Monday, 12 September 2016

THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO CUSTOMS & CULTURE: CULTURE SMART! GERMANY BY BARRY TOMALIN

This book provides a worthwhile insight into the German’s way of life. The key facts are interesting to note and acts as a source for further guidance. Roman historian Tacitus gave the name ‘’Germania’’. The political and cultural impact of the united- states on modern Germany has been profound. As a member of the European union and of the Eurozone, Germany has replaced the Deutschmark with Euro. Germany is a multiparty Democracy and the list of the main political- parties were also given in the first chapter.The importance of ‘’ORDNUNG MUSSEIN,’’ KLARHEIT, and ‘’ALLESKLAR’’ under the heading of values and attitudes were given elaborate meaning and explanation about their usage.  Prince Albert-Queen Victoria’s German consort introduced to Britain the Christmas trees, decorations and cards. This highlights the origin of these customs in Germany.Apart from the regular festivals, German’s celebrate non- religious festivals like Richtfest &schultute, Oktoberfest and other annual fairs [Messe] found place in the list of celebrations. German families take time to their personal celebrations like birthdays, weddings and Familientreffen. Historic celebrations with the help of sound and light are conducted namely Son et lumie’re and Oberammergau.
Germans are hardworking and quite fit. Gardening is very popular. As they are fitness freaks, sports clubs and leisure activities play a large part in many German’s lifestyle. Hiking and walking especially in groups are popular weekend activities as is cycling. The usage of ‘du’ and ‘sie’ is elucidated. Germans are friendly and hospitable to foreigners. They are very pollution conscious. That’s why they avoid non bio degradable wrapping.  ’’Manners makyth Man.’’ Germany is one of the most ecologically aware countries in Europe and this manifests itself in garbage collection and recycling.
Germany is richer in Museums than most other countries. It denotes their conscious efforts to safe guard their culture and civilization. A list is given about the road sense in Germany. Staying in Germany can be a relaxing affair, as accommodation is clean and efficient Some social scientists claim that up to 80% of communication is non- verbal.  List of 5 German gestures were explained. 6 useful precautions list regarding health and security is stated. Leadership in German companies is quite hierarchical. Women have equal rights under the German constitution and there is no discrimination on the basis of sex. The Germans respond well through presentations, supported by detailed facts and specifications. This shows their observation and dedication towards work.
Finally Appendix covers the simple vocabulary- list of words on signs and list of phrases to direct tourist towards the destination. ‘’ The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even heard, but must be felt with the heart.’’- Helen Keller.
So, make a definite trip to culture smart Germany!
Snippets:
*Barry Tomalin is an English writer and trainer.  He is an expert on the business   culture of Germany. The author of many books on culture and on cultural training; he is currently a module leader on the MA program in Media Technology and culture studies at the University of West-minister in London.
*The German way to solve a problem is first to analyse it in depth.
*The business in Germany involves a lot of diplomacy and protocol. In German offices the management style is very direct.
*In shopping the Germans, like the Italians, value the quality of fresh food and appreciate seasonal variety.
*Germans annual vacations are generous by any standards. May& June are popular vacation times as are July & August.
*Be careful not to give presents before someone’s birthday, it is considered bad luck.
*Wedding rings are worn on the third finger of the right hand, and engagement rings on the third finger of the left hand.

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