Tuesday, February 20, 2007

I had to smile over this article in Expatica.com.

It prepares expats for the working environment they'll find when moving to New Zealand and/or Australia.

You want insight, then read on ...

In general, New Zealanders disregard hierarchy. They avoid displays of special respect towards senior people. It's all straight away on first-name basis. Colleagues socialise at all levels. Outside office hours, the hierarchy is even flatter: no differences of behaviour and address may be apparent.
Egalitarianism is a cherished idea and organisations have flat management structures.

New Zealanders typically operate on the principle of "if it’s taller than you, chop it down", a reflex which they share with the Australians. They are convinced that those who think highly of themselves should be brought down. It is especially true when someone, including repatriating New Zealanders, arrives from overseas, claiming to know better!this Expatica post about doing business in New Zealand and Australia ...


Best I don't go home thinking I know more ...

6 comments:

Manic said...

I'm so not going to New Zealand now. I'll be taller than all of them, my head's bound to get chopped off. You monsters!

woman wandering said...

Oh they won't Manic. My brothers and most of my extended family are as tall, if not taller than you :)

You'll be safe ... it's your talent for languages and your knowledge of the inner workings of ancient cathedrals that might get you into trouble ;) otherwise you seemed fairly kiwi to me. I'm sure they'll adopt you.

Mark J said...

refreshing article Di - just goes to show things havent changed to much here.

Manic - if you want to get along with the rest of the kiwis just smile a lot, and speak clearly but quietly. Act shy.

You should be running the country in 6 months.

Watch out for the tall poppies tho!

woman wandering said...

The article amused me Mark ... I remember a 'about dealing with NZ employers' session I had with 2 Belgians a few months ago.

How to explain the way 'we' are suddenly becomes challenging out here in the world where 'tall poppy syndrome' is beyond the comprehension of someone who is good at what they do and who knows they are good.

We were all bemused by the social anthropology lesson that resulted ... I wish I had had that article then.

V-Grrrl said...

Wait til they find our you're a princess!

woman wandering said...

Lol, just wait ... sigh, it won't be amusing at all.