Candidate to Saudi Arabia

7 July 2016

Actually, there are two main actors who are facing problems in expanding new market in Saudi Arabia. The first one is Mrs. Svendson, the Human Relations Manager of Natural Thirst Killer who in charge of selecting new Sales Manager for rapidly growing Saudi Arabian drink market. And the second actor is those candidates who are soon will be picked to be a Sales Manager in Saudi Arabia. Each of those actors faces different challenging problems. We conclude that Mrs. Svendson is confronted with three main issues. These issues will be ranked in order of importance.

The first and most important issue is selecting the right manager, which consists of a main challenge—cultural differences. This different is not easy to be overcome, since that there are restrictions and regulations in Saudi Arabia affecting the lives of manager and his or her family a lot. For example, there is an inequality of gender in Saudi Arabia and an education for children of 16+ is impossible. Wrong selection of manager could lead to a fatal risk, such as problems in the relationship with Arabian consumers.

There are also personal traits required to be a right manager, such as warm and relaxed personality, the ability to work with different cultural background so he or she can understand and adjust, and a plus point if he or she has experience with different cultures. The second issue that Mrs. Svendson is facing is the personal relationships. This means a need of a local partner to cope with local knowledge and extremely high taxes and a guarantee for financial and legal matters. And the last issue is about understanding the market.

Natural Thirst Killer has to pay attention, for example for the fact that premium products are favored in Saudi Arabia, and 50% of the population is under the age of 17. Meanwhile, the future Sales Manager who will be picked from the candidates faces three issues in expanding business in Saudi Arabia. Those issues are different life, different culture, and different business conduct. We consider those to be problems because cultural differences and building relationships are important issues that will be faced by every manager in every company, in this case by managers who will run the company in Saudi Arabia.

Many foreign managers fail in Saudi Arabia because they can not survive in terms of the cultural difference. We rank them that way because, the very first thing to be concerned about is selecting the most suitable manager who is able to survive in a highly cultural difference. The second thing to be concerned about is finding the right local partner, because without the right partner you can not do business in Saudi Arabia. After having a right manager and local partner, he or she needs to understand the market in Saudi Arabia and how their product fits in it.

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