Knowing the Bulgarian culture is a basic requirement for success in the IT labour market in Bulgaria. Let’s start with the overall cultural characteristics scalling down to nowadays and the influences that the business exercises on the local culture.
The Lewis model
There is a well known antropological model of Lewis that classify
cultural differences in three dimensions:
In terms of lifestyle and perceptions Bulgarians might be much closer to Western world but we still keep out national caracteristics. You can find below how different are Bulgarians for western cultere.
Bulgarians are rather active than reactive as behaviour which put them in resonance with the westerns counties.
Once the common caracteristics identifyed, western people might be surprised to recognise that Bulgarians have much higher tentency toward multitasking and are more expressive in their emotions as manifested in other South cultures.
Historal and Geopolitical traces
The history and the geopolitical conditions in the country leave their inevitable trace in the people leaving in the country.
During the years the passive agression was moulded with years and I consider it as one of the main negative traits which shall be addressed, channalized and softened by the company policy.
From other part the limitations and restrictions highlighed another famous trait:
Bulgarians possess the rare gift to be early adopters.
In the book “Diffusion of Innovations” (Roger, 1962), the author emphasises that Early adopters are 13.5% of the population.
Nowadays those numbers might vary but still they are not the majority in the population. So think how your activities in Bulgaria could give you strategic advantage during the conception and introduction of new service or product.
The impact of the business
The early adopter’s behavour is often recognized by the business when introducing latest phone models or when looking at the vehicles in the streets. But it is rarely considered in the company culture.
When it is the case in an international company where there is visibility of how the business is developed accross the different localization, Bulgarians might feel both underestimated and jalous that latest trends are not deployed to their location. This might lead to unplaisant situations for the company, especially when combined centralized management and thus the passive agression phenomenon.
Having the open market and high dynamics in a given industry, the result might be a strong enough-is-enough attitude and pic in the turnover which find the company unprepared.
The last story is a scary example of how the not adapted strategy might influence the business abroad.
The Bulgarian culture is much more than what you read here. Even more insights come with the concrete business case.
Send a private message if you would like to talk about your concrete case and discuss on how to shape your experience.