Difference of Culture and Perspectives in France – France is Such a Complicated Society with Multi-Cultures!!

France is a country with many opportunities to work while interacting with people of various cultures and multinationals. In general, French people are individualistic, and some of them seem to have an egoist feeling, but this is a mistake. I have lived here in France for more than 10 years and their individualism is just one way to protect and insist on a complex society of different cultures. This time, I will introduce how I can work smoothly in this country without any problems (fun?) With my own opinions and episodes.

Culture Shock

Now, the first day of work. Work starts at 9:30. It shouldn’t be early in the morning, but most French people are late. I’m a serious Japanese and I can’t settle down if I don’t sit at least 10 minutes before the start time, but the French people don’t care about being 10 minutes or 20 minutes late, Bonjour! Enter the office with a smile. However, most late-workers worked overtime for at least the late hours. In short, this is probably because the flextime system is prevalent in France, but as an individualism, there is an attitude that you take responsibility for your actions to the end.

 Strike and solidarity

France is a country with many strikes. A non-remarkable colleague, Pierre, asks, “Where do you live? What district in Paris?” When asked, “Why?”, There will be a RATP (Paris Public Transport) strike from tomorrow, so neither the metro nor the bus will be open. Yeah? ! When I was thinking about what to do, Pierre smiled and said, “Pas de problem (no problem)”. Apparently, every time there is a strike, he takes the lead and takes the lead of the employees with and without the car, covering the inconvenience of the strike. Here, I felt the strength of French solidarity, opposite to individualism. Pierre, who can be an important person if there is such an opportunity, is life on strike? I was really impressed.

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“Work to live” or “live to work”

French people love chatting. At school, at home, on the roadside, in cafes and restaurants, and sometimes in the toilet. Of course, the workplace is no exception.
One day, at lunchtime, after finishing a meal with a regular colleague at an employee cafeteria and trying to return to work, Natalie (a pseudonym) suddenly headed to me, “Why Japanese are like ants? “Do you work?” The conversation that began was brought to the workplace, and finally the conclusion was that Japanese people “live to work” but French people “work to live” …

 I love discussion

In short, French people like discussion rather than chatting. Do you have your own opinion and hit it against the theory? I like that. Unintentionally, Cartesian grinning? So, I feel like I am blessed with the opportunity to promote people who can theoretically claim their opinions even at the workplace. (Of course, there must be good results)

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Work and private life

The French seem to clearly separate the boundaries between “work” and “private life”, but sometimes they are ambiguous. In short, this may come from the extension of “Work to live” in the previous section. In other words, “work” is meant to protect “private life” and is not more than that. It seems.

 Is there such a vacation?!

When I arrived at the work place one morning, there was a small circle in front of the coffee vending machine, and several people were discussing. Well, what about this time, if you get into the circle and listen carefully, it seems that François (a pseudonym) has applied for Congés Sabbatiques. Well, what is sabbatical leave is a system that does not exist in Japan, so it may be difficult for Japanese people to understand. Is to allow. If you apply to the company and it is accepted, you can take a long leave from 6 months to 11 months without resigning.
During the holidays, they are unpaid and are forced to be self-sufficient, but during this time most French people travel around the yacht world, experience foreign life, and receive training to take on completely different occupations. Anyway, it is a vacation to realize the life project that I have always dreamed of.

 What is his dream?

Well, the topic of François’s dream was to train a professional crepe because he wanted to run a crepe shop in the future. I sighed that it wasn’t very good but couldn’t be imitated by Japanese people.

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Spirits of French Revolution

The French Revolution was in 1789. We Japanese already understand it as a historical fact more than 200 years ago, but the temperament of what we hide is still infiltrated in the French. You have to work with the French in this corner. The next episode is my failure, which I didn’t know, rather than forgetting it.

 In the name of “right”

There is an internal meeting every Monday morning. I think that point will not change in Japan, but it will not end so easily at a meeting where French people who love discussions gather. Don’t you think it’s too important? We continue to discuss issues. I wanted to go back to my office early and do my original job, and said, “Soon, it ’s …” Sophie beside me said, “This is our right, I want to know the conclusion! “I will give me a determined determination, an eye-catching gaze to me. Oh, yes, this is France, and it’s too late when I understand that the king was knocked off in the name of “right”. The meeting that day was carried over to that afternoon for that reason.

 Meetings with foreign nationals

There are about 35 attendees at the meeting in the previous section. Counting the nationalities of attendees … America, Algeria, England, China, Italy, and Japan. Yes, there were Iranians. Of course, the French are majority.
However, what is interesting here is that everyone has become more French than their nationality. It may be natural that living under the French system, speaking in French almost every day, drinking Bordeaux wine, and drinking Camembert cheese is a matter of course. I feel like I’m working together while carrying such a thing, or the culture of the homeland that can’t be wiped out. That’s why sometimes very unique and original ideas pop out. Speaking of which, Pierre de Coubertin, the French who invented the modern Olympics, wasn’t it?

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Stand up, Japanese!

In any world, working with people who are different from your own country is something that you can never understand. Every time I get angry or depressed, I can’t move forward. First of all, don’t forget your personality without trying to match your opponent (in this case, the French). In France, where self-assertion is strong but respects the individuality of individuals, the work is carried out more smoothly. Also, don’t squeeze your opponent so much.
Finally, don’t forget how big it is. Well, if you can feel that French is like this, you are passing!

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