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Planning for Culture Shock

Your Organization needs this Workshop!

Culture shock, or Cross-cultural adjustment is a "period of anxiety and confusion experienced when entering a new culture. It affects people intellectually, emotionally, behaviorally and physically and is characterized by symptoms of psychological distress.” - National Center for Biotechnology Information


Culture Shock refers to a stressful transition period when employees move from a familiar environment into an unfamiliar one. It occurs as a result of a mismatch between your expectations (about language, customs, artifacts and norms) and the reality you face. As globalization has become a predominant aspect of organizational life, employees are tasked with quickly learning how to relate and work with fellow employees and customers who operate in different cultures around the world. This workshop addresses the central aspects of culture that cause the most distress in expats and employees who frequent other countries. These include differences in a culture's expectations regarding timeliness, directness, power, and collective vs. individual behaviors. This workshop also helps employees prepare themselves mentally for coping with the many physical and emotional side-effects of being in a different culture.

2.5 hour and 1/2 day options available
in-person or Zoom


  • Take a survey that helps identify the central differences between their own cultural expectations and those of employees who work in or have moved from different countries.

  • Learn approaches for remaining mindful and non-judgmental in a diverse range of experiences that directly challenge their sense of right and wrong.

  • Understand the benefits of cultural competence, and identify areas they can address to create a compassionate and high performing workplace.

Based on


Dr. William Brendel (Bill) earned his doctorate at Columbia University and for over 20 years has facilitated the strategic transformation of leaders, teams, and organizations. As founder and principal consultant for the Transformative Learning institute, Bill enjoys helping a wide variety of organizations around the world in locations such as the U.S., Africa, China, Korea, and India. ​In addition to consulting, Bill is also an Assistant Professor at Penn State University, where he teaches graduate courses to aspiring consultants. He has also taught in programs at Columbia University, Georgetown, Texas A&M, Temple University, and the University of St Thomas.

In 2021, Bill received the Lisa Kimball Evolving the Field of Organization Development Award, one of the field’s highest honors, for his outstanding accomplishments in connecting diverse people and ideas to advance OD theory and applications worldwide. He is a trustee on the board of the Organization Development Network and leads the Organization Development Education Association.​​ Bill also shares his knowledge of organization development practices through his publications in books, articles, blogs, and popular press. He is frequently interviewed about current events that pertain to organizational strategy and culture. In 2017, Bill was interviewed by Variety Magazine, for his views on corporate culture and complicity surrounding the Harvey Weinstein scandal. He has written frequently for the Star Tribune, and blogs on cutting-edge approaches to strategic transformation on LinkedIn. Dr. Brendel has consulted and trained leaders in the organizations listed below:

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Dr. Bill Brendel

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