Israeli Business Law Firms, Dubai and the UAE

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With the global COVID 19 crisis seemingly more under control, the airlines have revved their engines and commercial flights have resumed, if even in a reduced capacity than before COVID. Executives and their management teams from Israeli business law firms travel to Dubai, at the UAE (United Arab Emirates) to conduct face to face meetings with prospective partners in cutting edge deals that will almost certainly ensure economic recovery after this black period of quarantines and lock-downs. For starters, revenues will inevitably increase for all kinds of taxes and tariffs connected to visiting Dubai. Israeli and Arab business law firms in Israel and Dubai, UAE, undoubtedly see a flurry of activity at this time and endless hours are put into negotiating agreements with multiple companies.

  • Israeli Business Law Firms, Dubai and the UAE

Any Israeli business law firm involved in brokering any agreement would do well to familiarize itself with local Dubai, UAE, customs. For all the progress the small country has made in regard to technology, it is steeped in ancient, antiquated, time honored traditions, folk wisdom, superstition and hubris. Stepping on toes is easier than one might think and the smile with the extended arm for a western style handshake does not necessarily mean the same thing for both parties.

  • Power Distance, Israeli Business Law Firms, Dubai and UAE

If, say, a western cultured, Israeli attorney or businessman goes to Dubai, he might think that if he makes eye contact and relaxes his shoulders, in body language that is meant to convey equanimity, the other side will respond in kind. The westernized mentality dictates that people or companies be judged on merit. An Israeli lawyer and Israeli business law firm, that brokers any deal with Dubai and the UAE, should consider the following:

Based on Hofstede’s Value of Dimensions, an anthropological tool, which compares cultures and the interactions between and among them, the UAE is aware of and observes the traits of various cultures.

  • Power Distance
    This refers to the relationship between ranks, such as upper management, lower management, supervisors and subordinates. Much depends on how the rank and file, to coin a military term, react to their higher-ups. The Power Distance Index (PDI) is used in some cultures to measure the acceptance of power as established between those with more power and those with the least power.

    • Five traits of power distance:
      • Power Distance – as explained above
      • Uncertainty Avoidance – 
      • Masculinity vs. femininity
      • Time Orientation
      • Individualism vs. Collectivism

According to the traits listed above, nations are ranked on their adherence to hierarchical stations and roles. The higher the rank number, the more traits of high power distance are exhibited in the corresponding countries. 

The United Arab Emirates, UAE, scored 90 for high power distance, high uncertainty avoidance, and masculinity. This means that the UAE upholds hierarchical power and that in professional settings, managers are respected, no questions asked. As a point of reference, the United States scored 40 for power distance, since American managers want their subordinates to give their input in many situations.

Israel scored 13 points because of its egalitarian mindset, belief in independence, equal rights, higher ups who are accessible to all and management practices that empower. Among Israelis, respect is something you earn by proving your expertise. Workplaces are more informal and all are on a first name basis. In fact, Israeli law firm employees expect to be consulted.

These cultural disparities should not be ignored and for the purpose of facilitating negotiations, the Dubai, UAE restrictions would have to be considered in all manner of business.

  • Any Israeli business law firm, to work with parties in Dubai, UAE, would be wise to keep the above cultural differences in mind, when wording binding documents. Israeli attorney David Page, licensed in both, the United States and Israel is the right legal representative who you want on your side.


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