Individualism and Collectivism are two ways of thinking. Individualism is where people and their outcomes are mainly based on the internal acts or individual/self acts that one does. For example, success for failure may come from ones own individual efforts. Collectivism is the idea the efforts of a group or the effects of group/environment make up success or failure. This is a more interdependent look on life.
In the United States, most people are generally individualistic. They look out for themselves and their own success. They have a stronger sense self. One of the ways that you can see this is in the corporate world. People will do whatever is necessary to rise to the top. This includes making others look bad or taking opportunities away from others. While this is not ideal, a lot of Americans have this mentality that “no one can get in their way”.
In other countries, most people live in a more collective mindset. They do things as a group. They make decisions based on a family hierarchy. I have noticed this slightly in my husband’s family. The dad or grandpa has the final decision. I do think, however, that because of a newer generation, this way of thinking is a little old and most are steering away from it. Women are more involved in the family decision making. We can live as a more individual family unit. We don’t have to be so intertwined with either of our families.