How to Build a Successful Business in the UAE

How to Build a Successful Business in the UAE


The UAE is fast becoming a popular option for aspiring entrepreneurs and investors. The region makes the prospect of starting a business here even more enticing by offering applicants the opportunity to complete all the requirements within a week.

Other than complying with the legal requirements and trade licenses in the UAE, there are other aspects that can help either make or break your business. Here are a few things to keep in mind when planning to Business Setup in the UAE.

  1. Modesty goes a long way

For the people in Dubai and the rest of the UAE, religion means everything. It is so rooted that Islam affects both their personal and business lives.

When working with people in the Middle East, always dress modestly. The same rule applies regardless of your gender.

What you wear gives Emiratis an impression of your character and personality. To be safe, go for a formal and professional look. This means suits and ties for men attending meetings.

One tip when it comes to interacting with people from the opposite gender: wait for the other person to make the first move. Never shake their hand unless they extend it first. Also, only use your right hand.

  1. Build informal relationships before business

Personal relationships are important for locals. Most will look into building friendships and more casual relationships before going into business with the individual.

If you are planning to do business with an Emirati, be prepared to do a lot of socializing and small talk. Ask about the person’s health and family first. Wait for the other party to initiate any talk about business.

For Emiratis, there is more to small talk than just courtesy. It gives them an idea of what you are like beyond business. Your behavior and ability to make small talk will help them determine if they want to work or do business with you.

  1. Find out to people who are in the same business

Most industries in the UAE are small so personal relationships are key to doing well in the region. Whether it is a group meets up, a conference, or a trade fair, go out there and make you known. Have a business card ready to hand out to potential contacts. Have one side translated to the Arabic language to make it easier for Emiratis to get in touch with you.

Talk to many people and stay in close contact as much as possible. This will develop your skills while also growing your list of potential leads, clients, and suppliers. Because of the size of the industries, being recommended by word-of-mouth is the more popular way of getting discovered.

  1. Understand the culture

When doing business in the UAE, learning to live with the heat is expected. However, there is more to life here than just the scorching temperatures. Take advantage of the wide array of activities that the locals enjoy – dune racing, camping out in the desert, and more.

As with living in any other foreign country, try to learn the language. Locals will appreciate your efforts and it will give you a better understanding of the people.

Do as much research as you can before setting up a shop in Dubai or in the UAE. By studying the region, you will have an idea of the business conditions and potential issues that you may encounter along the way.

If you are mulling over the idea of a Business Setup in the UAE, you have the option of doing the research yourself or hiring a consultancy Business. By having a consultant, you can save time, resources and avoid the embarrassment of making errors.

The local government is constantly introducing more initiatives and incentives to draw more people into investing or Business Setup in the UAE.