Business in the UAE: Eastern Key Aspects of Success

11:37 pm  |  17.12.2023

Doing business in the East requires a revision of ideas about time. The average Arab “minute” is 80 seconds, which is three times the European perception of time. Tasks that seem doable in a month in the West may require two or even three months in the East. Flexibility and patience become key success factors.

The key to doing business in the East is to suppress feelings of superiority. It is necessary to avoid both external and internal manifestations of this feeling. Stereotypes about cultural superiority must be eliminated, and partnership and respect for local culture must be fundamental principles.

Respect and Teaching

The East values respect and a willingness to learn. An approach based on the mutual exchange of knowledge and experience is more effective. Avoid the teacher’s tone and look down on others, preferring partnership and exchanging ideas.

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Don’t forget that the East has something to teach the Western world. Indian cinema and IT services from India are examples of successful experiences that can serve as lessons. Businessmen should be open to absorbing technological and cultural innovations from the region.

Equal Partnership

Successful business in the East requires the creation of equal partnerships. Avoid mentoring and looking down. Maintain a dialogue where each party can share knowledge and experience.

Business in the East is not only strategy and tactics but also a special cultural sensitivity, which becomes the key to successful interaction and long-term partnership.

Embracing Lifestyle Diversity

Start by recognizing that there is no one-size-fits-all way of life, and every culture has its values. Irritation for some may be commonplace for others. Be prepared to adapt and understand differences.

Avoid discussions of history and politics, as these topics are often perceived differently in different cultures. Focus on common topics that can strengthen your connection and avoid minefields.

Family Values and Business

Personal relationships play a key role. Remember that long conversations and establishing connections in the East and South are necessary to achieve success. Pay attention to discussing family and children, as these topics are essential.

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Respect for family values is an important tradition. If your loved ones are involved in the business, this creates additional bonuses.

Be prepared to talk about your family and show interest in your partner’s family aspects.

Patience and Large Conversations

Be patient and willing to have extensive conversations. Conversations in the East often take a long time, and a long, leisurely conversation is perceived as a valuable experience. Be prepared to devote time to meetings and communication.

Eastern cultures value closeness in space and perceive it as a manifestation of openness and reliability. Be open to physical intimacy in communication, avoiding creating overly personal space.

Avoid displaying feelings of superiority. In the East, it is important to create an atmosphere of mutual respect and equality. Focus on partnerships, knowledge sharing, and respect for diversity.

Business in the East is not only an exchange of goods and services but also an exchange of cultural values and respect. A deep understanding of local traditions and a willingness to adapt are key to successful interactions.

Culinary Experiences and Cultural Respect:

  • Experiment with Local Cuisine: Try a variety of dishes and express your impressions. Show respect for local cuisine, even if you don’t like it.
  • Avoid Offense: Take special care not to offend local values. Refrain from expressing negative opinions about local cuisine or customs.

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Business Negotiations and Business Features:

  • Warning from Muddy Intermediaries: Be careful when dealing with intermediaries who promise acquaintance with high-ranking individuals. Check information and avoid transactions that seem suspicious.
  • Meet Local Influencers: Networking with local leaders and influencers can be key to a successful business. Participate in social events and cultural events.
  • Long Tea Parties and the End of the Business Lunch: In the East, business meetings often begin with a tea party. Be prepared for long and leisurely conversations. It is important to be patient and respectful of local customs.

End of the Tea Party:

  • Stage of Praise and Respect Expressing Thanks: At the end of the meeting, be sure to express gratitude for the hospitality and time spent together.
  • Praise the Hosts: Praise the culinary treats and hospitality of the hosts. Show appreciation for culture and traditions. Wish to Meet Again: Express your hope for future meetings and continued business relations.

Following these points will help create a positive impression and strengthen business relationships in the East.

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