Middle East Being a person who is born and raised in Egypt, then moved to work in the Netherlands a couple of years ago, this book is an eyeopener for me regarding cultural differences I used to notice but wasn't able to articulate very well. Erin Meyer's books focuses on 8 aspects where cultures differ; how are people from different cultures communicate, evaluate, persuade, lead, decide, trust, disagree and schedule. The author maps culture differences onto those 8 scales, and funny enough, the Middle East and the Netherlands fall almost always on the two opposite ends of each scale. When it comes to communication, the scale goes between low context vs hight context cultures. Anglophones and Dutch/Germans are on one end, while Japanese are on the other end. Arabs and Indians slightly lower context than Japanese, and French among other Latin cultures are in the middle. High context read between the lines, looks for layers and hidden meanings. They use irony and don't need to explicitly say "just kidding" after joking. Brits are higher context compared to Americans, thus the latter seldom get the former's humour. Low context cultures tend to have broader vocabulary in their languages. And, I understand, high context ones use metaphors more. Low context culture tend to have stuff written while high context tend to express things verbally. Thinking of Egyptian Arabic, we have just one word for leg and foot; however we have different word for each in traditional Arabic, and maybe we move to a slightly lower context when we write, as we write in traditional Arabic most of the time. When evaluation each other, Dutch are direct and low context, Americans/Brits are indirect and while still having low context. Israelis and Russians direct and high context. Arabs indirect and high context. The French stress on negative feedback and give positive feedback subtly, while Americans are just the opposite. I wouldn't go on and summarise all 8 aspects, of course. I recommend you read the book, but let me mention some things I notices. I used to think Germans and Dutch should be very similar in everything, especially after seeing them showing close to each other on many scales, then later on, I discovered that when it comes to leadership, the Dutch are more egalitarian and the Germans and hierarchal. When I stumbled upon the term, egalitarian, I didn't know exactly its meaning, but since I know what the national motto of France (liberté, égalité, fraternité) means, I could easily deduct its meaning in English, then came the irony that the French are more hierarchal than egalitarian. Imagine being in a queue, and the person in front of you is asking a teller a question that sparks a 30 minutes discussion, while you just have a 2 seconds question, should I go from this gate or that one. In Egypt, it is understandable that you can interrupt their discussion to ask your question, and when I came to Europe, one of the shocking moments to me was that in linear-time cultures, that's a big no no! Similar to my initial perception of German and Dutch cultures, I also thought Israelis would be very similar to Arabs, in the end of the day, they all are Middle-Easterns, till I read that people Israel, Germany, France and the Netherlands are confrontational; while Japan, China, Saudi Arabia, Ghana and Peru avoid confrontation. Arabs and Israelis are kinda similar on 50% of the scales here, and dissimilar on the other 50%. Societies may base their trust on relations, or be task-oriented. Societies with relationship-oriented business attitude are most likely ones with weak legal systems, where relationships provide better safety nets than contracts. In the end, I am not a big fan of the post modernist approach of seeing all cultures are equal, and considering any criticism to be a form of racism. I see empirical evidences that some cultures are more economically successful that the others, and I think it is good for individuals and societies to learn about those differences and learn to adapt to what is best.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Hyperion

    The book was OK. It offers a good overview of differences between cultures. Sometimes we may assume that 2 cultures are similar, but in the end there is a possibility of conflict, because they have different "mentality" on a certain point (trust or time perception, for instance). But Erin often limits herself to personal stories and doesn't cite almost any researcher or study. Where did she take her scales from? What indicators did she use? Hunch? Gut feeling? Statistical analysis? Sometimes sto The book was OK. It offers a good overview of differences between cultures. Sometimes we may assume that 2 cultures are similar, but in the end there is a possibility of conflict, because they have different "mentality" on a certain point (trust or time perception, for instance). But Erin often limits herself to personal stories and doesn't cite almost any researcher or study. Where did she take her scales from? What indicators did she use? Hunch? Gut feeling? Statistical analysis? Sometimes stories end at the most interesting point, do not specify essential details, and serve just to act as a "proof" for the previous idea to give it credibility that it was lacking. "The Culture Map" is a collection of interesting points on different cultures, but I wouldn't say that it is a best cross-cultural book out there. If you want fundamental research - Hofstede. If you want to work with a particular nation, try looking precisely at books relevant to that nation. Nevertheless, this book is an interesting introduction to cross-cultural management so if you are a novice in the field it might interest you.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Camie

    I picked up this book at Schiphol airport while traveling in Holland, on a vacation that included London, Germany, and a cruise of the Baltic Sea to Russia, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, and Denmark. It was highlighted as a " must read" and though it is a book written about the complexity of people from different cultures working together in the business world, I found it a very interesting read which maps out the general social customs of people from different countries. I kept thinking of my broth I picked up this book at Schiphol airport while traveling in Holland, on a vacation that included London, Germany, and a cruise of the Baltic Sea to Russia, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, and Denmark. It was highlighted as a " must read" and though it is a book written about the complexity of people from different cultures working together in the business world, I found it a very interesting read which maps out the general social customs of people from different countries. I kept thinking of my brother-in -law who is Dutch but working in Shanghai, China as these two countries are almost diametrically opposite in all 8 mapped areas the book discusses in the way the people communicate, react to authority, and approach business situations. 4.5 stars for me, even though I'm a very non-business oriented person these days.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Meh. It started off really good but the generalisations got annoying towards the end.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Wen

    When you offer a drink to a guest, and she says “no, thank you”. Would she be expecting you to ask her again or she really meant what she said? The answer depends on if she’s from a “high-context” culture like China or a “low-context” culture like America. Erin Meyer used many enlightening real-life examples like this to illustrate the cultural differences around the world. I particularly like Erin Meyer’s approach of using 8 self-standing yet interconnected scales, communicating, evaluating, pers When you offer a drink to a guest, and she says “no, thank you”. Would she be expecting you to ask her again or she really meant what she said? The answer depends on if she’s from a “high-context” culture like China or a “low-context” culture like America. Erin Meyer used many enlightening real-life examples like this to illustrate the cultural differences around the world. I particularly like Erin Meyer’s approach of using 8 self-standing yet interconnected scales, communicating, evaluating, persuading, leading, deciding, trusting, disagreeing, and scheduling, to map cultural differences. She position each country on the scales for visual comparison. This systematic method and the abundant real-life examples together made the book very easy to follow. The book mainly targets business managers leading multi-cultural teams. I think some of the examples and conclusions are also enlightening to an everyday reader enjoying international travel and curious about different cultures. Being an immigrant from China who lives and works in the U.S, I experienced a number of aha moments in the book. Remember when my very first U.S boss told someone I was her life saver after I finished , to myself, a trivial task, I felt being put on the spot. People in America do ten to over-use words like “excellent” and “thrilled” (chapter 2), which strikes people from some other cultures as fake and insincere. Indeed It took me a while to recalibrate and adapt., Luckily for me, Americans and Chinese are both confrontation-averse chapter 7). Putting accounting standard in the cultural context as Meyer described in chapter 3 Why versus How, I came to a realization why IFRS is principle-based, and U.S GAAP is rule/application-based. That said, I had my reservations in seeing America and China as single cultures. Meyer did include some qualifiers regarding to this point, however with only moderate conviction. For example, she pegged American leadership approach as egalitarian (chapter 4) , but to me the financial and public sectors are leaning more toward hierarchical. As Chinese major cities increasingly westernized, linear time (chapter 8) has become more of a norm in both corporate and social settings. There are plenty of funny moments; I found myself chuckling from time to time. Overall a wonderful read; the best culture self-help book I have read so far.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jake Goretzki

    This one came heavy with praise from various colleagues. Strong concept, but profoundly tedious and slow-going in its execution. As per the form with very many business books (this happens nearly every time), it's making points that could easily be condensed into a short essay. Somewhere in there, there are a handful of useful dimensions to think about (e.g. high context vs low context communication). But successive dimensions feel narrower and narrower - to the extent where I'm not sure 'giving This one came heavy with praise from various colleagues. Strong concept, but profoundly tedious and slow-going in its execution. As per the form with very many business books (this happens nearly every time), it's making points that could easily be condensed into a short essay. Somewhere in there, there are a handful of useful dimensions to think about (e.g. high context vs low context communication). But successive dimensions feel narrower and narrower - to the extent where I'm not sure 'giving negative feedback' deserves its own axis. As with a lot of it, you could probably make some more universal, multi-behavioural generalisations (I'd probably start by looking again at Hofstede actually). What I found most grinding about it though was the high corporate tone of it all, and the heavy reliance on dreary anecdote populated by dreary business lounge dullards - being, no doubt, ultimately pitched at Americans, who buy 97% of the world's business books. Every faithfully named and job-titled character is slightly wet behind the ears and in for a big surprise that the half self-aware reader has seen a mile off. And then you start to notice the writer's tic of picking out one element of an appearance ('a lady with a neat bob', 'with smiley eyes', 'with snowy white hair'). At intervals I wanted to yell "Look, sod Geoff Tipple. Just sum the point you're making up in two lines". And as with many a business book too, we're never far away from a pitch for consultancy work or conference speech opportunities. Thus: 'While providing leading edge consultancy for a lot of money at a range of major businesses across Western Europe, I was approached recently by Jens Kugelschreiber, a London-based VP from Amsterdam who was working with a team across Indonesia and Legoland. Kugelschreiber, who sported a jet black moustache, explained that he had been experiencing tensions with Chinese colleagues after exposing his private parts during meetings. 'I don't understand it. I do this all the time at HQ'. I told him to read my book, and stop exposing his private parts during meetings. 'It worked! Now I only expose them to Germans', said Jens. Lesson: don't expose your private parts during meetings in China. And maybe everywhere else. Actually, just don't be a prick'.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Asif

    Candidate for the best book I have read in 2016 unless another one can beat it. The author made is fun to read with great examples that I could easily relate to.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Maciej Kuczyński

    Cool, cool. Now I just need to become a manager of an international team in order to see if all this is true. :D

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cic il ciclista stanco

    Well, I would rate this book 4 stars, but it was the first time I read something about trying to "measure" differences among different cultures and I found it fascinating and rather helpful for anyone who has to deal with people from all around the world. Well, I would rate this book 4 stars, but it was the first time I read something about trying to "measure" differences among different cultures and I found it fascinating and rather helpful for anyone who has to deal with people from all around the world.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Tom Koolen

    A practical and comprehensive guide to how different cultures should be approached regarding business relations, but it can also be used outside of that. If you've read multiple books about cultural differences already, some parts might already be known. However, the way all the information is combined makes it really good. The quote that really fits (and which is used several times in the book) is "once you identify your sickness you are halfway cured". This book helps you identify the gaps bet A practical and comprehensive guide to how different cultures should be approached regarding business relations, but it can also be used outside of that. If you've read multiple books about cultural differences already, some parts might already be known. However, the way all the information is combined makes it really good. The quote that really fits (and which is used several times in the book) is "once you identify your sickness you are halfway cured". This book helps you identify the gaps between cultures and brings practical examples of how to overcome them.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Philippe Le Grand

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I imagine many readers have a basic understanding of cultural behaviours and differences. I also imagine that many think, due to their understanding, they are able to grasp its impact and find solutions. However, we forget our own cultural behaviour and its impact on others across different cultures. Erin Meyer helps not only to understand other cultural behaviours but also to place yourself on a cultural map. With it, the reader gains insights on coping better and quicker with cultural differenc I imagine many readers have a basic understanding of cultural behaviours and differences. I also imagine that many think, due to their understanding, they are able to grasp its impact and find solutions. However, we forget our own cultural behaviour and its impact on others across different cultures. Erin Meyer helps not only to understand other cultural behaviours but also to place yourself on a cultural map. With it, the reader gains insights on coping better and quicker with cultural differences. Erin Meyer carefully picks up the reader at the very point the reader starts to understand the own impact with and within cultural interactions. Erin Meyer combines theory with personal experiences and helps the reader to translate the academic content quickly and comprehensibly. Clearly arranged around 8 core topics, the complexity of the cultural differences is shown and possible ways of dealing with them proposed. Each page is entertaining and educational at the same time. Erin Meyer helped me understand cultural diversity as much as she helped me to understand my very own cultural background and acting within its boundaries given by it. It opens a door to new possibilties.

  15. 4 out of 5

    All My Friends Are Fictional

    A book full of oversimplifications, generalisations and self-contradiction. Plus many of the examples felt simply made up. Although it had one or two good ideas thrown in there, I am honestly not sure if this book can hardly help anyone. I guess if one has never heard words "culture" or "team" before? A book full of oversimplifications, generalisations and self-contradiction. Plus many of the examples felt simply made up. Although it had one or two good ideas thrown in there, I am honestly not sure if this book can hardly help anyone. I guess if one has never heard words "culture" or "team" before?

  16. 5 out of 5

    Grace

    This should be mandatory reading for all ex-pats and folks working at multicultural/international companies. It's given me so much more language for what I've experienced in Rwanda, whose culture is nearly the exact opposite that in America. I'm really looking forward to employing Meyer's strategies in my new and upcoming professional experience, with colleagues and students alike. This should be mandatory reading for all ex-pats and folks working at multicultural/international companies. It's given me so much more language for what I've experienced in Rwanda, whose culture is nearly the exact opposite that in America. I'm really looking forward to employing Meyer's strategies in my new and upcoming professional experience, with colleagues and students alike.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Aayla

    I found this book to be fascinating, enlightening, important, and highly relevant. Erin Meyer talks about culture in a way that is respectful and also relative, so that we can understand cultural differences by contrast and comparison. Even though this book is designed to help business-people, I would argue that it is relevant and useful to all people. Everyone could benefit from reading it. Even if you don't agree with everything she has to say (though I personally can't say that I found her to b I found this book to be fascinating, enlightening, important, and highly relevant. Erin Meyer talks about culture in a way that is respectful and also relative, so that we can understand cultural differences by contrast and comparison. Even though this book is designed to help business-people, I would argue that it is relevant and useful to all people. Everyone could benefit from reading it. Even if you don't agree with everything she has to say (though I personally can't say that I found her to be wrong), she brings up many great points that will probably get you thinking, and that's an important start.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Csilla

    "The Culture Map" is a captivating read for someone who interacts with people from different countries. It describes a practical framework with 8 scales to understand the differences and similarities in the ways people from different cultures express emotions, schedule their time, lead, persuade, choose words they use when they communicate, give feedback or take decisions. For each scale the differences are explained by linking the chosen way to behave to aspects from the cultures' history and p "The Culture Map" is a captivating read for someone who interacts with people from different countries. It describes a practical framework with 8 scales to understand the differences and similarities in the ways people from different cultures express emotions, schedule their time, lead, persuade, choose words they use when they communicate, give feedback or take decisions. For each scale the differences are explained by linking the chosen way to behave to aspects from the cultures' history and philosophy. The book added new dimensions to my knowledge and reading it helped me connect many dots.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Andrea Grandi

    Possibly the worst book I've ever read. It's a huge collection of biases for all the possible countries and cultures. The whole book is structured with examples like: if you are working with Chinese people, you should take this approach, instead if your team is composed by German people you should do this etc.... While I can't possibily verify all the claimings for every culture mentioned (since there are no references about all these claiming. No studies mentioned. Nothing. All based on author ow Possibly the worst book I've ever read. It's a huge collection of biases for all the possible countries and cultures. The whole book is structured with examples like: if you are working with Chinese people, you should take this approach, instead if your team is composed by German people you should do this etc.... While I can't possibily verify all the claimings for every culture mentioned (since there are no references about all these claiming. No studies mentioned. Nothing. All based on author own experience), I can at least say that everything I've read about Italians is based on bias. To give you an example, I'm Italian and this doesn't mean (like the author says) that if the appointment is at 10:00 I will arrive at 10:15 or 10:20. I will possibly arrive at 9:55 and wait 5 minutes and I would be quite annoyed if the other person arrived late. There is also a very bold statement about diversity: the author says that if what we are looking for is diversity of opinions and ideas, then a multi cultural team is what we need but if the most important thing is the productivity then we should have a mono cultural team. Excuse me, what?! You are basically saying that a multi cultural team won't be productive?! This simply disgusted me.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Moh

    Eye opening introduction into how cultures affect work relationships I was quite impressed with how much I’ve learnt from this book. The book talks in detail about how culture manifests itself at work and how it can sometimes cause clashes. It was really interesting to learn about ‘low context’ and ‘high context’ cultures which differ in the level of directness of communication, and how that can cause issues in the workplace. It was also super enlightening to see a ‘map’ of how various cultures r Eye opening introduction into how cultures affect work relationships I was quite impressed with how much I’ve learnt from this book. The book talks in detail about how culture manifests itself at work and how it can sometimes cause clashes. It was really interesting to learn about ‘low context’ and ‘high context’ cultures which differ in the level of directness of communication, and how that can cause issues in the workplace. It was also super enlightening to see a ‘map’ of how various cultures rank on a scale on matters like: confrontation, decision making, loyalty, trust earning, and timeliness. I always assumed that the American way of doing business is the righ way, but now I realize that it’s just simply ‘different’ than how business is done elsewhere, which does not necessarily mean that it’s wrong. I will certainly be more aware of these cultural differences from now on. The only thing I wish the book did better is diving into the reasons that led to the stark difference in cultural at the workplace. I would have loved to understand the historical events that led to this divergence between the western and eastern world. Great learnings overall!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Bredo Erichsen

    This is the book I should have read 20 years ago when starting to work abroad! @erinmeyerinsead gives the background and the examples. I will recommend this book for all people working abroad or working with foreigners back home. Understanding and respect differences are a good start for a successful collaboration.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kamil Goungor

    I saw this book in a store at the Brussels airport, and, since I work on international, multicultural environment, I thought it might be useful to check it out, so I bought it. Often this kind of books disappoint me, but not this one. The 'Culture Map' is a really great read for all those that work or act in a multinational setting (and for everyone else too). Even if your work is going great and you don't have any issues with your colleagues from other countries, you will still find the book in I saw this book in a store at the Brussels airport, and, since I work on international, multicultural environment, I thought it might be useful to check it out, so I bought it. Often this kind of books disappoint me, but not this one. The 'Culture Map' is a really great read for all those that work or act in a multinational setting (and for everyone else too). Even if your work is going great and you don't have any issues with your colleagues from other countries, you will still find the book interesting. You will realise that many actions and behaviors (even your own) are based on our cultural background. You will see that things like sending emails, disagreeing, giving feedback, being on time etc are perceived quite differently, depending on the norms of where you come from. The numerous examples Erin Meyer uses are helping even more, and make the reading process entertaining. I definitely recommend this book!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Gunay

    Loved it!! Insightful, fun, with lots of personal “a-ha” moments for me! I have experience of living in 3 different cultures and interfacing with even more through the job I have in a multinational company. Not only did I find the insights provided in the book very relatable, but the language and anecdotes scattered throughout the books made it even more memorable and digestible.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Herve Tunga

    Excellent! Clear concepts, illustrative examples, without falling for easy stereotyping. A reference on the subject.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Gopal Sadagopal

    good observations of cultural differences and practical guide to interpret and navigate them

  26. 4 out of 5

    Karen Chung

    Unlike many books or discussions on culture, which often tend to be rather abstract, vague and impressionistic, this one covers many of the solid, verifiable differences between people who grew up in different cultures, including how direct or indirect they tend to be, how they provide and react to negative criticism, how to build trust, what it takes to get them to respond to an email quickly or at all, and perceptions of time and punctuality. Indispensable for anybody interacting with or manag Unlike many books or discussions on culture, which often tend to be rather abstract, vague and impressionistic, this one covers many of the solid, verifiable differences between people who grew up in different cultures, including how direct or indirect they tend to be, how they provide and react to negative criticism, how to build trust, what it takes to get them to respond to an email quickly or at all, and perceptions of time and punctuality. Indispensable for anybody interacting with or managing people coming from more than one single culture – highly recommended.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Andy Moore

    Wish I had this to read (at least) 13 years ago. Insightful and practical, with great additional resources available online.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Sera

    I was required to read this book for a program that I am involved in through work. I thought that the author did a great job describing the nuances of working with people from other countries and the differences among cultures when it comes to among other things, leading, persuading and trusting. We had a great conversation regarding these activities, how they vary by country or region, and then we shared examples of how we had each by impacted by these differences within our company. Meyer also I was required to read this book for a program that I am involved in through work. I thought that the author did a great job describing the nuances of working with people from other countries and the differences among cultures when it comes to among other things, leading, persuading and trusting. We had a great conversation regarding these activities, how they vary by country or region, and then we shared examples of how we had each by impacted by these differences within our company. Meyer also plots out on a graph where each country lies on the scale of behaviors so that the reader can identify where on the scale for the particular behavior each country sits to determine how pervasive the behavior is. Meyer uses her first hand experience supplemented by research to support her points, which from the consensus of my group were spot on across the board. I highly recommend this book and consider it mandatory for anyone who works or interacts with others on a global basis.

  29. 4 out of 5

    April-Sterling Mills

    You have to read this book if you work closely with anyone who comes from a different cultural background than you (so hopefully everyone??). I couldn't recommend this book enough, especially to my friends working in cross-cultural contexts or serving globally. Being from the US but working in the UK/Ireland, the differences are very subtle. YET, looking at the culture map validated the hardships I've encountered while looking at the US and the UK in relative terms to one another as they are map You have to read this book if you work closely with anyone who comes from a different cultural background than you (so hopefully everyone??). I couldn't recommend this book enough, especially to my friends working in cross-cultural contexts or serving globally. Being from the US but working in the UK/Ireland, the differences are very subtle. YET, looking at the culture map validated the hardships I've encountered while looking at the US and the UK in relative terms to one another as they are mapped out by Erin. This articulated every little mishap I've ever experienced working, or even being friends with, people who come from a different culture than me. I needed this book and it will forever influence the way the teams I work on operate.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Andreea Lucau

    I feel that the book is written for managers handling multicultural teams, but it can be extremely useful for everyone working and even living in a multicultural environment. I read it as a team exercise and it forces us to reflect about ourselves and to also know the team better. The author proposes 8 scaled for measuring a culture and dedicates a chapter to each one. I don't know if this is the most comprehensive way to dissect cultural differences, but at least for business settings it fits pre I feel that the book is written for managers handling multicultural teams, but it can be extremely useful for everyone working and even living in a multicultural environment. I read it as a team exercise and it forces us to reflect about ourselves and to also know the team better. The author proposes 8 scaled for measuring a culture and dedicates a chapter to each one. I don't know if this is the most comprehensive way to dissect cultural differences, but at least for business settings it fits pretty good.

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