- Leandro Herrero - https://leandroherrero.com -

The One Global Culture does not exist. But pretending that it does holds us together.

The so-called One Global Culture is a confederation of:

(a) Geographical cultures and sub-cultures (Italy, USA, France etc)

(b) Functional, tribal cultures and subcultures (engineers, accountants, IT, basic researchers, etc)

(c ) Held together by universal mechanisms of power and influence (loose or tight, hierarchical, peer-to-peer etc)

(d) Hosting different belonging and loyalties (local, HQ, “The Americans’, etc)

(e) Glued by cross border rituals and ceremonies (strategic plan process, sales conventions, companywide conferences, leadership conferences, global talent management training)

(d) Under a universal narrative (values, missions and visions) that may or may not drive behaviours, which is refreshed from time-to-time

[Note1: part of this narrative may be a ‘root narrative’ such as the founders, the struggles, the heroes, and the guys in a garage with a telephone. Note2: the validity of this root narrative may not be terribly relevant; after all, entire tribes have been created and sustained under the root narrative of ancestors crossing rivers that did not exist, fighting wars that did not take place, or for years wandering deserts that nobody has touched]

(e) With a declared purpose and ‘space in the world’ which may or may not have deep meaning and may or may not be a driver for anything else

(f) All of the above connected by ‘social algorithms’ (when A happens, we do B) most of them unwritten

(g) Add a series of invisible rules that change from time-to-time

My view of culture over the years has evolved from a rather naive ‘managerial’ and Anglo Saxon one, when I was on the payroll of top corporations (many moons ago) to the socio-anthropological one. Social Anthropology provides a much better set of lenses and frames to understand what’s going on in a Global/One Culture, and, more importantly, how to navigate those waters.