Most of us recognize that time is treated differently in different cultures. This usually comes up when someone from another culture is late for a meeting & makes a joke about being on “local” time.
But there are deeper consequences of the truth that people experience time differently depending on their cultural background. Many Asian cultures, even in modern times, are affected by religious & political views of time going in cycles. Beings reincarnate, empires come & go, families rise & fall & rise again. Western culture, whether from religious views of progress to a final heavenly destination or evolutionary, utopian political visions, see time trending in a line.
These views affect the way we see our present & future. One experiment showed that Americans expected trends to continue in the same direction, especially if the data showed acceleration. Many Chinese saw accelerating data as a sign that a reversal would be coming up.
You can see the experiment write-up below:
Rather than judging whether one view is better than the other, it’s wise to be aware of our own perspective & understand that of others.
@ Soft Power Skills Academy, a time/cost-effective alternative to an MBA, we learn & practice culturally-relevant leadership & soft skills.
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