Sweet Success- Sri Krishna Sweets


A successful businessman, an affectionate father, a loving husband, a socially responsible citizen, a spiritual man, an intellect – these are just a few phrases with which can best describe, one of the most inspiring person in the town – M Murali, Managing Director of Sri Krishna Sweets. From helping out his dad in his early years, to teaching his daughters the family business, this legendary entrepreneur shares his monumental journey to Gokul Sriman.

Born and brought-up in Coimbatore, this 55-year-old brilliant businessman led a childhood riddled with memorable moments. ‘The life we lived was hundred thousand times better than what we are now’ he said, with a hint of melancholy. ‘I finished my schooling in a government aided school. I lived in a large joint family of 25 in a simple house in one of the busiest streets in Coimbatore – Periya Kadai Veedhi (Tamil for ‘Big Bazaar Street’). Due to presence of shops, our neighbourhood bustled with people on all days, excluding Sundays when boys and girls took to the streets to play games’. Recalling his childhood days playing games like kites, gaththais (a combination of paper rockets and kites), nondi, gilli, etc. ‘Sometimes, even our family members would enact plays based on epics and great literary works such as Thiruvilayadal and Silapathigaram. Fun and happiness was a phenomena, not a single day was a sad one’, he exclaimed, beaming with happiness.

When Murali came to Chennai in 1996 with an idea to develop the business, he got support of his father, the legendary businessman, Mahadeva Iyer.

‘I was involved in the business from the age of 12. Over the years our knowledge increased. Of course my father was a guiding force in every phase’. Each time he spoke of his father, one can notice a sparkle in his eyes. ‘When I came to Chennai with intention to expand the business, Appa said two things: Nalla Varuva Da; Eppovume Suththama Iru (You will do good; Always be clean). His words always had a thousand innate connotations in it and as I grew my business and as a human being, I understood that’. But Mahadeva Iyer’s untimely demise in 2000, didn’t deter the growth of his son. ‘He was with me for almost five years in Chennai and witnessed my metamorphosis into a good businessman. He planted the seed of purity in me at a very young age. Everything I know both in business and life, I attribute to my father. Even today, I feel his presence within me, driving me to do well’.

Although, Mahadeva Iyer had only completed second grade in schooling, his entrepreneurial skills preceded him. He started the first air- conditioned restaurant in Coimbatore in the 1950s, introducing commercial form of
Adai Aviyal (a type of dosa with vegetable curry), and the world famous Mysurpa are some of his notable accomplishments. Made of gram flour, ghee and sugar, this c.a. 18th century delicacy from a certain south Indian kingdom marked a milestone in the career of Mahadeva Iyer. Stripping its rough texture, hard to chew composition and porous appearance, Mahadeva Iyer re-invented and launched it as a soft, ghee dripping, mouth-watering sweet which revolutionised the sweets and savouries industry.

Till date, Mysurpa is the highest selling sweet in SKS, of the variety of sweets and savouries which is close to 300. Besides businessman, he was replete with noble qualities. ‘My father led by example. Instead of teaching me what hard work means, he toiled day in and day out and showed what it meant. When he didn’t like an idea, instead of pointing out the negatives, he would come up with another idea, void of negatives. He taught me how to be committed to work and family 24×7.’ The more one learns of the great yet humble person that Mahadeva Iyer was, one understands where Murali’s qualities come from. Although his father played a major role in shaping his life, Murali addressed his mother’s indispensable role in bringing him up as a disciplined and responsible citizen. ‘Amma, Amma thaan. There is nothing higher than one’s mother.’ Murali is a multi-faceted personality he has organised a number of socio cultural, a reciprocation of the good, he received from the society, as he puts it. The programs organised by him are not only tailor-made to reach every crevice of the society, but also inspires everyone who are a part of it.

The enormous support I received from the Sabhas, customers at SKS and the hundreds of friends I made are what drove the inexplicable force inside of me to organise more and more socio-cultural events. I am just a normal person who wants good things to happen’ he says. He has successfully organised almost 15,000 events since 1996 and that number is only going to increase exponentially. The events cover a large spectrum of the society.

Amudhu Padai, wherein senior citizens and physically challenged children are served gourmet food every month, Unnai Arindhal, a personality development programme aimed at the youth of today, involving motivational speakers addressing schools and colleges, and a large number of programmes such as Sakthi Kodu, Sakthi Sangamam primarily organised for women empowerment are just a few of the thousands of events Murali has spearheaded in the past two decades, impacting thousands of people every year.

A special mention about, ‘Salute to Mothers’ a unique programme, in which mothers of successful personalities are honoured. ‘We earn wealth, both intellectual and materialistic, for the sole purpose of sharing – be it with family or friends or other good people. That’s what my father always told me and I’ve merely been following his words to every letter. Even the events we organise are based on this principle of sharing wealth’ he says.

This down-to-earth social reformer has been awarded numerous accolades including the Life time achievement award- The Dawn Foundation (2011), Best Business Person of the year and Fetna Award of Excellence (2006)- Congressional Record, Amar Seva Award (2007), Women Exclusive magazine Award, Shri Visvesvaraya Industrial Award (2002) from All India Manufacturers organization which was conferred by Sri Ram Mohan Rao, former Governor of Tamilnadu, Sadhana Award – Samudhaya Foundation given by former President of India Dr APJ Abdul Kalam and many others for his wonderful work in business.

Just when we thought that he couldn’t surprise us with anymore inspiring things, he entrapped us on his takes about education, ‘Education is indeed of paramount importance but it mustn’t be blown out of proportions. The level of mental maturity should grow hand in hand with the intellect. Maturity and intellect are two sides of the same coin. The perfect balance of both will enable one to think higher, think deeper and think beyond one’s self. That’s what we need to take from education – social responsibility’ he says. And when asked about his success mantra, ‘One can only tread along the path to success. Reaching the destination called success is all but an illusion. Goals we set are rapidly changing and also definitions of success. What is success today is but a surpassed goal of tomorrow.’

He also has a very intriguing approach to god and religion. According to him,’ Religion and spirituality are palpable feelings which can’t be quantified. They’re like the, fragrance of a rose. You can smell it but can’t quantify or express it in words. God is another such inexplicable phenomenon. He’s omnipresent and equal – there’s no such thing as a small God, big God, more powerful God, less powerful God. There’s just God. If you pray occasionally, He will grace you occasionally. Once you realize He’s always with you, within you, the constant quest for God and the problems that accompany it, go away.’

Both his house and office is aureate with hundreds of statues of Lord Ganesh. Being the neo-modern religious person that he has a unique explanation for his love for the Lord of good fortune, ‘I picturise Lord Ganesh as a bundle of positive energy. From a layman’s perspective, the whole idea of his Vahana (Vehicle) being a rat despite his large appearance might be a little unsettling. When heavenly bodies which are so enormous but don’t intersect paths in a million years – if that makes sense, the former does too.’ One more reason to love the Lord of all beginnings, as he puts it, is his unique accessibility. ‘A small, wet block of turmeric can be Him, a idol made of clay could be Him or even a great, majestic idol made of stone. That’s what I love and learnt from Lord Ganesh – to be accessible to all.’

His unique distinctive way of describing things was thought-provoking. He also has his own idiosyncratic view to the grand scheme of things. ‘Why do you think man keeps reading epics about Gods over and over again? – Inspiration and Motivation. It gives the will to be good and to do good. Ultimately, lead a life like that of a God. When we usher in this good ‘will’, through music, dance or any other form of art which brings us joy or simply with good and pure thoughts, good things happen. That’s the balance of nature. Every mudhra a Bharatnatyam dancer does, every ritual a priest performs, every other action of man drives the cosmos. Good thoughts lead to good outcomes.’

When we retreated to talking business, he explained us about his approach to solving problems. He says, ‘Problems may come from any directions, but solutions need to come from within. Just because the sea is a little windy, it doesn’t mean you don’t set sail. You manipulate the winds to navigate through the rough seas – that’s how you approach business. When you convert problems into opportunities to grow, you’ll find solutions easily.’

Currently, Sri Krishna Sweets has a factory at Nemam, in Tiruvallur which produces 4 tons of food items a day. Competition is not something Murali concentrates on much. He believes in doing the best without comparison, for he believes that comparing things is one of the biggest deterrents for growth.

Following in his footsteps are two charming daughters Sneha and Shruthi, who are also a part of the SKS Management. While Shruthi actively participates in works relating to management, with a knack for leadership, Sneha on the other hand is an innovator. But, she was quick to admit that no one can surpass her father when it comes to innovation, ‘Whenever I come up with a new idea for a brand or when Shruthi comes up with new accounting measures, Appa would, accentuate their uniqueness by a thousand times. He is the ultimate innovator.’ said the brain behind the successful product based brand, Bolizza. ‘Just like Appa, Amma also solves conflicts and issues in a jiffy. On a normal day, I would probably just mention about an issue at workplace and Amma would make a casual comment which would turn out to be an amazing solution’, she further added.

Murali also spoke very highly of the pivotal role of his wife, ‘Just like my parents, she has always been a thriving source of positivity for all of us. Although I have given a profession to my daughters, my wife taught them discipline.

Speaking more about the role his daughters play in the business for the past few years, ‘I feel like all I need to do is pass on the knowledge I have gained and the lessons my father taught me to my daughters – how to concentrate on business, along with spending ample time with family. Criticism and appreciation of work is of paramount importance and my daughters have grasped it. Although the youngsters are very intelligent they believe that they’re the only ones who are right, this attitude is wrong’

On a final note, Shruthi summarised what she looks up to her father, ‘He has achieved so much success, all the while staying ‘pure’ and incorruptible. Even when I tell him he’s wrong when, more often than not, he would turn out to be right, he never loses his cool. He calmly explains to me my shortcomings in the most polite way and always offers the benefit of the doubt to everyone. The amount of altruism he possesses is absolutely mind-boggling.’

Ref : WomanExclusive.co.in


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தெரிந்த சுவை; தெரியாத கதை:

மைசூர்பாக் பற்றிய ஜோக்குகள் மிக பிரபலம்.  ஆனந்த விகடன், கல்கி, குமுதம் என எல்லா பத்திரிகைகளிலும்  மைசூர்பாக் கடிக்க முடியாமல் படும் அவஸ்தையை தீபாவளி இதழில் வெளியிடுவார்கள்.  (அம்மா!! என்னை போலீஸ் துரத்துது.  நீ பண்ண மைசூர்பாக்கை ரயில் தண்டவாளத்தில் வைத்தேன்.  ரயில் கவுத்துவிட்டது!!!). ஒருவர் மட்டும் மாற்றி யோசித்தார்.  மைசூர்பாக் + அல்வா என ஒரு இனிய திருமணம் செய்து வைத்தார்.  கோயம்பத்தூர் மைசூர்பா பிறந்தது.

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2 Responses to Sweet Success- Sri Krishna Sweets


    full of secrets as how to live FULL lIFE VERY EEASILY


    Very good inspiring article. Can the business forum also create an initiative wherein these kinda businesses can help our young and first generation entrepreneurship less risk business models.
    As these greats have undergone huge difficulties for success, they can as well help our community youth by cutting short the pain cycletime and these activities can also be a part of their CSR initiates which is mandatory per law.

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