For many people, it comes as a surprise that multiple cultures approach services in different ways. Various cultures view services from different perspectives. Sometimes the differences in how different cultures approach services are profound, other times it is far more subtle. Let’s take a look at some of the cultural differences in services around the globe.
How Food Is Served
Going out to restaurants in different cultures can be a very different experience. For example, in the United States, the dining experience is a bit utilitarian. Fast food restaurants dot the landscape throughout the United States. Food is mass-produced. Even when eating in dining establishments, like chain restaurants, the food is mass-produced.
In other cultures, food served in restaurants is cooked from scratch using locally available ingredients. It is not unusual in various cultures for farm to table butchers and their wares to be highlighted on the menu. Locally grown and sourced foods provide the ingredients for an ever-changing menu.
In some cultures, “dining out” means an event that includes table-side preparation of fresh ingredients. It is not unusual in multiple cultures to find that dining guests will turn their noses up at any food that is mass-produced. Diners expect that they will find delicious foods prepared on-site using local ingredients.
Food service is also a bit different across different cultures. In the United States, the expectation that the wait staff will provide service with the hope of receiving a tip is the norm. In other cultures, a tip is not expected.
How the food is served can also vary across multiple cultures. In some cultures, using flatware is not an option. Some cultures serve food “family style” with bowls of food in the middle of the table that diners use flatbread to retrieve instead of serving spoons. Food service can be very different around the globe.
Med spas are big globally. However, how the services are delivered at these spas can vary across multiple cultures. In the United States, most med spa employees have some sort of certificate and formal training. In other areas of the world, certification and training is not a “must have” for someone to open a spa and call it a med spa.
In some cultures, what a med spa does differ. For example, a “med spa” in multiple cultures refers to a place where you go for physical healing, not beauty rituals and improvements. In these types of spas, you may find alternative practitioners that focus on healing the mind, body, and spirit.
Services may be delivered by someone that does have formal education, but they may also be delivered by someone that learned by doing through apprenticeship under family members or other professionals. The types of services can vary greatly across multiple cultures.
Some med spa facilities around the world focus all their energy on providing alternative medical treatments like hypnotherapy, acupuncture, and other treatments meant to heal. Other spas focus on relaxation treatments like massage therapy, meditation, and other relaxation techniques. Still, others focus on anti-aging treatments. It is a complete cornucopia of services that can be very different depending on which culture you ask.
After Life Care
In the United States, funerals, burials, and cremation are the primary offerings for after-life care. While the culture in the United States does use cemetery markers to memorialize loved ones that have passed away, not all cultures follow suit. A lot of cultures handle death and aftercare afterlife very differently from what is considered “normal” in the United States.
In the United States, death is often met with somberness, but in some cultures, a memorial service is a party full of color and fun. Many cultures celebrate the disappearance of a loved one with elaborate events where people are encouraged to enjoy themselves.
Likewise, in different cultures, the mourning period is extensive, and many activities are prohibited during that mourning period. In multiple cultures, the death of a loved one can come with some serious restrictions on family members’ lifestyles. In other cultures, there are no services available for after-life care. That falls on the family. Family members are expected to prepare the body for cremation or burial, including digging the grave themselves and setting up the cremation pyre.
Funeral services and after-life care look very different across multiple cultures. In many cases, it is a culture shock to learn that not everyone views death from the same perspective. Some cultures view death as a reason to celebrate, while others view death as a reason to stop living for a while. After-life care services cater to the specific belief system of the culture.
Childcare services can be very different from one culture to the next. However, care for some cultures all share the same goal; to do what’s best for the children. In most cultures, children are valued. They are viewed as a gift and get the attention that they deserve in childcare settings. However, how that care is delivered can be very different.
For example, in the United States, childcare providers are strictly regulated as to how many children they can care for in the home and how many children can be cared for in a facility. Each state in the United States has rules and regulations that child care providers must follow. In some places, the government does not regulate childcare.
As a matter of fact, in multiple cultures around the world, “a childcare facility” is not a thing. Family members take care of the children in the family. Whether it is grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, or older siblings that provide the care, it is always a family member. Children don’t go to a “babysitter” or a childcare facility. The term “it takes a village to raise a child” is a term that is lived every day around the globe. In multiple cultures, children are taken care of by the “village”.
Of course, in other cultures, childcare systems are elaborate systems with formal daycare and educational settings the norm for most children. In some cultures, the government sends every new baby a care box that includes all the basic necessities they will need as part of their childcare commitment. In these types of cultures, childcare is taken very seriously and focuses heavily on development. Childcare is provided by fully vetted specialists in early childhood development. The services are free in many cultures.
How childcare is delivered around the world is very different. Many cultures share nursing responsibilities for infants. It is not unusual for a breastfeeding mother to nurse her charge as well. In the United States, that is unheard of.
There are a lot of different approaches when it comes to childcare across the multiple cultures that make up the world. Of course, again, the goal in every culture is to promote wellness in the child.
How medical care is delivered and the services that are available differ across multiple cultures. As a matter of fact, in some cultures, medical care as we think of it in the United States is not present. Different cultures have different approaches to caring for their sick. In some cultures, “alternative methods” are the primary care methods.
It may surprise you to hear that in Germany 68% of all prescriptions written are for “herbal” treatments. In the same way, you would take a prescription to the pharmacy and get a pharmaceutical. In Germany, prescriptions for herbal remedies are taken to the pharmacy and you are given a bag of herbs to steep in tea.
In some cultures, you don’t need a prescription for antibiotics. You see the pharmacist and explain your symptoms and they hand you the medication that you need. Medical services in many cultures are not delivered by doctors. It is delivered by paraprofessionals or even community members with no medical training.
It can be a surprise to learn how different medical services can be across various cultures. Even dentistry is delivered differently across different cultures. In some cultures, medical doctors provide dental services. In other cultures, like the United States and most Western cultures, dentists are a separate service entity.
Medical care and services can look very different across different cultures. In some cultures, care falls completely on the family. In others, like in the United States, people go to the doctors and are cared for in hospitals when they are ill. It is not only how the services are delivered that differs, it is the belief about the services that differ.
In some cultures, people are suspicious of doctors and other care providers. Vaccines are not the “norm” because people don’t trust organized medical systems. Additionally, it can be very difficult to find certain services in multiple cultures that are routine in the United States. Partially because people are not interested in the services, and partially because there is a limited number of professional medical providers.
How the multiple cultures treat their sick can be very different as well. In some cultures, superstition supersedes scientific explanations. In many cultures, people attribute illness to bad luck and the medical services that are provided include treatment for “spiritual problems” that are believed to contribute to the problem.
How Animals Are Cared For
In the United States, some pet owners are very cognizant of the importance of professional veterinary services to the health of their pets. However, not everyone in the United States can say that they take their pets to see a veterinarian regularly for health checks. In multiple cultures around the world, pet services are provided by veterinarians. However, in some cultures, fully trained and certified veterinarians are hard to come by.
In some cultures, animals are not only cared for but are worshipped and have free reign in the community. In these cultures, people are trained to provide animal care services by family members and other members of the community. In other words, services are available for animal care but not provided by someone with years of formal education.
Animal care is something that you will find across many cultures as something that takes priority but for different reasons. For example, in some cultures, animal care is essential because animals are highly valued. In other cultures, like in the United States, animal care services are provided because animals are viewed as family members.
Every culture has its own perspective on why animals are important to that culture. Some cultures worship animals as deities. Other cultures value animals because it is how they feed their families, and some cultures value animals as a status symbol of sorts.
Most cultures value animal services, it is just how they are delivered that is different. In some cases, animal care services are based on long-standing traditions that may not have a basis in animal care science, yet the services seem to work.
If you are like most Americans, you get your clothes right off the rack from your favorite department store. They may have “designer labels” but the clothing is still heavily mass-produced. You save customary fashion purchases for special occasions. In multiple cultures, off-the-rack or mass-produced is not really in the vocabulary when it comes to fashion services. Every garment in certain cultures is handmade specifically for your body.
In some cultures, jewelry designs, shoes, clothing, and more are custom-made for the buyer. In these cultures, having closets full of clothes is not typical. Each piece of jewelry and clothing is made by hand, limiting the number of items an individual will have in their closet.
Multiple cultures around the globe do things differently. Services are based on needs and beliefs. What is the norm for one culture can be a very different case for another. Learn more about services from a multi-culture perspective, you will be surprised by what you find.