Lecture at the Israeli Export Institute (Hebrew) – Relocation to the US

Relocation to the US – A Cross Cultural Perspective. Taken from a lecture at the Export Institute

Looking at the adjustment process

The 5 keys to unlocking the American mindset

Click bellow for slides from the lecture

רילוקיישן – היבט בין תרבותי

תהליך הסתגלות

‘מפתחות להבנת ה’ראש האמריקאי

כל מה שצריכים לחשוב עליו לפני העליה למטוס


What happened to a family of a U.S. executive relocating to Israel (as told by the wife)

“We have a dog, I walk him every morning at around the same hour. I see the same people and the same dogs every day, not one person smiles or acknowledges me. They all either stare at me or look me up and down, make eye contact and never smile. Why is everybody so hostile?”

What happened to a U.S. executive sent from the U.S. to Israel ….

“I’ve been working in Israel for the past couple of months; everybody at work has been very nice and hospitable. Last week our U.S. colleagues had a slight mishap with one of the shipments. The Israelis I now work with went crazy; they shouted, yelled and were very upset. Emails went back and forth. During a meeting on another subject, most of the time went to complaining about the Americans and how incompetent they are, sidetracking the agenda. I told my guys in the U.S. what was going on and they made a huge effort to set things right. I came in to work the next day with the solution. The Israelis shrugged and said – “oh, we don’t really need this to be on time, we already ‘did a workaround’ – don’t bother about it. I was flabbergasted, I had no idea how to react.”

What happened to a family of an Israeli COO relocating from Israel (as told by the wife)

“We came with our 15 year old daughter from Israel. She is a bit shy, and we worried about how she would fit in and adjust. As an educational counselor, I knew how important the first days at school would be. I set up an appointment with the principal. We talked about the classes my daughter would take, and I asked about other Israelis and if it would be possible to have her take the same classes. The principle seemed surprised, and said he didn’t know if there are other new Israelis or what classes they would be taking. I asked about after school activities and clubs. He said she could choose whichever club she wanted to join based on her interests. He then asked me if there were “challenges” with my daughter, and if she would need extra help. I was so happy he understood and answered, “Yes, she will need extra help”. He then suggested a psychiatrist. I was shocked. My daughter is completely normal, and the questions I asked would be considered quite routine for any new student in an Israeli school. I suddenly realized that I had, without intending it, already created a negative stigma for my daughter in the eyes of the school staff.”

What happened to an Israeli executive sent from Israel to the US….

“There was a problem with our mail; it wasn’t delivered. We called and tried to fix the problem a few times, but nothing worked. A friend suggested I go down to the central Post Office to talk to someone in person. I stood in line, and when it was finally my turn he wouldn’t help me. He kept saying, “I’m sorry for your problems sir, I will do my best”, and suggested I do all kinds of things, I told him we already tried all these suggestions and they didn’t work. When I pushed to get a definite time or commitment from him he had no answer. Finally I decided I had to make him understand how frustrating it is to be without mail, maybe he would be more willing to DO SOMETHING. I pounded on the counter and raised my voice (just like I would have done in Israel to get the point across). He called security who escorted me out telling me never to return or they will press charges. We are still not receiving any mail – it’s been over a month.”