Transforming Lives in India
In 2013, Marshall Smith and Bo McWilliams had a vision to develop First Rate’s first office in Hyderabad, India. With the help of Praveen Pagadala and Rob Bethmann, this vision became a reality rather quickly.
For those that don’t know, Hyderabad is a rather unique city. It is the capital of the India southern Indian state of Telangana. Known as a pearl and diamond mecca, Hyderabad in the past 20 years has emerged as a major industrialized city home to large manufacturing, research and financial institutions. It is the fourth most populous city in India with more than 6.8 million people. However in this sprawling metropolis, more than 13 percent of the population lives below the poverty line, that’s 1.7 million people and 32 percent of the population lives on less than $1.30 a day.
This vision was not going to be easy. Creating, establishing and building a business that exists to enhance the value we bring to our customers and make an impact in the community in Hyderabad is not considered the norm for US-based companies. But First Rate set off to do just that …
Proverbs 27:17: “as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another”.
Marshall, Bo, and Rob went to India to partner with Praveen and help transform the way business was conducted and operated to be stewards to both clients domestically and communities internationally making a greater impact while creating opportunity.
Today, First Rate’s India office operates with 12 fulltime staff members allowing our office to have a 24/7 operating model. The India teams responsibilities include monitoring the server environment, nightly loads, performance processing and support related tasks while we, in America, sleep!
“First Rate,” in Rob’s words “will never solve poverty”, but we can be a driver and part of a bigger solution to help invest and grow people that build businesses to give back to the mission, culture, and country it serves.
Combining business as a mission may not be for everyone, but could you imagine a world where every company operated with the purpose to be stewards to their clients, to impact the world around them, to invest in human capital, to work for a greater good, to give back to the local, national and international communities
According to Rob, “Businesses can be the lifeblood of the mission a firm operates with. Business can conquer social injustices and give hope to people and communities that dream of opportunity.” First Rate as a business is helping transform lives in India, which in turn is transforming lives of employees who are called to serve the mission that is impacting our India office. Check out Rob Bethmann’s experience and how India has changed him and his heart to serve and impact our business.