Mark in Munich

What advice do you have for Americans seeking employment in Germany?

Public Relations has a very large impact in Germany. Mark had a lot to say about the job market in a large city like Munich. Famous musicians and actors are found throughout Munich constantly for numerous reasons, usually an event that they are part of. Restaurants and bars are very prominent throughout Germany. Hotels are almost constantly overbooked. Octoberfest too is a huge part of Germany’s culture and draws millions of visitors every year making headlines throughout the world.

What do you think is negative about American communication?

Mark had a very interesting perception of our mass communication culture. The media seems to be very involved in choosing a side and trying very hard to prove that they are what the masses should believe when what they are saying may not always be true. I’m sure everyone has watch CNN or FOX news stations which seem to both have completely different stories when talking about the same subject, it is kind of amusing. Mark feels that the average American would not be educated enough to Make his/her own decision about political decisions and would most likely go with the information they found watching television or listening to the radio, rather than trying to find truth and make an educated decision. Mark also spoke about the reality television that is so prominent in America, he says that Germany does not care about what someone else’s life is like, they find this information useless. I agree Mark I hate reality television.

What publications do you read in Germany?

Let me just start by saying that Mark is what American’s might call “fly.” He chooses to read GQ (Gentleman’s Quarterly) and finds that the production is very skewed based on where it is being sold. He really enjoys reading the information about what is popular in American culture, German culture, and European culture in general. Mark finds that in Germany GQ might have an entirely different idea about what is trendy or popular than what America thinks. He stated that when he went home this past summer and purchased a GQ in Germany, after buying the American GQ he found striking differences in the subject matter. This is interesting, it shows how popular trends are accepted by different cultures.

What is different about tennis in the United States than in Germany?

In Germany people still like to think of tennis as a classic sport, that involves tradition and pride. The sport is still very competitive and requires a lot of skill to succeed but all the less still a way to enjoy yourself. Mark made sure to say that this is not unlike the United States, however there are still differences in the tennis culture in America. Mark plays for the team at Georgia Southern University and has a ton of talent. He feels that the innovations in equipment technology have brought tennis to a whole new level. He believes that tennis is much more like a show, or a product to be sold rather than a humble tradition. Mark claims that dedication seems stronger in Germany than it does in the states. He made sure to say that he knows plenty of Americans who had proven him wrong on this matter, but he sees the big picture this way.

How did you feel initially when you moved to an entirely different culture?

Mark claimed that he felt very comfortable. In Germany most people speak English his communication boundaries would not be an issue. The states are seen as a very big deal in Europe and he wanted to embrace moving here to go to college. Mark finds that Hollywood, Las Vegas, and New York all seemed very interesting to him moving from Munich, Germany. I have to say, I’m just as interested in Munich after speaking with Mark.

What surprised you about cultural differences b/w America and Germany?

Americans are much more open and welcoming. In Germany people are not necessarily mean or hateful but would rather be truthful when interacting with one another. Mark claimed that Americans are not very truthful in face, meaning that their true emotions is not their strong suit. In Germany if people do not like you, you will be told just  that. It is not considered disrespectful or rude but considered normal. Lets face it, Mark and I live in the South, as do the students in my class; this can be a difficult place to transition to if these are the cultural characteristics you are used to.

What is your view of business in Germany?

Germany is very resourceful and plays a large role in global business. Munich has the 14th busiest airport in the world. Hamburg is an impressive transportation port. The amount of business being done in Germany is infinite. The people of Germany see their country as “The Engine of Europe,” and have found that their presence is very important.

How does the media operate in your country?

The media is much less discerning when it comes to covering events that occur in Germany. They will openly lash out against politicians and leaders. Openly demanding answers and verbally abusing public figures is not rare in Germany. People want to know the truth and not been left wanting answers. Mark feels like the media is very different in Germany and for their culture it works well.

I would like to first thank Mark Paetz for taking time out of his busy schedule to meet with me. I enjoyed speaking with him and learned a lot about a foreign culture.  I appreciate the cultural differences more now and I have a stronger understanding of how media operates outside the states. Once again, thank you Mr. Mark Paetz.

Mark’s Georgia Southern Profile can be found here:

http://www.georgiasoutherneagles.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=18700&ATCLID=1353380

-Casey Sherwin

Advertisements