Recently I was in Paris for a week with my husband and a group of friends. We’d all been there before, so this trip was infinitely more relaxing because we didn’t feel the pressure to rush from museum to museum and sight to sight just to say that we did (I confess, that’s my usual approach when I visit a place for the first time). We had no to-do list, other than to shop (okay, that was on the women’s to-do list), eat, and drink French wine until we dropped.

Every night went something like this: Eat around 9, and linger over dinner until 11 or 11:30. Then someone would say innocently, “Hey, we’re on vacation (with our kids a continent away), so we might as well stop by a club for a nightcap.” Even though it was during the week, these clubs were packed, with lines out the door. We’d always end up partying like rock stars from midnight into the wee hours of the morning. So the days weren’t quite as productive as we’d hoped, as we usually slept in late (such an indulgence for this mom with a baby at home) and wouldn’t venture out until lunch. How, we wondered, did our fellow clubgoers — all locals, it seemed —get up and go to work every morning?

We were staying with an American businessman assigned to an American company in Paris to help their Continental customers learn to do business successfully in the United States. He confirmed that most businesspeople start their mornings later than Americans do, but work later into the night. True, many of those late-night clubgoers probably weren’t daytime executives, but I’m still impressed at their stamina.

Our American friend in Paris also confirmed that he battles a few other cultural differences in his role, ones that are examined at large in this issue’s Business feature, “Growth Generation”. The story takes on a growing trend that has cultural, legal, and, of course, business implications. Writer Barry Lynn looks at the current entrepreneurial efforts of young Europeans and whether this movement, which springs from an American style of doing business, can work on the Continent.

Check it out, as well as the rest of the online edition of the magazine — you’ll find it’s packed with trends such as these. Let us know what you think at our new e-mail address,

Elaine Srnka