Cultures and Organizations: Software of the Mind

by Geert Hofstede

While sociology, social anthropology, psychology, and politics are topics that can be difficult to grasp without a certain extent of background knowledge in the subject areas, Hofstede clearly illustrates all of them and their connections with each other in his work of non-fiction designed for all readers. 'Cultures and Organizations: Software of the Mind' is a book about the complex systems that dictate the human brain and how we interact and perform as members of groups. Hofstede explores fascinating phenomena such as cultural relativism, which states that to achieve success in cross-cultural communication and collaboration, humans must develop an ability to observe people who are different from them in the perspective of their culture and not their own. As a result, they avoid imposing their world views and belief systems on others who may not share them, preventing the development of toxic pre-conceived notions. The book has something for everyone because of its intersectional approach to group dynamics by observing the subject through factors such as race, gender, and social and economic class. I was most impressed with its ability to explain such complex terms through the viewpoint of someone who has never heard of them and would hardly know the lexicon.

I recommend this book to aspiring leaders because it provides greater knowledge on the best ways to approach group dynamics and leadership with sociological and anthropological backing. It relates to the modern technological world and how people interact within it, something that is important to know if you want to communicate with others effectively. Additionally, it discusses the best ways to approach cross-cultural interactions, which are increasing in frequency with the rise of globalisation and tourism. Because many of us will be leading groups of people from various cultural backgrounds, it is essential to learn how to respectfully navigate working and connecting with people who differ from ourselves.

I cannot recommend this book enough. Its clever and engaging points of discussion and writing make it an absolute must-read. 

Mirengeri Diallo

Rating: 5 Recommend