In less than 30 years, Dubai has rapidly transformed from a traditional fishing village into a booming modern ‘westernized’ city, where expatriates form over 80% of the population of three million people. In this research, Emirati managers were surveyed regarding their perceptions of the rapid societal and workplace transformations in the UAE. The frameworks used were the cross-cultural theories of Hall, Hofstede and Trompenaars. The findings show that while there is an enduring traditional, collectivist and religious underpinning to Emirati managers’ attitudes and practices, there has been a significant shift towards westernized management attitudes and practices. Theoretical and practical implications of the research are discussed.