Did you know? In 1994 Malcolm & I were offered a 2 year secondment to Chicago, USA with our respective orgnisations. We jumped at the chance!
Malcolm’s organisation offered us relocation training, a weekend of “intensive” learning around the cultural differences we were likely to experience as we integrated into our new home and work environment state-side.
At the time I remember thinking this training was a bit extreme. I’d grown up in the Far East. I knew that the culture there was so very different to the UK – but the USA??
Surely, with the exception of a few spelling differences (so many “Zees/Zeds” instead of “Esses”!), there wasn’t going to be too much of a cultural awareness or shift needed for Malcolm and I to “fit in”?
How very wrong and naïve I was!
The relocation training was an absolute eye-opener and it prepared us both for the emotions we would experience (change curve eat your heart out!) and the societal differences between the UK and US.
We absolutely loved our 2 year sojourn in Chicago.
We worked hard.
We played hard.
But more importantly, we developed our cultural awareness (and curiosity). We learned that to foster empathy and respect for different opinions and perspectives is paramount in life. And this learning and awareness has set the foundation for being able to connect with you, the EAs and PAs across the world, who are embarking on a learning journey with us, be that our Ofqual regulated qualifications or our Mini MBA for Senior & Executive Assistants Programme.
Remember – always consider things from another point of view!