The speaker presents a prescription based on a profound understanding of human beings. That’s the way it seems to me anyway. Some listeners find what’s said challenging, and reject the messages, saying it’s all very “American”. (This scene is in the UK, needless to say.)
What the doubters hear doesn’t fit for them.
But here’s the thing…
How aware are they of their conditioning from where they grew up? Not much, would be my thought.
In my experience, engaging in learning programs with participants from different cultures teaches us, often with a sudden, shocking realization that what we thought was just part of the human makeup is, no, actually part of our cultural programming—no more than that and about as useful.
We have lots of this imprint, and we are blind to most of it. Our conditioning amounts to unconscious “competence”, helping us fit in at an earlier stage in life. So we don’t realize when we’re reacting to something that the dissonance may be a function of our programming, and not anything fundamental.
Mixing up and integrating cultures tends to reveal the essence of being human and I’d say it’s worth listening to those from countries where mixing of cultures is a major feature. They might be seeing more clearly.
And it’s good to be aware of the specifics of your own cultural conditioning. It’s a big job, but worth it.
What do you do to avoid cultural biases in your work, and with other people?
(And how aware am I of mine in writing this?)