Doing Business as a Foreigner in Oman
Compared to other places, Oman is a quite easy location in which to do business, no matter if you are a local or a foreigner. How do we know that? This is actually the result of Oman’s favorable ranking in international business surveys. Furthermore, this country was ranked 71st out of not more and not less than 190 countries in the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business rankings for this year. There are lots of chances that foreigners who do business here primarily deal with other foreigners in a familiar and Westernised business context, but certainly with a totally distinct Arabic business flavor.
When it comes to business culture, it is essential to understand that this state which is without a doubt more liberal than its neighbours, remains an Islamic country. Foreigners must certainly remain respectful and sensitive of the big influence that these religious beliefs have on social life. The business culture of Oman can be termed typically Arabic and personal relationships between business associates are very common and extremely important. There is no doubt that businessmen from here will always choose to work only with people they are familiar with and who they feel they can completely trust. Any foreigner who wants to invest here must remain patient during initial meetings with the new business partners. Getting impatient is actually a negative thing that will surely affect your relationship with your partner. Keep in mind a very important detail. Business relationships in this state are worth the investment of energy and time at the same time.
Another important thing that anyone who wants to do business in Oman must know is that the management style from here is hierarchical. All the decisions are made clear and at the top level, and very strict and direct instructions are given to staff to follow. Business etiquette here actually reflects a very close and friendly relationship between personal and professional life. Therefore, foreigners, investors should prepare for long and personal discussions with their business partners. Verbal commitments are extremely serious here and if you promise something then you must do everything you can in order to keep your promise. If you ever have any sort of issue to raise with a colleague, then this should e discussed privately.
In terms of meetings what any foreign investor must know is that most meetings will be quite long and also subject to personal digressions. Punctuality is always expected and very important. Expats must not expect Arabic partners to follow suit. If there is an agenda then is must definitely be typed out in Arabic and English as well. When you have a business meeting then you must make sure you dress conservatively and remain as patient as possible in case the meeting’s agenda becomes abandoned. What we also advise you is that in order to not feel lonely while you’re doing business in Oman, you should hire an escort. Believe it or not, you will be able to find escorts in Muscat for example. Even they are quite hidden you will certainly manage to find one. Keep in mind that escorts can also keep you company not only offer you sexual services.