We had a most unusual and fascinating training in April. I had met Herman Heyman at a training several months before and asked if he could make a custom program for our team when he returned, which he was more than glad to do. We explored for two days questions like
- What are the unique features of Russian culture?
- What are the corresponding features of the Kingdom of God?
- How do they contrast, and what can we do about it?
- How do we build a ministry around the values that will strike the deepest blow to the Kingdom of Darkness as entrenched here?
We used a grid that comes from secular research on cultures, dividing them into 5 critical areas:
- Power distance: how far is it from decision maker to the commoner?
- Uncertainty avoidance: how much does a culture build systems to keep from dealing with uncertainty?
- Individual vs. collective thinking: how much is it each man for himself or sink or swim together?
- Masculine vs. Feminine culture: is there a significant sex role difference, or are they largely obliterated?
- Short-term vs. long-term thinking: do we solve today’s crises, or do we plan for the next generation?
As you might imagine, we asked more questions that we answered, but we have a working grid of Russian culture that we can now apply to any and all work we do. Oh, and do you want to know how Russia fares?
- Russia has one of the greatest power distances worldwide.
- Russia is near the top in wanting to avoid uncertainty. This explains complex bureaucratic structures.
- Much more towards collective thinking. Russia is more of an Eastern culture in this sense.
- Highly masculine culture, yet women rule the home, though they don’t like it at all.
- Totally short-term thinking.