I had brunch with Graybeard the other day, at a place popular with Americans. They serve big American breakfasts on the weekends, and that is always a Good Thing. Mmmm… Big Brain Scramble!
After we ordered the waitress brought us our utensils and napkins. Exactly two napkins. Graybeard, as you might guess, has a long, gray beard, and he likes extra napkins to keep it clean. He made a comment about how cheap the Czechs are, only bringing one napkin per person, but on reflection I think he’s missing something about Czech culture.
The czechs as a group are craftsmen. Do not confuse this with industrious or efficient, but in the little daily tasks most czechs I know like things to be just so. Rather than provide some napkins, the waitress will carefully count out the correct number. Not out of cheapness, but out of rightness.
I doubt this attitude would carry over to a repetitious task like working in a manufacturing plant. There’s little opportunity for craftsmanship there, and other czech habits, like drinking beer with breakfast, would probably reduce productivity. Where I would hire a czech would be for something that required skill and patience, but the deadlines could be a little looser. Perhaps manufacturing high-end musical instruments, or glass blowing.