Five things that surprized me about jobs in America

OK, I spelt the suprized with a z on purpose 🙂

You know, I had worked in India in a pretty International Company, so I was used to working with people from round the world. Yet when I joined work and started working, I did find a few things surprising and a bit of a culture shock. Here they are:

  • People are pretty free about speaking their minds, even in the South. They do take freedom of speech seriously, and are more confident about questioning authority or saying no
  • As a ‘minority’ and a woman, I had to work twice or maybe three times as hard to get heard. People would glaze over what I was saying in meetings and sometimes pause to listen, but then ignore me
  • People are very conscious about being politically correct. HR has many rules regarding this. I had never seen rules like this in India, I think we are more politically incorrect there. By law, they cannot comment on your clothes, marital status etc in interviews
  • People found me more credible if I said I was an engineer or doctor or related to IT somehow. Proving credibility in a ‘business role’ was more difficult!
  • People had a very warped view of India (though there are many exceptions to this) and asked pretty funny and ignorant questions.

But overall, I like working here and I think the struggles and triumphs of mommies are pretty universal. 

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