Soula Marie Perdis shares her story at the Women, Management and Work Conference.
Soula Marie Perdis shares her story at the Women, Management and Work Conference.

Where are they now?

Soula Marie Perdis  | Bachelor of Economics graduate 1991  | Chief Operating Officer, Napoleon Perdis

How has your relationship with Macquarie evolved since you graduated?
Napoleon, I, and our four daughters have been based in Los Angeles since 2006.  Even though we’ve been based in LA, I have been following the university news all of these years, and was thrilled when contacted by the Alumni Relations Director, and extended an invitation to speak at the recent Women in Management and Work conference gala dinner.  It is wonderful to see how the university continues to inspire and educate generations to come.

What might a typical day as Chief Operating Officer of Napoleon Perdis involve?
As COO, I look after our product development, warehousing, finance and logistics.  It all starts with a new product idea, which then gets tracked through its 12 months of development.  I utilise my number skills, and ensure the correct product mix of stock is ordered, produced and delivered on time AND on budget, for our concept stores, and all retail partners so that our customer is always looked after.

My typical day-to-day involves a lot of meetings and appointments.  I am grateful for technology and having an iPhone, to prompt me with reminders and keep me on track as I juggle being a mum, wife, daughter, and COO.

We’d love to know more about you and Napoleon as young students. Any special memories of your time together on campus?
Napoleon and I didn’t have any classes together but we would run into each other in the university corridors.  We would meet up at the Blue Burger Bar for lunch, or the picnic area to share a meal.

A special memory was the time shared between classes at the beginning of our relationship. It’s amusing to think now that Napoleon and I were almost not-to-be; apparently I didn’t greet him initially at the E7B building, but this was because I did not see him (I was short-sighted then). He thought I was ignoring him.  Napoleon was a rock n’ roll looking guy and counterculture back then when he introduced himself.  I was passionate about math and numbers, and even though he wasn’t, but we complemented each other and still do.  Everything has worked for the two of us because of Napoleon’s dreams and aspirations.

What was the most valuable thing Macquarie or its lecturers taught you for your future career in management?
My education at Macquarie was both rigorous and challenging, and  indulged my passion for numbers while I learned how to apply mathematical and statistical methods to business.  My focus was on Finance and Actuarial Studies, and I felt so supported in my education from all levels of staff ranging from advisors to professors.  Studying is one thing, but then to practically apply the theory in reality would come full circle after graduation. I started in an entry level position and evolved to a managerial role, utilising skill sets to keep flourishing in my career. If my undergraduate-self could see me now, she would definitely be proud of the hard work, achievements, and journey!

Is there a former student of yours who has gone on to great things, or who you’d like to know more about? Let us know: