On the front page of today’s Wall Street Journal, we see French President Emmanuel Macron’s hand on German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s knee. A online WSJ article is titled, “Merkel and Macron got along so well in Paris that a 100-year-old woman thought they were married.” The two looked affectionately at each other and held hands during a weekend in Paris at a World War I commemorative event.
Physical touching in U.S. companies is generally frowned upon and could inspire sexual harassment claims. But in Europe, the cultural norms and laws are different.
An image search for “Merkel and Macron” shows embraces and touching throughout the years.
Describe the cultural differences from your own experience and knowledge.
What’s your personal view of this type of touching at work among colleagues?