The manager/boss is expected (and often the only authorized party) to make decisions. Titles and proximity to the Royal family play an important role and it helps the Emirati people place their colleagues or counterparts in the hierarchy, allowing them to give appropriate respect to superiors.
Background: The United Arab Emirates scores high on the Power Distance dimension (score of 90) which means that people accept a hierarchical order in which everybody has a place, and which needs no further justification. Hierarchy in an organization is seen as reflecting inherent inequalities, centralization is popular, subordinates expect to be told what to do and the ideal boss is a benevolent autocrat.
The strategy will stimulate innovation in seven sectors where innovation is key to excellence: renewable energy, transport, education, health, technology, water and space. Its first phase includes 30 national initiatives to be completed within three years. These include new legislation, innovation incubators, investment in specialised skills, private sector incentives, international research partnerships and an innovation drive within the government.
Background: According to the annual Global Innovation Index 2019, the UAE maintains its top position as the most innovative country in the Arab world. Part of the pillar 'United in Knowledge' of Vision 2021 focuses on innovative Emiratis building a competitive economy. There is an official government website dedicated to the pursuit of innovation. For more information visit https://www.government.ae/en/about-the-uae/the-uae-government/government...
Administratively, the UAE is a federation of seven emirates, each with its own ruler. The pace of local government reform in each emirate is set primarily by the ruler. Thus, any business done in the country will refer to each emirate.
Background: The federation was established on 2 December 1971. It is governed by a Federal Supreme Council made up of the seven emirs of Abu Dhabi, Ajman, Fujairah, Sharjah, Dubai, Ras al-Khaimah and Umm al-Quwain. One of the monarchs (traditionally the Emir of Abu Dhabi) is selected as the President of the United Arab Emirates.
Sensitive topics should be avoided at all cost. Criticizing an Arab business colleague or client is considered rude. Conflict and negative talk should be kept private, as public humiliation is considered extremely disrespectful. By raising one’s voice or shouting, one is considered as being very disrespectful.
Background: Emirati culture is based on Arabian culture and has been heavily influenced by Persian culture. Arabian and Persian inspired architecture is part of the expression of the local Emirati identity. Persian influence on Emirati culture is noticeably visible in traditional Emirati architecture and folk arts.
Some of the world's most luxurious hotels are based in the UAE. A massive construction boom, an expanding manufacturing base, and a thriving services sector are helping the UAE to diversify its economy. Nationwide, there is currently $350 billion worth of active construction projects (2020).
Background: The economy of the UAE is the second largest in the Middle East (after Saudi Arabia). The UAE has been successfully diversifying its economy, particularly in Dubai, but still remains heavily reliant on revenues from petroleum and natural gas, which continue to play a central role in its economy, especially in Abu Dhabi.
The United Arab Emirates is strategically located between Europe, Africa and Asia. Due to investor-friendly legislation, financial and tax environments, as well as an extensive double tax treaty (DTT) network and well-established infrastructure, the UAE is seen as an ideal business location for international audience.
Background: The estimated population of Dubai is 2,269,000 and 2 million of the people who live there are expats, which is approximately 80% of the local population. Dubai has the highest population of all the emirates in the UAE.
To open a business in UAE, religious practices and climate factors need to be considered such as long breaks during working hours are a common practice due to the heat during the day. Dubai professionals generally work 2 hours less during Ramadan (fasting month).
Background: Working days in Dubai can vary highly from one company to another. Working days are generally from Sunday to Thursday and many companies are open six days a week and close every Friday because the men have to perform the Friday prayers.
Trust is an important aspect and essential in building strong business relationships in the United Arab Emirates. Business cards should be given at the beginning of the meeting. When presenting your business card, always keep the Arabic side of your business card face up with an Arab client. This is considered a sign of respect in the United Arab Emirates.
Background: The United Arab Emirates, with a score of 25 on the Individualism dimension is considered a collectivistic society. This is manifested in a close long-term commitment to the group, be that a family, extended family, or extended relationships. The society fosters strong relationships where everyone takes responsibility for fellow members of their group.
The private sector in the UAE is taking the first steps toward an innovative society by building the skill-sets needed to innovate. Additionally, the startup ecosystem is being fueled by the appearance of startup investment funds and venture capital. Taken together, these things should help startups to flourish exponentially in the UAE and the wider MENA region.
Background: The UAE provides many innovation awards, including the Disruptive Innovator Awards, which aims to promote the spirit of innovation and to recognise the people and companies that are driving innovation in the UAE. In addition, The Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Business Innovation Award is a unique niche award that provides businesses in the GCC a distinctive benchmark for their business practices and performance in innovation.
UAE job-seekers value creativity when seeking to change jobs, so they can fast-track their career and personal growth. The UAE, in particular Dubai, still remains a sought after destination for highly skilled expatriate candidates with many enterprises looking to foreign markets to fill talent shortfalls. With 83% of HR directors confident that regional economic growth will continue at an accelerated pace, especially due to continued infrastructure development throughout the UAE, job creation and the drive to find top tier talents is anticipated to rise rapidly.
Background: The labour force of the United Arab Emirates is primarily made up of foreign temporary workers, most of whom come from the Indian subcontinent and other parts of the Arab World and Asia. There is a sizeable number of Westerners, the majority of them being British and Americans.
How diverse is the economy of the UAE? What cultural influences are present in the UAE culture? Try out the quiz and learn more about the United Arab Emirates!