Setting new standards of treatment with shockwave therapy
Avner Spector is the CEO and co-founder of Medispec, a medical technology company that specializes in extracorporeal shockwave therapy solutions. At clinics, medical centers, and hospitals in over 80 countries around the world, health care providers use Medispec’s systems to treat patients’ conditions in fields such as urology, cardiovascular medicine, and orthopedics. The company’s products are versatile, modular, and easy to use, and offer a high degree of mobility. Started in Tel Aviv, Israel, Medispec opened headquarters in the U.S. several years ago with the help of the Maryland/Israel Development Center (MIDC), a nonprofit organization that promotes trade and investment between Maryland and Israeli businesses and research institutions.
Avner Spector spoke with Barry Bogage, director of the MIDC, for this interview.
Do you have to concentrate on balancing your Israeli heritage with American cultural expectations?
AVNER SPECTOR: It’s a very simple answer: yes, all the time. If I do not take care to balance myself and to remember that I’m in the U.S… For example, I can’t come to the office with sandals like I usually do in Israel. In Israel, I could go to the Parliament, and I was involved in one of the laws surrounding medical equipment: I represented the Israeli Electronics Society in a polo shirt over there with sandals, talking before the Parliament—something that is totally not acceptable here. A lot of the time, when I’m coming home from overseas after a long time or something like that, one of the secretaries in Israel could hug me. Here, if I let this happen, it could be a problem. Now the problem is if somebody from the office wants to hug me—to allow them or not allow them? Because not allowed is a problem, and if you allow it, it could be sexual harassment. There are a lot of situations like this. For instance, where you stop somebody in the middle of a conversation, because you understand what he’s asking and you cut them off and say, “Okay!” In the U.S., you need to understand that you need to give the person the opportunity to say what they want to say even if it’s not relevant and you know the answer. You can’t just say “no” to them—they would be offended. The worst is if you start to answer and say, “it’s a stupid question.” Now try to explain to them why—no way they will listen. It’s a lot of things like that. Each time I come to the U.S. I change my culture as much as I can to be more American than Israeli; and when I come back to Israel, it takes me a few days to come to the right track.
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