shock is an experience that disorients one from his/her regular habits. It can
be defined as a natural state of psychological and physical disorientation that
can occur on encountering a new environment and culture. It is said to be an
away from familiar culture
a new environment and norms
the odd one out in a different set of crowd
shock is essential for an organization’s growth because it contributes towards
the development of an individual as well as the organisation which sets a
benchmark to sustain with the same. This is due to the employee satisfaction
and employee engagement arising out of environment and the culture. An employee
is satisfied when he accustoms himself with the environment of the organization
and it is proven that an employee who is satisfied and actively engaged with an
organization performs 20% better than those who are not satisfied and actively engaged.
Dissatisfaction may arise due to the employee hindering himself from accepting
individual can undergo culture shock. Many successful professionals have also
encountered culture shock. Personality is one of the main factors that
influence the extent of the shock arising due to culture. It can be well
understood with the help of BIG FIVE MODEL THEORY. If an employee scores high on
characteristics like openness, extrovert, agreeableness, he can handle the new
set of culture easily when compared to employees who are introverts.
How to overcome or deal with
Have an idea about the work place:
It is very important to learn as much as one can about the culture,
expectations beforehand so that it will help the individual and prepare himself
to face the new habitat and have an open mind.
Accept the differences: Anyone
can identify the culture differences between the home and host countries, or
between an old culture and a new culture; but the level of acceptance varies
from person to person. It is necessary to accept and appreciate them, and see
them as an opportunity for growth and new learning.
Never compare: Avoid comparisons of habits and culture of
the home and host country and the old and new culture. This can never make any
employee settle quickly in a new environment. Nothing is said to be perfect in
this world. Every environment has its own pros and cons. Comparison will not
allow anyone to stay longer in one place.
Learn the differences: Every
situation will have a lesson to teach us; so learning along the way will
improve one’s experiences. Focusing on positive factors of the new environment
paves way for development, and learning them can change one’s perspective on
culture, habits and lifestyle.
Develop an optimistic attitude:
Dr Martin Seligman (1990) in his writing
on ‘Learned Optimism’, highlighted three
things in an individual’s mind that can help in maintaining optimism to meet
challenging situations. They are
is happening is not Personal
is happening is not Pervasive
is happening is not Permanent
this attitude grows among individuals, there is a better chance to overcome
major challenges like culture shock.