Thursday, August 6, 2009

One letter can change the culture


Many of you know that I recently made a transition from CA to CT. All I really changed was one letter (from an “A” to a “T”). Sure, some things would be different, but we were still in the same country, sort of.

As I now know, there were more cultural differences in the singe letter change than anyone could guess. For example:

....................................CA..............................CT
Most popular vehicle....Suburban....................Subaru
Baseball debate............Dodgers or Angels........Yankees or Red Sox
Weather......................None............................Lots
Beaches.......................Public..........................Private
Taxes..........................Lots..............................Less
Daily 4 mile run..........Open beach strand........Privately owned streets

If you are wondering what this has to do with being a good leader, it is about understanding and appreciating individual differences. Certain people characteristics are geographically driven, and the leader who is sensitive to this will be more successful.

Where have you discovered cultural differences and adjusted your leadership approach?

5 comments:

Heather said...

Wow John! Best wishes there. Hope you choose the Red Sox!!!

Anonymous said...

congratulations John, looks like you have landed a new position with Sikorsky!

Rolando said...

Best wishes in CT. I can't wait to see you do a 4 mile run through the streets of Bangalore (is like training for Pamplona). I've noticed that those who are most successful in a different cultural environment are people that go with the flow and just enjoy / appreciate the experience itself without hang-ups on how things were back home. I've recently started a new assignment in India and so far I can see that one needs to be patient. As with many cultures around the world, establishing personal relationships here is the first and most important step to getting things done. See you soon.

daffke said...

subaru is worth a move...careful with the bike on those wet roads

pam said...

California dreamin on such a rainy day..............

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