UAE Career: How to Build a Career in the UAE

It’s no secret that the United Arab Emirates is one of the most popular destinations in the world for career-minded individuals. With its booming economy and diverse range of opportunities, it’s no wonder that people from all corners flock to this desert nation in search of a better life.

The GDP of the UAE is one of the largest in the world, considering its size. It’s also growing fast, making it a ripe choice for people who want to start a career overseas.

But for those looking to start their careers in the UAE, you should know a few things before moving. In this article, we’ll outline some of the most critical steps you need to take to make your dream career a reality in the UAE. So whether you’re already living in Dubai or Abu Dhabi or just starting to think about making a move, read on for some essential advice.

Start Early

UAE has some of the best schools in the world. These schools include the American University of Sharjah, Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi, and New York University Abu Dhabi.

If you’re still in school or university, consider spending a semester abroad at one of these esteemed institutions. You will get a world-class education and make valuable connections that could help you get your foot in the door when you graduate.

In addition to getting a head start on your career by studying at a top UAE school, you can also begin interning while still in school. Many companies offer internship programs specifically for students, so take advantage of this opportunity to gain real-world experience.

You might even be able to land a full-time job offer before you graduate!

A local Arab student studying

Learn the Local Language

Although English is widely spoken in the UAE, learning some basic Arabic will give you a leg up in the job market.

Not only will it help you stand out from other candidates, but it will also make your day-to-day life much easier. From ordering coffee to haggling for souvenirs, being able to speak Arabic will make your life in the UAE much more enjoyable.

And don’t worry, learning Arabic doesn’t have to be complicated or tedious. Plenty of resources are available to help you understand the basics, and you’ll pick up the language quickly by immersion. Some great apps you can use to learn the local language are Babbel and Arabic Pod 101.

Learn About the Local Culture

The UAE is primarily a Muslim country, so it’s essential to respect local customs and culture.

You must be observant of the dress code, mindful of religious holidays, and avoid offensive language or behavior. When in doubt, err on the side of caution to avoid offending anyone.

It’s also a good idea to learn about the business culture in the UAE. For example, many businesses are family-owned, so building personal relationships is key to doing business here.

You should also be prepared for a more hierarchical structure than you might be used to. Generally, older men occupy the top positions in companies, while younger women are often relegated to support roles.

That being said, there are plenty of opportunities for career growth in the UAE regardless of your age or gender. You can succeed in this vibrant and rapidly-growing country with hard work and dedication.

Find a Mentor

Finding a mentor is one of the best ways to get ahead in your career. A mentor can offer guidance, advice, and support as you navigate the working world.

In the UAE, having a mentor who knows the ins and outs of doing business there can be beneficial. They can introduce you to the right people, help you avoid potential pitfalls, and give you insider tips to help you succeed.

If you don’t know anyone who can serve as a mentor, plenty of programs and organizations can connect you with one. For example, the Abu Dhabi Department of Economic Development offers a mentorship program for Emirati entrepreneurs.

There are also numerous networking events and business forums where you can meet potential mentors. Attend as many of these events as possible to maximize your chances of making valuable connections.

Keep in Touch With Loved Ones

Being homesick is the worst thing you can experience when starting a career in another country. Thankfully, there are now various ways you can keep in touch with loved ones.

If you’re a gift-giver, you can now easily send packages back home. In addition, there are now packages specifically made for these things, which can also help you on your way back home. For example, if you live in the Philippines, you can use a balikbayan box in the UAE, so your loved ones can quickly receive your gifts. It’s also a great option if you’re planning to come back home as it’s much cheaper and has more room for your items.

You can also stay connected with loved ones via video call apps like Skype or Facetime. These apps are free to download and use, so you can call your family and friends as often as you want without breaking the bank.

Deciding to start a career in the UAE is a big one. But if you’re prepared for what’s ahead, you can set yourself up for success. By following the tips listed above, you can start a successful career in the UAE without fearing being homesick in the future.

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