All countries have what the Japanese call a komumin-sei, a sort of "national personality" that I write about every so often, and once I caught an interesting TV show that included a fun story that touched on this topic. A ship carrying people from different countries starts to take on water, and the captain needs to get each person to jump in the sea immediately. To the American he says, "If you jump in, you'll be seen as a hero," which makes the American man jump in right away. (From the Japanese point of view, Americans seem to have a hero complex.) To the British man the captain says, "If you jump in, you'll be seen as a gentleman." To the Italian: "If you jump in, you'll be popular with women." The German man is told, "You must jump in now, it's the rule," while the captain tells the French man, "Please do not jump in the water." (So Germans are responsive to following rules and French people will always do the opposite of what they're told?) The trivia question the two teams had to answer was, what did the captain say to the Japanese passenger to get him to jump in the water? To see the answer, highlight the following text with your mouse cursor. The answer is, they told the Japanese man that "everyone else is jumping in the water," which made the Japanese passenger happy to do so, too.
I googled kokuminsei and got this pic. I am totally posting it.