Earlier in my career, I traveled and worked in several countries in asia and europe, even married a foreign woman and hold a European passport. It was thrilling to work with foreigners in US offices and abroad. hearing about their exotic lifestyle. Something changed though…
some of the foreigners that I worked with at my last corporate gig were VERY cocky, arrogant even, and full of negative views about the USA. Im NOT defending the obvious foreign & domestic policy crap that Bush is dishing out, but it started getting very abrasive.
It was common to hear them criticising what was served in restaurants, correcting americans with their english (incorrectly considering the local slang in that area), bashing local trends and maybe rightfully foreign policy. One got pulled over for speeding, made a big deal about it at work that it was racisim - was he actually speeding? yes. They looked at local southerners as dangerous and “out to get them”… they were even calling a designer at a nearby Sony-Ercisson site “RN” short for “redneck,” why? because he lived outside of the city on big property so he could host afterparties for local bands - cool in my book, but because he was outside the city, “RN.”
Even recently, I was working with a french engineer from Les Arts et Metiers, the first thing he mentioned when he arrived was that he heard there was a french grocery in the area and he had to make sure to go over there so he could have “proper” food!!! he knew what he was saying…
Why were these italians spanish and french soo cocky? because they were making a ton of money compared to home and living an exciting life in another country. They were valued for their foreign lifestyle experience, but as designers they were inexperienced. maybe they even felt a little like outsiders, and decided to go ahead and pre-emtively segregate themselves - I don’t know.
All this happening while great designers with tons of awards from other divisions were all scared of being laid off, and plenty of american designers fresh out of school might have to take crappy jobs to gain experience. I felt it was a hostile work environment, and took another job with better dynamics between their workers.
…and, I gotta ask myself, all these foreign guys want to flee their homelands for the “riches” of america, which may or may not be a reality. Why don’t they invest in their own countries economies and markets? somebody has to do it, or does American have to make their countries OK for them?