On leaving the Imperial College Business School, entrepreneur Christis Plastiras (MSc Finance, 2009) decided to create his own company and is now co-founder of one of the most successful websites in Cyprus, ergodotisi.com, and a newly established start up in London, jobcha.co.uk. He is the Director of a software development company that he founded in 2010 and Chairman of a social entrepreneurship project that aims to transform an abandoned five-star hotel building into an entrepreneurship hub. He's also a member of the Imperial College Alumni Association of Cyprus and we caught up with him during a recent Business School event on the Cypriot economy, held in Nicosia, Cyprus.
Can you tell us about your studies at Imperial?
"The Business School does not help you acquire just theoretical skills and knowledge, but real industry-driven skills that are essential into today’s competitive Labour Market. All of our classes had practical relevance to the industry with many case studies drawn from Companies which helped in having a smooth transition from the academic to the business world. Also, I had the chance to meet with some great people who are currently the driving forces behind some of the biggest companies and industries in the world. All students should take advantage of the great opportunity offered by Imperial College to network with top peers who may one day be the key people that will contribute to their professional success.
During my studies at Imperial College London I went through a transformational educational experience that helped me develop my professional development path and boosted my professional profile with effective skills that are essential in today’s competitive market. After graduating, my employability was far improved and I felt really well equipped with the required skills, not to mention the confidence, to start my own business."
Tell us a bit about the work you’re doing now
"I am currently the Director of a Software Development Company that I founded in 2010, co-founder of one of the most successful websites in Cyprus, ergodotisi.com, co-founder of a newly established start-up in London, jobcha.co.uk, and Chairman of a social entrepreneurship project that aims to transform an abandoned five-star hotel building into an entrepreneurship hub. I am also involved in the development of an incubator by some of the biggest organisations in Cyprus and an active contributor to the “Startup Cyprus” community that aims to promote and reshape the entrepreneurial ecosystem in our country."
How do you feel your Imperial degree has helped you now that you’re based in Cyprus?
"It is acknowledged by everyone in Cyprus that Imperial is a world top class university. Employers and corporate customers are confident in collaborating with Imperial alumni for the guaranteed quality of work. I am very proud to be a member of the Imperial network and have maintained excellent relationships with several faculty members and fellow alumni with whom I have collaborated several times so far."
What are your plans for the future?
"I am currently working with my team to develop a worldwide Career Development Platform where users will be able to create their CV electronically and receive a general employability ranking in their industry as well as employability rankings specific to job vacancies. This includes information such as their expected salary in every country together with the cost of living in that country and suggestions on trainings they can attend that will help them acquire new skills they are lacking and make them more employable."
What would be your advice for current students?
"My advice to the current students is to take full advantage of all of the opportunities that are offered by the university. It is a great place to acquire the required knowledge and skills, and network with some of the world’s top researchers and professionals. They should utilise all of the available tools and resources offered by the university that will help them reach their goals."
What’s the most difficult decision you’ve ever had to make?
"If I would pursue a secure job with a respectable salary or try to create my own company with all the risk and uncertainty that accompanies that."
Do you have a favourite quote or saying?
"The biggest mistake is to reach your goals by aiming low rather than aiming high and missing them."