UNIT 4 ATTITUDE TO TIME and SPACE In English the words “time” and “money” can be used with the same verbs, like: spend, save, waste, have, lack, and invest, etc. In many cultures the idea of wasting time is seen as regrettable and it is considered unacceptable to make others waste time by being late. However, there are cultures where it is a norm not to be punctual. In some cultures time and delay are used to demonstrate power and authority. In most European countries it is considered bad manners. In Argentina punctuality is appreciated and expected from visitors for all business related occasions. However, you may find your Argentinean partners to be 15-20 minutes late. Guests to home invitations are expected to show up 15 minutes late. For dinner parties guests can arrive even 30 minutes late. In Finland and Denmark punctuality is very important and they expect the same of foreigners even for social engagements. You should be punctual also in Poland. If you cannot be on time inform the other person about the circumstances which have delayed you. Arriving late can make you appear unreliable, and may have a negative effect on the negotiations. When you are invited at a Polish home, you should arrive 15 minutes after the given time. This time allows the host to prepare everything without hurry. Don’t be late by more than 30 minutes. Turks do not practice time keeping and punctuality perfectly, but they will expect you to do so. If you arrive on time, it is not uncommon for you to be left waiting until the previous meeting or a telephone call is finished. In many English speaking countries invitations to social events are sometimes formulated as “7.30 for 8.00p.m.”, for example for a formal dinner party. This means you are expected to arrive between these times and the dinner will start at 8.00p.m. Arriving outside these times would be impolite. Answer the questions. 1. What did you find in common as to punctuality in all the above mentioned countries? 2. When you are asked to wait, do you feel it as waste of time, a norm, bad manners or somebody demonstrating power and authority? TICK THE STATEMENT THAT BEST DESCRIBES Worksheet THE ACTION YOU WOULD TAKE OR HOW YOU FEEL IN EACH CASE 1. A. In a meeting you should stick to the agenda. 2. B. An agenda is just a piece of paper. Digressions are inevitable. A. You shouldn’t take deadlines too seriously. Anything can happen. B. Deadlines are like a promise we have to keep. 3. A . Interruptions usually cannot be avoided and are often quite beneficial. B. Interruptions should be avoided. 4. A . It is more efficient if you do one thing at a time. B. I can do two or three things at the same time. I feel uncomfortable when something unanticipated happens. B. Unexpected things happen all the time. That’s life. 5. A . 6. A. Talk about personal matters is part of your job. B. You should save personal talk for a coffee break . A In most cases I tend to be people – oriented. B. I tend to be task-oriented. You shouldn’t take a phone call when you are meeting with another person. B. It would be rude not to take a phone call if I am in the 0ffice. A 7. 8. B. Are you more POLYCHRONIC or MONOCHRONIC? MONOCHRONIC: 1.A , 2.B, 3.B, 4.A , 5.A , 6.B , 7.B , 8.A POLYCHRONIC : 1.B , 2.A, 3.A, 4.B , 5. B, 6.A , 7. A , 8. B What generalizations can you make about the concept of time for monochromic and polychromic behaviour? People’s sense of personal space- the distance that separates them from another person- also varies between people of different nationalities. People from different cultures are often seen “chasing” each other around the room during a friendly conversation. One of them keeps stepping forward to get closer to the other person, and the other keeps stepping back to allow for more space between them. This happens because the two people involved need different personal space around them. It’s the space they consider as their own. They need it for comfortable social interaction. What feels right for one nationality may feel uncomfortable for another. British zoologist, Desmond Morris, has identified three “personal space” zones in Europe. In such countries as Italy, Greece, France and Spain, people stand quite close to touch each other easily. D. Morris calls this the “elbow” zone. In East European countries, such as Poland, Romania, and Hungary, people stand a little more distant. He calls this “wrist” zone, because they are close enough to touch wrists. In Britain, Germany, Belgium and Scandinavian countries, people prefer to stand further away from each other, and they do not generally touch. D. Morris calls it the “fingertip” zone. People from overcrowded countries tend to have smaller distances. South Americans and Arab cultures are examples where people feel much more comfortable getting what we’d consider uncomfortably close. Often people’s comfort zone is different depending on where they are and who they are with. Personal space also can be heavily affected by a person’s position in society. People living in villages and smaller towns also have a closer distance during conversation, while people from big cities are less close. Typically, women are more tolerant of space invaders than men. Different people have different thresholds. Personal space is not only an area people need around them to feel comfortable, but it also extends to questions of housing(which rooms of a house would be considered ”public” and which are considered ”private”) and urban development. Answer the questions: 1. Which aspects influence personal comfort zone? 2. Which personal space zone would your culture belong to according to Desmond Morris classification?
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