Israeli Women in Business: ‘Just do it!’

Tamar Schapira is an entrepreneur in Israel and co-founder of the company SenseIT. The company’s goal is to make the digital world more accessible to all people, regardless of their physical and cognitive capabilities. Being a young female entrepreneur, Tamar wants to inspire others to do the same. ‘As an entrepreneur, you can take charge of your own destiny.’

Israeli Woman in Business Tamar Schapira

Tamar Schapira (centre) when she received a reward at TheNextWoman Summit in Amsterdam on 9 May 2019.

Schapira was born in Israel and lived there until the age of 7, when her family moved to the US. ‘While in the US, I was an active member of the local Jewish community, representing my Israeli background as much as I could. I moved back to Israel on my own at the age of 19, completed my mandatory military service and obtained Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in government, negotiations and conflict resolution.’ After her graduation, Schapira became an entrepreneur, co-founding SenseIT.

Israel is working to bring more women into the labour market and the Netherlands promotes women’s entrepreneurship. Together they work on having more women participate and gain access to international markets, contributing to sustainable economic growth.

Role model

Entrepreneurship is a way for young woman to take their lives into their own hands, Tamar emphasises: ‘Finding a job that offers a decent salary compared to the cost of living is challenging in Israel. However, I find that the younger generation is more geared towards entrepreneurship and self-employment. This helps them take charge of their own destiny.’

‘As a woman entrepreneur and business founder, I take pride in joining the global discussion on female founders and women in the workforce.’ Tamar continues: ‘Part of my personal agenda is to be a role model for the younger generation of women who are unclear about what career path they want to choose. I’m an active member of various women’s networks that help increase the number of women represented in the ecosystem. What’s more, I take pride in raising my family whilst moving towards my career goals. Not a simple task, but a rewarding experience!.’

Learn new things

‘A lot of my startup experience comes from doing, and that would be my advice to other women who aspire to become entrepreneurs as well. Watching my colleagues and learning from them has greatly contributed to my success thus far. I mentor other entrepreneurs as I believe the best way to learn is to learn from others.’ 

‘I’d like to tell the younger generation that anything is possible as long as you put your mind to it. Don’t give up out of fear or because of negative thoughts. Just put yourself out there. The worst that can happen is that you don’t succeed, but at least you’ll have learned new things. Overthinking doesn’t help us to move forward, so just do it!’