Today over lunch my friend Barbara showed me this great app: Culture GPS. It’s a great tool for managers or anyone else dealing with a team of people from different cultures. Always wondered why certain people always clash? It might be explained by their cultural background.
CultureGPS is a tool for the iPhone and iPod Touch that enables you to analyze behavior differences in intercultural encounters and to predict to a certain degree, which interactions evolve when people from different nationalities meet and work together. For more information see their site www.culturegps.com
The app is based on the research of Prof. Geert Hofstede, Emeritus Professor, Maastricht University.
For those who work in international business, it is sometimes amazing how different people in other cultures behave. We tend to have a human instinct that ‘deep inside’ all people are the same – but they are not. Therefore, if we go into another country and make decisions based on how we operate in our own home country – the chances are we’ll make some very bad decisions.
Geert Hofstede’s research gives us insights into other cultures so that we can be more effective when interacting with people in other countries. If understood and applied properly, this information should reduce your level of frustration, anxiety, and concern. But most important, Geert Hofstede will give you the ‘edge of understanding’ which translates to more successful results.
The above text and more on Prof. Geert Hofstede’s research can be found on his website http://www.geert-hofstede.com/