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Ranking the future global manager characteristics and knowledge requirements according to UAE business managers' opinions

Belal Barhem (Business Administration Department, Abu Dhabi University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates)
Hassan Younies (School of Management, NYIT Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates)
Pamela C. Smith (The University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, Texas, USA)

Education, Business and Society: Contemporary Middle Eastern Issues

ISSN: 1753-7983

Article publication date: 23 August 2011




The purpose of this paper is to rank the importance of global manager characteristics according to the views of private and public leaders in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). In addition, it will establish the most important and in demand managerial knowledge for UAE managers over the next five years.


This study was conducted using a two‐part questionnaire developed by the researchers. The purpose of the 52‐item questionnaire is to assess managers' ability to work in an international business environment. The sample includes 180 managers, from different public and private organizations in the UAE. Based on prior research, the characteristics examined include the following: communication skills, adaptability, open‐mindedness to foreign environments, strong technical skills, stress management, ability to work well with others, social intelligence, and valuing diversity and multicultural teamwork. Factor analysis is used to analyze the importance of these global leader characteristics.


The study found that the sample of UAE managers feel the top five global manager skills are: strong desire to go overseas, specific knowledge of overseas culture, the ability to adapt to time differences, the capacity to deal with expatriate work assignments, and overseas experience. In terms of the future, computer skills, communication skills, knowledge of worldwide networks and contacts, knowledge of home culture, and the ability to understand cultural dynamics are the most important skills.


The results will help in defining the major characteristics of future global managers in the UAE and the Gulf Corporation Council region.



Barhem, B., Younies, H. and Smith, P.C. (2011), "Ranking the future global manager characteristics and knowledge requirements according to UAE business managers' opinions", Education, Business and Society: Contemporary Middle Eastern Issues, Vol. 4 No. 3, pp. 229-247.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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