The Real Reason American Office Culture Is Bizarre To Non-Americans

Culture generally, and not just religious, political, or office culture, is made up of practices and social behaviors that have slowly gotten entrenched in a society's way of life. Over time, the shared practices of a society can evolve, and the same goes for culture. This means that culture shifts from society to society, and some have shared habits, while others have their own. This culture shift is why certain things in America seem so bizarre to foreigners.

An example of this is the system of measurement. Most countries today use the metric system of measurement.However, America is one of the few countries that uses the imperial system, according Inter Exchange. It might feel weird to imagine measuring things in meters and grams, but just remember that inches and ounces seem equally weird to non-Americans.

Another example is America's tipping culture, which is something that has continued to amaze immigrants, foreign students, and tourists. They are often confused on when to tip, how much should be tipped, and why tipping is even necessary, per Delmarva Now.

Just as strange to non-Americans is the American office culture and how people interact at work.

Why non-Americans think American office culture is bizarre

According to The Balance Careers, the office is a very important place where many Americans spend at least 34.4 hours every week. To such people, it is perfectly okay to devote this amount of time, sometimes more, to work. Most non-Americans, however, consider these hours too long and balk at the very idea.

Compared to people from other countries, American workers get less time off to pursue other interests and hobbies than their counterparts in other countries, We Forum noted. In European countries, unlike in the U.S., there are strict regulations that limit work hours per week — laws that regulate the times between which people can work. For example, in Portugal, managers can't call employees about work before their day begins or after they are done for the day,

Non-Americans are also confused by the fact that despite the long hours, American office culture is also less formal than most places. An example of this is the way Americans greet co-workers, compared to the more formal atmosphere in offices in other countries.

The workplace habit of eating at your desk is also something that stumps non-Americans. In France, Greece, and other countries, employees usually get a one hour lunch break. As opposed to their American counterparts, this is a period they rarely spend at their desks trying to get more work done, according to Business Insider.