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Q2) For a foreign company operating in Saudi Arabia list any 5 aspects of Cross cultural sensitivity it should keep

in mind. Ans2) Definition: It indicates how much aware you are about the customs and culture of other countries. For running MNEs successfully, it is important to have thorough knowledge about culture of host countries. In the context of given case study related to Saudi Arabian culture, following are main aspects of cross cultural sensitivity, MNEs should take care of: Aspect 1: Saudi Arabian people view the home as private and regard questions about families as rude and invasive. Implications for MNEs: Because of limited access to all the members of the society, it becomes difficult to have effective market research for MNEs. It may lead to wrong strategic decisions for Saudi markets.

Aspect 2: Saudi men and women have culture specific attires e.g. women must wear abayas and men wear thobes. Implications for MNEs: As all women and men have uniform attire, it is not easy for MNEs to identify best people to approach for their product survey or primary research. MNEs have to be sensitive about the culture of Saudis and work out for other innovative ways to perform market research effectively.

Aspect 3: Women cant become engineers, architect or operate private law. But they can work in medicine, banking or hotel industry. Implications for MNEs: As Saudi Arabia has specific distinction for female work culture, MNEs has to ensure that they are following Saudi rules and customs strictly and do not employ women work force where it is not permitted by Saudi culture.

Aspect 4: At common work locations, men and women must have separate entrance and different sitting locations such that they cant see each other. Implications for MNEs: MNEs working in Saudi Arabia have to design their offices with special consideration of cultural aspects here. They also have to hire female managers especially (if Saudi culture allows) to attend issues or queries related to female work force.

Aspect 5: Saudi Arabia has least separation between state and religion. Implication for MNEs: As religion has very high influence on culture of Saudi Arabia, MNEs need to have knowledge about religious Dos and Donts applied to their business. E.g. serving alcohol and pork in restaurants is not permitted. During the holy month of Ramadan, when people are fasting during the day, hotels and restaurants can operate in the evening only. Aspect 6: Professional meetings in Saudi Arabia can take place at local cafes over casual cup of coffee and appointments seldom began on time. Implications for MNEs: For most of the western countries, time is money. They believe in punctuality and importance of time. But Saudi spends too much time in chit chat during meetings. And if managers of MNEs try to come to the main agenda of meeting straight away, they consider them as rude and impatient. Hence MNEs must educate their managers and work force going to work at Saudi Arabia about their meeting etiquettes and to be patient during the conversation.

Aspect 7: Selling of accident insurance is not permitted in Saudi Arabia as Saudis do not believe in accidents and they consider it an act of god only. Similarly Saudi banks do not charge or pay interest on savings or loan as it is forbidden in Islam. Implications for MNEs: MNEs operating in financial services in Saudi Arabia has to ensure that they are abide by the laws based on Saudi culture and restructure their operating strategies to generate income from other resources.