• Thought Catalyst Partners

Highlight 2 from TCP Live#4 - How to Adapt to Various Hierarchical Cultures?

An important piece of advice for professionals new to the corporate hierarchical culture.

In last month’s TCP live on “How to adapt to various hierarchical corporate cultures?”, the experts at TCP Growth shared important insights for any professional looking to adapt and thrive in the corporate hierarchical culture.

Harnessing the power of observation is important.

A hierarchical culture is defined by a clear chain of command and multiple management tiers that separate employees and leadership. And everyone knows their place exactly in the hierarchy.

In western culture also there is hierarchy, but in Asian cultures, it’s more of a mindset.

For someone who is not accustomed to this, it could be counterintuitive, especially for people from western cultures because they are used to challenging ideas.

They might be tempted to give feedback and share their expertise and views as soon as they arrive.

But that’s one of the common reasons International people have problems in the beginning.

Cross-cultural storytelling coach, Jan Kot explains that in a new cultural environment it’s critical to first observe and figure out the goals of your boss and colleagues, perform and earn their trust before you voice your own ideas.

Getting straight down to giving feedback in a hierarchical culture would be seen as breaking the strict chain of command and it can be offensive for the people you are going to work with.

Do you agree?


About the Speaker:

Jan Kot is a certified coach specializing in intercultural storytelling with her S.T.O.R.Y model.

The former journalist was born and raised in Shanghai, educated in Hong Kong and the US. With a bachelor's degree in journalism and a master's degree in creative writing, Jan has over the years taken a ring-side seat in witnessing and documenting China’s rise to global power.

During her earlier career, Jan worked as a reporter for a number of news and business publications in the region with a focus on China’s social and cultural transformation as the country in preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2010 Shanghai World Expo.

She was also one of the first Chinese writers to report on Chinese in Africa. In 2011, Jan became a founding member of Juwai.com, an international property portal for the Chinese.

In 2019, Jan founded The Tale Blazers in Shanghai, a consultancy agency that empowers brands and businesses to tell better stories. Jan speaks English, Mandarin, and Cantonese.

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