Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to highlight the fact that investors in the Asian region are shifting their investments from one country to another, in this case, from India to Dubai, in the real estate and infrastructure industry. While countries compete to get investments, competing “values” at the workplace may also influence in attracting the investments. This paper makes use of competing values framework (CVF) to understand this phenomenon and to provide research evidence about differences in workplace cultures in India and Dubai. It is proposed that differences in workplace cultures, besides other non-cultural factors, may influence this phenomenon of shifting of investments between the two countries. Design/methodology/approach: It is an inductive study to investigate why investors are shifting investments from India to Dubai in the real estate and infrastructure industry. This paper further explores literature to support our claim that workplace cultural differences may be responsible for the shifting investments. Next, this paper identifies the instrument called organizational culture assessment instrument using CVF to collect data and plot the cultural profiles at the two country sites. Findings: The findings suggest that workplace cultures in the two country locations are different and could be a reason for Indians to shift their investments to Dubai in the real estate and infrastructure sector. There are both cultural and non-cultural factors, which are responsible for the shift in global investments. Research limitations/implications: The study has several research implications. It highlights the possibility of a shift in global investments because of cultural and non-cultural differences at the workplace. Specifically, it provides evidence that workplace cultures are different in the two countries and could play a role in the competitiveness of firm and countries. This finding has implications for research in the fields of both strategy and international business.However, this is a preliminary study to explore a recent phenomenon and uses data from only one organization in two countries. Therefore, this paper accepts this as a limitation; however, it creates a potential for further exploration in many directions for future research. Practical implications: Managers in multinational firms have to deal with subsidiaries in different countries with different cultures. While culture is not traditionally considered an important factor, the study highlights that it may have far-reaching influences on financial decisions. Therefore, managers need to understand cultures and create strategies to deal with diverse cultures. Originality/value: It is perhaps the first attempt to investigate the workplace culture across India and Dubai in the real estate and infrastructure industry through empirical evidence. Further, in the context of shifting global investments across the two countries, it highlights the importance of workplace cultures towards economic and financial implications for countries in the Asian subcontinent. © 2019, Emerald Publishing Limited.