Using Army Recruitment Ads to Develop Cross-Cultural Skills

Terracotta ArmyLooking for exercises and activities for practicing cross-cultural skills? We at Cultural Detective emphasize that intercultural competence takes practice, is a practice, and cross-training with alternative approaches can help develop strong skills. Here is an approach that I personally never would have thought of, but it is really powerful!

Marion Burgheimer, a very active contributor to our Cultural Detective community, recently shared with us a selection of army recruitment ads from around the world. “Army recruitment ads?!” was my initial thought. I’ve used advertising clips, movie clips, but I for one never would have thought of this approach. Yet, Marion is based in Israel, and for me it makes perfect sense that this approach would be born from that experience. Take a look at the ads and you’ll see what I mean. The differences are astounding.

Marion tells us these ads are terrific tools for learning the skills for discerning what is important to the people with whom we live, work, and in other ways collaborate. The videos are embedded below.

Thank you for your generosity, Marion! Together we can enable equitable, sustainable cross-cultural collaboration!

Activity Instructions:

  1. Have students or participants view the films, then complete one side of a Cultural Detective Worksheet, in order to practice discerning the values at play in the ads, and link them with the messages and wording those values stimulate. Both are important skills that require practice.
  2. As a second step, encourage users to reference the corresponding CD Values Lenses, to see if they provide further clues about and depth of insight into the national values at play in the ads. You can find those Values Lenses in the Cultural Detective Online system.

Australia: (embedding is disabled for this one; just click through)






Please share with us some of the values you see inherent in these various recruitment ads!

7 thoughts on “Using Army Recruitment Ads to Develop Cross-Cultural Skills

  1. This is great idea Marion! Thank you for writing it up Diane. The differences are fascinating.
    I looked at ads from the two countries I know best and they do seem to reflect values that are highly regarded in the respective countries.

    This Irish Defence Forces recruitment video focuses on adventure, helping others, having good times with mates and peacekeeping (rather than warfare); all things that are important in Ireland:
    German armed forces advertising tends to focus on getting qualifications, gaining skills, also peacekeeping rather than warfare, helping civilians, driving fast 😉

    Here is a playlist from Hans Henrik Juhl of army recruitment videos that can be found on YouTube:


  2. Pingback: Intercultural Resources | The Cultural Detective Newsletter: Clues to Intercultural Effectiveness Tips, Techniques and Resources

  3. פרסם את זה מחדש ב-Intercultural Workshops for International Companiesוהגיב:
    לפני כמה שנים פרסמתי כאן פוסט על השפעת תרבות על עיצוב מודעות דרושים.
    Dianne Hofner Saphiere the founder of Cultural Detective
    יצרה מהפוסט והפרסומות, כולן פרסומות לגיוס לצבאות בעולם, משחק שמאפשר ללמוד על תרבויות ומאפיינים בין תרבותיים
    אני ממליצה לקרוא, וכמובן לשחק וללמוד בצורה חוויתית.
    תודה רבה דיאנה.


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