American French Cultural Difference V2

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Information about American French Cultural Difference V2

Published on October 5, 2007

Author: oma

Source: slideshare.net

Description

A light and fun approach on inter-cultural relations.

American & French Cultural differences A light and fun approach on inter-cultural relations.   ‘ If we cannot now end our differences, at least we can help make the world safe for diversity’ (J.F. Kennedy)

‘ If we cannot now end our differences,

at least we can help make the world safe for diversity’ (J.F. Kennedy)

What’s inside ? Clichés and stereotypes A psychoanalytical view.... Intercultural management Views from managers Body language Famous Quotes Conclusion References

Clichés and stereotypes

A psychoanalytical view....

Intercultural management

Views from managers

Body language

Famous Quotes

Conclusion

References

Stereotypes & Clichés Clichés about ‘USA’ Clichés about ‘France’

Stereotypes The French see the Americans as ... E pluribus unum and In God We Trust arrogant and sure they are always right and good, moralizing and very religious de grands enfants (ie, people who are naive and have no, or a too short, history) people who have free access to guns and who use them to shoot each other when things go wrong people who are arch-capitalists and only think about money people who do not understand other nations and whose press never addresses international issues : people who do not take criticism  For an American it is hard to conceive that a country operating as French can be the fourth the fifth world economic power ! The Americans see the French as ... 'Liberté, égalité, fraternité‘ for "freedom, equality, brotherhood" people who do not work people who don't speak English people who are rude to tourists, anti-American and ungrateful people who live in a bureaucratic Socialist system and who are totally dependent on the State people who do not use soap arrogant and conceited people distant and difficult to meet people who do not respect religious freedom etc... french have the reputation of being very chauvinist (  the word itself comes from a character in a XIXth century play, a fellow named Chauvin who was a soldier of Napoleon).

The French see the Americans as ...

E pluribus unum

and In God We Trust

arrogant and sure they are always right and good, moralizing and very religious

de grands enfants (ie, people who are naive and have no, or a too short, history)

people who have free access to guns and who use them to shoot each other when things go wrong

people who are arch-capitalists and only think about money

people who do not understand other nations and whose press never addresses international issues :

people who do not take criticism

 For an American it is hard to conceive that a country operating as French can be the fourth the fifth world economic power !

The Americans see the French as ...

'Liberté, égalité, fraternité‘

for "freedom, equality,

brotherhood"

people who do not work

people who don't speak English

people who are rude to tourists, anti-American and ungrateful

people who live in a bureaucratic Socialist system and who are totally dependent on the State

people who do not use soap

arrogant and conceited people distant and difficult to meet

people who do not respect religious freedom

etc...

french have the reputation of being very chauvinist (  the word itself comes from a character in a XIXth century play, a fellow named Chauvin who was a soldier of Napoleon).

A psychoanalytical view.... Americans are weaned early and toilet trained late Schools help American kids become independent and autonomous. Their mother says : "have fun” French are weaned much later and toilet trained much earlier French kids learn the principle of authority. Theirs mother says : "be good ".. are highly explicit optimist and positive : value present and future ; good at action binary : "it is true or false" like what is simple do not lie (it is bad) want to be loved social identity is based on the individual law and contracts must be respected ; everything is in the contract once it is signed a contract is not linked to the relationship process oriented : everything must be clear and documented ; reacts as planned try to get a win-win deal DOING : you are judged on what you do value quality of work are highly implicit pessimist and negative : value past ; good at analysis and criticism contextual : "it depends" like what is complex lying is no big deal want to be independent based on being a member of a group try not to get caught ; signing a contract is just the beginning the contract is strongly associated with the relationship if the other one wins, it means that I'll lose BEING : you are judged on what you are value quality of life

Americans are weaned early and toilet trained late

Schools help American kids become independent and autonomous. Their mother says : "have fun”

are highly explicit

optimist and positive : value present and future ; good at action

binary : "it is true or false"

like what is simple

do not lie (it is bad)

want to be loved

social identity is based on the individual

law and contracts must be respected ; everything is in the contract once it is signed

a contract is not linked to the relationship

process oriented : everything must be clear and documented ; reacts as planned

try to get a win-win deal

DOING : you are judged on what you do

value quality of work

are highly implicit

pessimist and negative : value past ; good at analysis and criticism

contextual : "it depends"

like what is complex

lying is no big deal

want to be independent

based on being a member of a group

try not to get caught ; signing a contract is just the beginning

the contract is strongly associated with the relationship

if the other one wins, it means that I'll lose

BEING : you are judged on what you are

value quality of life

Intercultural management American seen by French American are French seen by American French are arrogant and dominating BIG BUBBLE avoid physical contact touch you too much SMALL BUBBLE security is being part of a group Interpersonal Distance too much into details bureaucratic MONOCHRONIC time is money exactitude is essential not focused dispersed POLYCHRONIC schedule independent you can be late if you had something better to do Time boring disrespectful not creative LOW CONTEXT everything must be clear everything is in the contract disorganized unsincere not disciplined HIGHT CONTEXT a place must be left for adaptation and interpretation everything is in the relationship Context

arrogant and dominating

BIG BUBBLE

avoid physical contact

touch you too much

SMALL BUBBLE

security is being part of a group

too much into details

bureaucratic

MONOCHRONIC

time is money

exactitude is essential

not focused

dispersed

POLYCHRONIC

schedule independent

you can be late if you had something better to do

boring

disrespectful

not creative

LOW CONTEXT

everything must be clear

everything is in the contract

disorganized

unsincere

not disciplined

HIGHT CONTEXT

a place must be left for adaptation and interpretation

everything is in the relationship

Views from managers If you make a mistake, you're proud to admit it If you make a mistake, you will admit to it ! Seniority is by merit and achievement Seniority is by age and ascribed. People are superficially relaxed but the boss is the boss There's a clear hierarchy - people even seem to be over-supervised There's little job security. People are hired and fired with no reason or argument within 15 days It's difficult to get rid of everyone ! When a decision is taken, there is a 'steam roller' effect and no argument Decisions are rarely without discussion and argument People don't look left or right, they go straight ahead with their specific job People like to know what everyone else is doing People work individually to do the job they are paid for without questioning anything People work in the middle of everyone else Each person is a specialist in his/her own fields People like to know a little bit of everything   French impression of the American American impression of the French 

Views from managers Americans always have a ‘Corporate identity’ French tend to be less corporate Work is seen as rational and systematic - you work towards achieving an objective Business is a human affair including intuition and emotion Direct workers are under-or not qualified tend to accept any jobs or conditions Direct workers are often well-qualified and participate more in the company Meetings are kept to a minimum Meetings are less controlled .. But the system is quickly becoming more Americanized Reporting techniques are very technical and procedure-like Too much paperwork … Less administratives headaches to cope with the tax declaration Do you really want to know how long a French declaration tax is ? French impression of the American  American impression of the French   

Body language An American will put his bread on his plate and will put his hands on his thighs French will put his bread on the table and put his hands on the table Enjoy a meal with him An American will look as if he was afraid of bad breath, stay as far as possible and give a big slap on the back of the other person French like the Spanish with his abrazo, will actually TOUCH the body of the other person and act as if he was enjoying it Make him hug An American will form a circle joining histhumb and index (in French, this gesture means : "zero") French will put his thumb upright Make him say "everything is OK An American will talk about anything French will try to avoid any eye contact Put him in an elevator An American will move his arms and take-up a lot of space French will be much stiffer Make him walk An American will start with the little finger and end with the thumb French will start with the thumb and end with the little finger Make him count 1,2,3,4,...    

Famous quotes  America is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to degeneration without the usual interval of civilization (Georges Clémenceau) When good Americans die, they go to Paris (Oscar Wilde) How it is difficult for Americans even those of good will to not consider themselves the center of the universe ! (Simone de Beauvoir) Nothing will amaze an American. (Jules Verne) In Paris they simply stared when I spoke to them in French; I never did succeed in making those idiots understand their own language (Mark Twain) The French complain of everything, and always (Bonaparte) The anti-french quote of the year  "You know the trouble with the French, they don't even have a word for "entrepreneur“ (G.W.Bush) What's the quickest way to make a profit? Buy a Frenchman for what he's worth and sell him for what he thinks he's worth.

America is the only nation in history which miraculously has gone directly from barbarism to degeneration without the usual interval of civilization (Georges Clémenceau)

When good Americans die, they go to Paris (Oscar Wilde)

How it is difficult for Americans even those of good will to not consider themselves the center of the universe ! (Simone de Beauvoir)

Nothing will amaze an American. (Jules Verne)

In Paris they simply stared when I spoke to them in French; I never did succeed in making those idiots understand their own language (Mark Twain)

The French complain of everything, and always (Bonaparte)

The anti-french quote of the year  "You know the trouble with the French, they don't even have a word for "entrepreneur“ (G.W.Bush)

What's the quickest way to make a profit? Buy a Frenchman for what he's worth and sell him for what he thinks he's worth.

Conclusion French & American comparisons are just examples amongst many – we can compare French & Italians or Northern French & Southern French etc …  There are many factors : social, cultural, ethnics etc… but at the end of the day we’re all human beings so the best thing is to BE AWARE OF DIFFERENCES, ACCEPT & WORK WITH THEM. And now what do you think ? “ Culture is more often a source of conflict than of synergy. Cultural differences are a nuisance at best and often a disaster.”  (Geert Hofstede) Or “ The most universal quality is diversity.” (Montaigne)

French & American comparisons are just examples amongst many – we can compare French & Italians or Northern French & Southern French etc … 

There are many factors : social, cultural, ethnics etc… but at the end of the day we’re all human beings so the best thing is to BE AWARE OF DIFFERENCES, ACCEPT & WORK WITH THEM.

And now what do you think ?

“ Culture is more often a source of conflict than of synergy. Cultural differences are a nuisance at best and often a disaster.”  (Geert Hofstede)

Or

“ The most universal quality is diversity.” (Montaigne)

References http://www. understandfrance .org http://www.pbaudry.com/ ( Pascal Baudry is a Frenchman who lives in California where he runs an organization that holds seminars on international management. Book ‘Français/Américain, ces différences qui nous rassemblent’. (B.Asselin et R.Mastron) (but in French) http://www. geert - hofstede .com/ (more general) Please share comments with [email_address]

http://www. understandfrance .org

http://www.pbaudry.com/ ( Pascal Baudry is a Frenchman who lives in California where he runs an organization that holds seminars on international management.

Book ‘Français/Américain, ces différences qui nous rassemblent’. (B.Asselin et R.Mastron) (but in French)

http://www. geert - hofstede .com/ (more general)

Please share comments with [email_address]

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