By Maëlle Alquezar
A study published by Steelcase revealed the workplace culture code depending on countries.
Steelcase – a global company that develops furniture products and services for workplaces – has analysed the work habits in a dozen countries. If workplaces and atmosphere at work can vary depending on offices, these differences can be striking when crossing borders.
According to this study, British people work away from their office without any problems. They are likely to bring work home or complete it whilst traveling on public transport. They do not necessarily stop working after their shifts; their professional and private lives are closely linked. Great Britain is an individualist country meaning that high levels of autonomy and self-reliance are expected. However, Great Britain also uses coworking places or desk sharing.
Across the Channel, very different behaviours are found. If German workers are individualist, they also attach importance to striking a balance between private life on the one hand and professional life on the other, unlike British people. German workers prefer to have a structured framework and do not appreciate lateness, uncertainty, or unforeseen events.
France, Italy and Spain have very similar patterns towards space optimization as they all appreciate ample work space and do not like sharing it. This trend is completely different in emerging economies such as India, China or Russia where physical spaces depend on the employee’s authority and position. This reflects the high power distance between superiors and employees in these countries. Conversely, in the United States, communication and participation are at the heart of the workplace culture. Employees are frequently encouraged to share their ideas.
How would you describe your workplace culture? Do you agree with the results of this study?
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