You don’t want to be late for work when the boss does a surprise early morning inspection. The Dubai government is no exception.

His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai visited several local government offices and videos of his visit to the empty desks quickly went viral on social media.

Globalo has previously reported on Sheikh Mohammed’s innovative government. Read about his new Ministers for Tolerance and Happiness here.

A photo posted by Khalifa Saeed (@khalifasaeed) on

  • The inspections started at 7:30AM, and the awkward empty office moments were caught on tape and posted to Instagram.
  • His Highness visited at least four offices: the Dubai Economic Department, Dubai Land Department, Dubai Municipality, and Dubai Airport.
  • In one of the videos, Sheikh Mohammed casually walks around an empty office and flips through the pages of an employee’s book.
  • After his surprise visit, where some officials were found to be late to the office, he was prompted to shake up management by firing nine senior officials.

Sheikh Mohammed visits local government offices often, so he can make sure everything is up to Dubai’s high standards.

As oil prices fall, it puts pressure on a large source of revenue for many Gulf governments, who are trying to make their offices more efficient.

The director-general of Dubai Media Office, Mona Al Merri, said “He certainly wanted to send a message. Timeliness starts at the top and we won’t go after employees when their bosses aren’t there.”

Next time you’re walking in late, remember the consequences!