Little known fact: Germans are not the most optimistic of people.
A lot of times, this was a pleasant relief seeing as the (pukingly) positive of some of our American counterparts could sometimes be a lot to deal with, since sincerity can then be hard to measure.
On a whole, Germans take awhile to warm up, which means if they are nice to you it isn't because they are blowing hot air up your bum. They genuinely mean it- which means when I got my first compliment from my first German boss, my tail might have wagged a bit- talk about the ease of employee motivation!
But, as with all things, there is an up and not so up side- sometimes, they can be such negative Nancys (no offence meant to our friend Nancy, though).
At my hamster wheel, this can mean that any measure of change or newness is met with pessimism that what is being done will actually work and the reward of new projects is often met with information about how hard it will be. A little bit of "Oh, we aren't getting laid off?!? What we will have to do now sounds like a lot of work!" can make an optimistic person ask themselves- WTF?