Illustrating how cultural faux pas happen

Ever wondered why we are so susceptible to cultural misunderstandings? Here is a nice little animated video that illustrates perfectly how these mishaps happen – even though our conscious mind would try to avoid them.

The clip was posted by the Living Institute from Denmark and, judging by the narrator’s accent, the company produced it themselves. But there I am, guilty as charged, making assumptions which could lead to a cultural gaffe… forgive me.

Keep an open mind, but not an empty head.


ch (April'14).2Christian is a cultural trainer, coach, and consultant with extensive experience in working with multinational companies and especially in developing global leaders. He is the President and CEO of The Culture Mastery, LLC, where he leads a team of dedicated training, destination services, and expat support specialists. Christian works with global organizations (or those who are going global) to help their employees overcome cultural differences. Typically he only uses the word “normal” in quotation marks and he is an advocate for helping people understand the why of behaviors – not just the dos & don’ts. Most just call him “The Culture Guy”. Find out more about Christian here and follow him on Twitter. You can also see him, listen to him, and experience his work – just invite him!



2 thoughts on “Illustrating how cultural faux pas happen

  1. Reblogged this on Mindful Leadership & Intercultural Communication and commented:
    This little video really illustrates quite impressively how we function as human beings, taking only one little example (holding hands). Imagine how many other gestures, words, behaviours etc. can be misinterpreted and misunderstood in the intercultural context and what consequences this might have… you might want to remember this next time you meet with or work with somebody from a different cultura. Being mindful, open and non-judging is a first step to train your brain to react differently! Enjoy!

  2. Pingback: The 5 biggest lies about expats and life abroad | Southeast Schnitzel

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