UAE business etiquette In order to properly build a business in any country, first of all, you need to get acquainted with its culture. Culture includes the diversity of all aspects of society. Religious views, gender perception, norms of social communication and much more – all this should be studied, at least superficially, so as not to get into an awkward situation and not harm yourself and your business.
Everyone knows that business in the UAE is an excellent opportunity for professional and commercial growth for entrepreneurs of all directions and any budget. To properly organize and conduct business in the United Arab Emirates, you need to clearly understand where you are, what rules you obey and how you interact with people around you.
Religion in the UAE
The United Arab Emirates has an official state religion – Islam, which professes more than 80% of the population living on their territory. It is known that the Islamic religion very carefully regulates almost all spheres of life of a believer. Such an abundance in Islam and its sources of norms prescribing how to behave in a particular situation determines the interpenetration of religion and legislation. Many laws of the UAE are formulated on the basis of and in accordance with Islamic canons. You need to know about this, since business in the United Arab Emirates is subject to very strict legislative rules. Most of them have their roots in Islamic tradition.
From the rules of conduct that are formed by the Islamic religion, a ban on the use of alcohol in public places can be cited as an example. You can drink alcohol only in specially designated places:
- night clubs;
In addition, the sale of alcohol is carried out exclusively in specialized stores.
The holy month of Ramadan and special rules
Particular attention should be paid to behaviour during the holy month of Ramadan for Muslims. Since at this time, Muslims of the country refuse to eat and drink in the daytime, many catering establishments are closed, and the process of eating food, for example, by tourists, should be carried out in certain places.
A little about hands
Unexpected for many visitors is the fact that the left hand in Islam is traditionally considered to be “unclean”. That is why in the course of communication, including business, it is customary to use only the right hand, for example, for shaking hands, transferring something to the interlocutor or partner at a business meeting or dinner.
Of great importance for tourists are also some of the prohibitions arising from Islam related to photographing. It is totally unacceptable to photograph Muslim men and women. In addition, for security reasons, a ban has been imposed on photographing public institutions.
Greetings in the UAE
In general, there are a number of separate rules of etiquette regarding greeting in the Emirates. For example, a handshake should begin with the owner of the house or a person with a higher status. Shaking hands with a woman is not permissible, except when women in the UAE extend their hand first.
Guest and his status
In addition to welcoming and farewell gestures, at the moment when you are in an Arab house, remember that in the presence of the owner it is not worth considering a thing for a long time. Without a doubt, in a real Arab house you will find a lot of things worthy of your attention, however, such behaviour is fraught with the fact that the owner will be forced to give you a thing that deserves your attention. To refuse in this case is to be impolite. When choosing, for example, gifts for a business partner from the UAE, keep in mind that Arabic etiquette requires that the gift be generous, but not wasteful, on the one hand. Find the right solution and follow the rules of etiquette – your chances of a successful outcome of negotiations increase.
Companies in the UAE, as a rule, are headed by one person, and he also makes the majority of managerial and organizational decisions. Moreover, all relations between the leader and subordinates are based solely on a respectful and friendly manner of communication.
As a rule, business etiquette is especially important during negotiations. In the UAE, it is customary to arrange a meeting in person or by phone, but in any case in advance. The document is not an official e-mail, so it is better to give preference to private messages.
When it comes to business in the UAE, remember a slightly different work schedule: Friday and Saturday are days off, and the workweek starts on Sunday.