Israeli Business Culture


Israel is not just a country but a “state of mind.” Whereas Americans emphasize decorum and comprehensive preparation, Israelis are very spontaneous and entrepreneurship oriented. Within this framework, Israelis are less process oriented than their American counterparts. Flexibility, adapting to change and taking an initiative in problem solving setting is a norm in many Israeli organizations.


Israelis negotiate with a zero-sum mentality. They will always push for a better deal based on common mutual objectives. Israelis are empowered to act independently and decision-making may be quick. It is not uncommon that negotiators around the table finalize a transaction based on a first-time meeting.


The Israeli style of communication is very direct, frank and sometimes blunt. Israelis often communicate in an argumentative style and always openly state their opinions. You do not need to agree with; contradicting opinions are accepted and are a part of the communication culture. Israelis value honesty and straight forwardness when conducting business and expect the other side to talk with clarity and to the point.

Israel being a people oriented society; relationship building is an important value in a business setting, though not always necessary.

Time schedules are not strictly adhered to. You should expect that not all meetings start or end on time. Agendas for meetings is common, but should not be expected to be sent out in advance. Deadlines are always defined but often moved to accommodate issues and problems that need to be dealt with.


Hierarchy in the Israeli organizational structure exists but it is not affected when teamwork and exchange of information and ideas is necessary. Brainstorming is highly valued and the open communication style across ranks allows for input from all members of the organization.

For further information on "Israel business culture" workshops, Contact the TrainingCQ team.