Global Leadership Blog

Cross Cultural Juicy Tid-Bits

It isn’t uncommon to hook up with a stranger and travel with him or her in Germany, or Europe in general. By ”hookup” I mean meet, connect, and get to know. Sure, you should lock up your bike, car, or home, but in general, one doesn’t worry in Germany about serial killers and random acts of violence and you certainly wouldn’t worry about anyone you know, work, or socialize with being psychotic. This is different on other cultural contexts.

Also, people from Germany obviously haven’t seen the movie When Harry Met Sally. Remember Billy Crystal’s character contends that men and women can’t be friends? Maybe Germans wouldn’t see the point about a movie like that because in their cultural awareness it doesn’t entirely make sense. I’m about to hit you with a revolutionary concept in cross cultural communication here: Friendships between men and women actually exist in Germany.
Now, I don’t mean to say that it can’t get complicated, particularly when cultural diversity is at play, but it is true that men and women may hang out together platonically and nothing romantic will happen, ever. Friendship in Germany is about people who find each other interesting enough to sightsee, debate, and enjoy a nice meal; it could be that it stays like that forever. Of course, it’s icing on the cake if there’s mutual attraction, but if there isn’t, there are no hard feelings. Revolutionary concept #2: A German man or a woman (cross cultural or not) can be rejected romantically by you and still want to be your friend.

Melissa Lamson

About The Author

Melissa Lamson, Founder and President of Lamson Consulting, is an author, consultant, and speaker who accelerates the business expansion goals of today’s most successful companies by developing global mindset, refining leadership skills, and bridging cross cultural communication.
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