Sumalka Mendis

  • A supporter of local businesses
  • Opts for non-brand items to help small businesses
  • Focuses research on Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs)
  • Passionate about facing her fears
  • Believes in kindness and empathy 
  • Loves walking on the Hoe to relieve stress.
  • Campaigning for local businesses

    Sumalka Mendis


    1. Who are you? And what is your passion?

    My name is Sumalka Mendis and I am from Sri Lanka. I encourage small domestic businesses to go global. I have always found myself engaged in consulting start-ups and small domestic businesses ever since I started studying in the field of business. 

    I love opting out from brands to off-brand items, only because I believe small businesses of today can become the big brands of tomorrow with a little bit of a push. 

    My greatest passion in life is supporting local businesses.


    2. How does Plymouth lead the way for studying business?

    I focus my research on Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and how to find ways for enterprises to become more global and overcome barriers which hinder their growth. 
    I feel Plymouth is the ideal place to study SMEs because there are so many local businesses focussed on serving the city or the county.
    Most of these businesses are restricted to this geographical area due to a variety of reasons and I believe that gives me a great opportunity to enhance my research knowledge and find ways to help them grow. 
    The best thing about studying in Plymouth is all the great support available. 
    The commitment the University and its academics have towards supporting students, in all our academic ventures, is just amazing. 
    The student-teacher relationship is very strong here and I feel my supervisors are always just an email away whenever I have a problem or need feedback. 

    3. What is a fear you’d like to conquer?

     I like to live life on the edge, take risks and put myself in really stressful situations. Most of the things I do are fears that I want myself to overcome. 
    You will never know how scared you are of something or someone until you actually put yourself through the situation. 
    And the learning or the experience you get by facing the fear is what matters at the end.
    Sumalka Mendis – Holi festival
    Sumalka interview

    4. How do you respond when faced with a problem?

    With a wide smile.

    5. What do you know of that you believe could really change our world for the better?

    We talk about a lot of things that can change the world in the present context, but I believe kindness and empathy is what we need the most. If humans can start to behave more humanely, I think the world will be a better place.
    Sumalka Mendis – Holi festival
    Sumalka Mendis

    6. What do you want the world to look like in 10 years?

    Green with a lot of genuine smiles.

    7. If you had the chance to share one message to the whole world, what would it be?

    Be kind, be grateful, respect all and fear none.

    Auditor work desk, accounting business research, financial audit, tax report. Image courtesy of Getty Images.

    What would your answers be?