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Before enter in a different country it is necessary for the business to do some researches in the different areas. It is important to be analyzed things such as laws, economic environment, competitors, eventual suppliers and one of the most important is to analyze the culture of this area. The cultural background of the people is important to be analyzed because in that way the products the business offers and their design can be reconsidered in order to fit and therefore, sell efficiently. And the main reason for analyzing and understanding the cultural background of the area, the business is entering in is simply because the people may become customers for the future.
Therefore, the Trompenaars’ 7 dimensions will be used to analyze carefully the socio-culture in UAE. The trompenaars’ 7 dimensions are being used all over the world and are globally recognized. Our consultancy team is therefore certain that is the perfect choice to analyze the background environment of United Arab Emirates, because not carefully analyzed market, simply means, failure.
The relation to nature
According to the Muslim holy book, the Koran, it is seen that the nature and the human are created by Allah, which underlines the equality between human and nature. Companies that follow such culture can be compared to outer-directed; therefore, they feel responsible for the well of the nature. However, that does not necessarily mean that they treat the nature as equal or as God would have wanted. For instance, in the Christian religion, it is said that God created both human and nature, but not every Christian believers would treat the nature as equal or protect “her”. And except this fact, the world has globalized which means that in a country can be met people from different religions.
On the other hand, an inner-directed culture believes that people are a part of the nature. But this fact does not make them more responsible to the nature but, because they believe that the nature is the one dictated their actions, therefore, according to them, these actions cannot be considered as danger to the nature.
Moreover, it is important to know what materials are used for the creation of the products. That could be found out by finding out the cultural background, because it says much, but this research can go deeper. It is important for IKEA to know if the customers in UAE prefer natural elements for their furniture or another kind of materials. By knowing this IKEA’s products can fit better in the market environment and sell more efficiently.
The relation to time
The relation to time is about the past, present and future.
When the development of Dubai began, the people wanted to keep the Islamic culture and were concerned how to pass the culture to the next generations. But by the years and the economic and infrastructural development has improved, and people from different countries have come, the vision for that has changed. Before entering in a new market with different culture, for managers, it is important to be aware and understand of how the people manage their time in this culture and, therefore, adjust to it.
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Universalism vs. Particulirism
The third point of the 7 dimensions of Trompenaars is about having defined to which group the Islamic culture belongs.
That might be hard to have it defined because, for instance, western people seen the Islamic culture more particular, but to others it might seem as more universal. No matter this fact, in UAE could be found more than only the Islamic culture. Different people from different countries have moved to UAE and, therefore, they would seem either more universal or particular.
For mangers is important before acting in the new area to consider and to adjust to the people with either universal or particular way of doing business.
Individualism vs. Communitarianism
When entering in a new business area with different cultural background it is important to know what the population in this country is. Knowing the orientation of people would prevent events such as doing everything on somebody’s own in a communitarian population or rewarding a individualist in the same society, both will have a negative effect.
What can be said for UAE as general is that the population there is supposed to be more communitarian oriented because of its Islamic background. However, as already mentioned several times in UAE could be met people from different countries with different cultural backgrounds.
Internal vs. External
The majority of people in the UAE have an internal locus of control and that lies again in their culture beliefs. For them Allah is the one that who dictate their fate, if something good happens it is because that person did well, if it is the other way around it is Allah’s punishment. But that could be also considered as External locus of control, because a person with truly internal locus of control would not believe that God is punishing him, but that he had failed on his own, or have won on his own. However, no matter the mix of cultures in UAE, all the people believe that the fate is in their own hands.
Neutral vs. Emotional
The Islamic culture is a culture in which emotions are more often expressed compared to other cultures. For instance, the European culture is also emotional culture on a very high level, but that does not necessarily mean that the emotions are expressed in the same way. Even if a certain culture is stated as Emotional, by going more southwards or northwards, a difference in the way of expressing emotions could be found. Regardless the fact how emotional the Islamic culture is, the people from this culture are often to not show everything and there are feelings that they hide for themselves, but the people from this culture are very open-minded and friendly.
Specific vs. Diffuse
A simple example can be given which will clearly state the difference between these two. In the specific cultures, the boss, for instance, is treating his subordinates in a certain business way, but if they meet outside the boss, could act and behave in a different way which does not show his higher level over this person in their workplace. On the other hand, it is the diffuse culture in which the boss stays the boss no matter where his subordinate meets him/her.
However, from the difference coming from all the cultures mixed in the UAE, could be met people from both specific and diffuse cultures. Therefore, the European, American or Chinese managers need to specify with what kind of people they will deal in their business environment and be aware of it.
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