Employee Spotlight

Maria Loufardaki

Head of People

Maria Loufardaki is based in Reading, UK.

How long have you been at BibliU?

I've been with BibliU for about a year, but it feels like I've been here forever - in the best possible way of course!

What does your job entail?

My job is making sure we have a strong, talented, motivated and happy team of people who enjoy what they do and who will make BibliU the most successful is can be.

What do you enjoy most about your role, your team, and BibliU?

What I enjoy the most is working closely with such talented and different people. We have a team that's spread around the globe and everyone brings to the table something completely different. In addition, what I love about BibliU is that I have freedom to make my role my own. Everyone is open to change, to new ways of doing things and it's exciting to know that you can make an impact from day one.

What's the worst holiday you've ever taken and why?

I've never been on a bad holiday but, reading this question, my first US roadtrip comes to mind! My partner and I landed to LA after a very long flight and the first thing we did was to pick up the car we had hired - a HUGE SUV with automatic transition. We then drove to our hotel and, while trying to park, we somehow ended up knocking down the front fence of the hotel! THE WHOLE FENCE!

We freaked out and I immediately thought that our holiday would be ruined but turns out the hotel manager was incredibly cool about it and the insurance company sorted everything out the next morning so we were ready to begin our holiday as if nothing had happened. This actually turned to be one of the best holidays I've ever taken and, in retrospect, this story has made it even better!

Lesson to learn: never try to park a GIGANTIC vehicle uphill when you're completely sleepless.

What's something on your bucket list?

Going on an expedition to Antarctica!!

If you could do another job for a day, what would it be?

I'd love to be a travel planner! From creating road trips to looking for hotels and figuring out budgets, I would love every second of it!

What makes you the happiest?

That would be either being with my loved ones or the feeling when I land in a new place I've never been to before. All you need in life is love and adventure, right? :)

Do you have any phobias?

I have a severe flight phobia which is ironic because I'm an expat and also traveling is my passion in life. Oh I am terribly scared of grasshoppers as well!

If you could learn to do anything, what would it be?

Surfing! I love the sea and I enjoy water sports in general but I've never tried surfing so that's definitely on my list of things to learn. And coding too!

Tell us something surprising about yourself.

I ate salad for the first time when I was 25 years old. And by salad I mean any salad.

If you could only have one food for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Chicken massaman curry with egg-fried rice - every day, all day!

What was the last thing you binge-watched?

Wild Wild Country. If I could, I'd stay up every night, watching true crime documentaries.

If you could travel anywhere in the world, regardless of budget, where would you go and why?

French Polynesia! The place looks unreal and I am hoping to visit it as part of a longer journey including Australia and New Zealand as well. One day...!

Coffee of tea? How do you take it?

Coffee,  coffee,  coffee! Black coffee, no sugar, no milk, please! What's that thing called "tea" by the way? :P

What's your go-to order at the pub/bar?

A glass of red wine - a large one!

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Athens, Greece. Athens is such an amazing city with so many different sides to it, great people and filled with sunshine and delicious food. I've been living in the UK for almost 7 years now but Athens will always be my home!

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