Cultural differences

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Mehdi Tuesday, May 11th 2010

Essay on Cultural Differences

Today, thanks to the amazing evolution of new technologies, it is way easier to travel, communicate, share and so on, with people all around the world. Earth is becoming a “Global Village” where all its citizens are on the same level of equity. Everybody, or almosteverybody, can access the Web and its social websites like Twitter or Facebook which are incredibly accelerating this phenomenon. You can, using those new ways of communication, for example trade or meet people living in another continent. Obeying certain rules depending on the way of communicating (business standards are different from an online chat for instance); people can quickly face someproblems due to their different cultures.
Indeed, despite these artificial points all the Earth “villagers” can have in common, a lot of differences do persist between the inhabitants of our planet. History and the current conflicts (economical and/or political) are the main reasons to these differences.
But before we start talking about the differences between cultures, we must explain and definewhat we mean by “culture” and then choosing a culture I will oppose to mine to extract the cultural gaps.
Culture like we mean it concerns all the habits, languages, social codes, values, social references, etc members of a same group can have (group here will be considered as a country).
Stemming from the Moroccan and French cultures, I will opposite myself to Americans.
Morocco and Franceshare a lot of similarities and this makes the link between those two cultures easier. Just to give an example, both cultures do have a high context communication. Similarities are mainly the fruit of two things:
* The geographical location of Morocco and France. Indeed the Mediterranean countries do have a lot in common in spite of the Anglo-Saxon influence on France.
* The decades of Frenchcolonization have inculcated a lot of “French” and European values to the Moroccan culture.

So, to this cultural mix, I will oppose the American culture because of the major role of the WASP community (the White Anglo-Saxon Protestant) which is very different in comparison to my own culture.
Being a nation of immigrants, mainly from northern and eastern Europe, we can say that the Americanculture is a mix of cultures itself. Slaves and Anglo-Saxons made the major part of it, even if a large part of Afro-Americans and Italians (which we can assimilate to my Moroccan and French culture) were present; they had to adapt themselves to the WASP’s trend (habits, codes and values).

Now that we have settled the basis of our study, I’ll start describing and explaining the main culturaldifferences dealing with the corporate culture and the culture’s relationship. But right before that, I have to precise that this study is obviously subjective, based on my own point of view.
We spoke previously about History and how it’s important regarding its influence on a culture. Well we can say that being a monarchy (like was France, the USA was born when they broke up with the EnglishMonarchy) Morocco is a big “family” where the king Mohammed VI is the “father”. Indeed, he is more than the simple head of the government, he is the representative of God on Earth (actually History wants the royal family to be the direct descent of the prophet Mohammed). This side of our culture has a lot to do with the corporate culture. The Family model is the essence of the corporate system inMorocco. People privilege human relations to strictly business relations. It’s mainly a matter of trust.
Even with a simple salesman, people will have the reflex of introducing themselves, talking about a private thing and so on. Creating this mood of trust will encourage both parties (even the buyer or the provider) to think about a mutual interest, a win-win situation.
In this model’s companies,...