Erin Meyer

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Erin Meyer
Erin Meyer Headshot.JPG
Born (1971-08-22) August 22, 1971 (age 48)
Minnesota, United States
OccupationWriter, professor
Notable work
The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business

Erin Meyer (born August 22, 1971) is an American author and professor based in Paris.[1] She is most known for writing the 2014 book, The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business a study that analyzes how national cultural differences impact business.

Meyer is a professor at INSEAD, an international business school with campuses in France, Singapore and Abu Dhabi. She regularly speaks about cross cultural management and global teamwork.[2]

Personal life[edit]

Meyer was born and raised in Minnesota. She has spent most of her adult life in Europe and Africa. Currently, she lives in Paris with her husband and two sons.[3]


Meyer's interest in cross-cultural management dates back to her years as a Peace Corps volunteer, teaching English in Botswana. Later, she worked in HR as a director at McKesson, then at HBOC and Aperian Global. She teaches cross-cultural management at INSEAD, where she is the programme director for both the Managing Global Virtual Team programme as well as Management Skills for International Business, and lectures internationally.[4] She has studied, for over a decade, how people in different parts of the world build trust, communicate, make decisions and perceive situations differently, especially in the workplace.[3] She is also a regular contributor to Harvard Business Review.[5]

In 2013, she was selected as one of the top ten best business school professors by Business Life.[6]

The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business[edit]

Meyer wrote her first book, The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business in 2014. This book represents her collective research data from over thirty different countries.[7] In the book she provides a framework for evaluating different cultures and then offers strategies for improving international success.[8] She has identified 8 dimensions that capture most of the differences within and among cultures. Using this method, Meyer has also developed a self-assessment tool for Harvard Business Review, which helps in seeing where one falls on each of the eight scales.[9][10]

The book received positive reviews from critics and the media. The Huffington Post wrote that “whether you're a corporate or traditional diplomat, global traveler, government official, or passionate world citizen, this is the one book you should not miss.”[11] and Forbes wrote that “The Culture Map stands out as a practical book to explain and frame a very difficult collection of concepts that are increasingly relevant today.” [7] In an article about the book, Inc. called it “superb.”[12]

The Eight Scales[7]

Each of the eight scales is described as a continuum between the two ends which are diametric opposite or at least competing positions as follows:

  • Communicating – Are they low-context (simple, verbose and clear), or high-context (rich deep meaning in interactions)?
  • Evaluating – When giving Negative feedback does one give it directly, or prefer being indirect and discreet?
  • Leading – Are people in groups egalitarian, or do they prefer hierarchy?
  • Deciding – Are decisions made in consensus, or made top-down?
  • Trusting – Do people base trust on how well they know each other, or how well they do work together?
  • Disagreeing – Are disagreements tackled directly, or do people prefer to avoid confrontations?
  • Scheduling – Do they perceive time as absolute linear points, or consider it a flexible range?
  • Persuading – Do they like to hear specific cases and examples, or prefer holistic detailed explanations?

Awards and honors[edit]

  • 2017 – "Most Influential Thinker" award given to the top 30 thinkers to influence human resource practices by HR Magazine
  • 2017 – Thinkers50 - Selected as one of the 50 most influential business thinkers worldwide.
  • 2013 and 2014 – “Best Selling Case” for the case Leading Across Cultures at Michelin (The Case Center)
  • 2011 – “Best Case in Organizational Behavior” for the Case Leading Across Cultures at Michelin (ECCH)

External links[edit]


  1. ^ This column will change your life: are you wasting your warmth? The Guardian, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  2. ^ When in Japan ... drink till you fall over The Sunday Times, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  3. ^ a b Looking Another Culture in the Eye The New York Times, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  4. ^ How countries like the UAE can manage a diverse workforce The National, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  5. ^ Erin Meyer Thinkers50, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  6. ^ On the up: ten dons to watch Business Life, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  7. ^ a b c The Culture Map' Shows Us The Differences In How We Work WorldWide Forbes, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  8. ^ Why American Bosses Give More Positive Feedback Than Anyone Else In The World Business Insider, Retrieved on 28 Jun 2015
  9. ^ Assess Your Cultural Profile Harvard Business Review, Retrieved on 28 Jun 2015
  10. ^ A guide to (mis)communication, Financial Times, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  11. ^ If You're Global, You Need This Book Huffingtonpost, Retrieved on 28 June 2015
  12. ^ Why the Italians Hated Me, and Could Hate You, Too Inc., Retrieved on 28 Jun 2015