Surya Sundaram is Prismatik's Chief Operating Officer and has been with the company since its inception. She manages a variety of activities and is a vital part of our core team.
Can you tell us a little about what you do and what a typical day looks like for you?
I’m the COO of the Prismatik group of companies and I run Operations, Finance, Accounting, HR and Admin. I’m one of the lucky ones that doesn’t quite have a typical day, I could be dealing with high-level operations through to routine accounting work one day, and finance and HR issues the next, across multiple companies. It keeps things exciting.
What inspired you to pursue this career path?
I used to do client management in the ad world and realised that wasn’t viable long term. I was looking for a career shift that better aligned with my life plans. It has been a blessing to receive the opportunities that brought me down this path and there’s so much more I want to learn and achieve.
Many women in the tech industry have felt their gender has affected the way they are treated in the workplace and industry. Have you ever been in a situation like that? How did you handle it?
I’ve been very blessed in my day-to-day at Prismatik to not once have had my gender be an issue. It’s one of the great things about our organisational culture. I have been at industry events where there has been a noticeable shift to being considered seriously only upon disclosing my job title. My rule of thumb in situations like that - and it applies across the board in my life - is to not focus on them, keep doing what I’m doing, they’ll catch on soon enough.
What is the best part of your job?
The best part of my job is the breadth of work across departments and companies, and the autonomy and flexibility I have to get my work done. It helps me stay productive and motivated. I also get to work with a wonderful team - we have it pretty good here!
What advice would you give to someone starting their career in the tech industry? Is there any advice you wish you had known at the start of your career?
The tech industry changes rapidly so educate yourself, up-skill, and put yourself out there. There are lovely people in this industry who are genuinely keen to help. At the very least, you’ll get feedback you can implement and use to improve.
Advice I wish I’d been given - work isn’t everything. Enjoy it, work hard and be great at your job, however your personal life – family, friends, health – needs to come first. As the saying goes, no one on their deathbed wished they spent more time in the office!