Narayana & Sudha Murty’s Story Of Building Infosys & A Family Is The Ultimate ‘Couple Goals’

A lot of couples these days dream of building an empire together by having a successful enterprise and flourishing as partners. For them, NR Narayana Murthy (co-founder of Infosys) and Sudha Murty (chairperson of the Infosys Foundation) are the ultimate ‘couple goals’.

The couple that’s been married for 44 long years has seen the tides of time and held each other’s hands so tight that they overcame every battle together, with ease.

Recently in an interview, the couple that’s often looked upon by entrepreneurs and business heads got personal and spoke about their relationship, their family, and Infosys.

Talking about his risk-taking abilities, Narayana Murthy said that his wife was his safety net.

“She was much more qualified than me. Second, I have grown up in a house of eight children, with my father working mostly as a teacher. So, we were not unduly worried about hardship. Third, my mother instilled in us a sense of independence. The fact that my family had raised me with an independent mindset, and that we were quite used to a certain level of hardship, gave me the confidence to go through that.”

When Mr. Murthy was devoting his entire time to building Infosys, Mrs. Murty looked after their two kids Akshata and Rohan.

Thanking his wife for handling it so well, Murthy said, “The reality is that I couldn’t spend any time with them.  Sudha took care of them entirely. All of their credentials, accomplishments, PhDs, and Stanford education are all thanks to her.”

Talking about how she convinced the children and pacified them in the absence of their father, the author, and philanthropist, Sudha Murty said, “I used to tell the children, ‘Appa is busy. Appa is building Infosys. And it requires time. So don’t worry.’”

“And whenever Murthy has time, he spent it entirely with the children. So, the children were aware, and we worked in such a way that they would not get bored. The children were aware of what their father does and why he is not able to give so much time.”

Reminiscing the time when the family of four would venture out on rare occasions, Narayana Murthy shared, “On rare occasions when I came home on time and the children had completed their homework, we would take them to Mac Fast (in Bengaluru). And they would have their pizzas, French fries, or whatever they wanted. And then Rohan would make sure that he got his new He-Man toy. And if we didn’t get him that, he would lie down on the road at the junction of Church Street and Brigade Road, saying, ‘No, unless you get me, I won’t get up’.”

When asked who is the stricter parent, Narayana Murthy said, “Always the mother.”

“The disciplinarian in every house is the mother, right? It’s the father who spends very little time with children, he feels guilty. And therefore, he tries to indulge them and get them whatever they want. That’s reality.”

Adding to this, Sudha Murty divulged, “I’m not a strict mother in a way. Because, you know, children say what they want. Then I would explain to them why they should not do that. And I had a lot of other hobbies that helped me not feel lonely, like writing and teaching at a college.”

When Sudha Murty first met her husband, he was a completely different man. But over the years, he has transformed for good.

Speaking about it, Mrs. Murty said, “When I met him, he was a young man with no responsibility and extremely idealistic. Compared to that, he is very serious, and less talkative compared to what he was in 1974. I have known him for 48 years.”

“So, what I knew was a young different person, but what I know now is a different person, but we have many things in common. His love for helping people, knowledge, and love for reading has not changed. But with time, people do change. He has become much more serious. That’s what I feel.”

Talking of having any professional or personal ‘couple goals’, Sudha Murty revealed, “We never had those kinds of couple goals. We always cared for the family, children, grandchildren, and our work and take our work seriously, and passionately. For example, I work much more than before. And Murthy never objects to that because he respects my passion, writing, or travel. I respected his work when he was working.”

“We respect, and we give space to each other. That is very important. We advise each other, but we do not interfere with each other. And allow each one’s passion to excel. That is probably the best way to be in marriage, I suppose than owning a person.”

Their common goal has always been to bring up their children with competence and values.

“She has never looked into any of my mail. I have never looked into any of her mail. We have followed it right since 1978. And in terms of, if not couple goal, the common goal has always been the bringing up of our children with competence and values,” shared Narayana Murthy.

Everyone knows how the couple helmed Infosys but great to know they managed to bring up their kids so well while building an empire together.

📣 Storypick is now on Telegram! Click here to join our channel (@storypick) and never miss another great story.