Thrivikram Gadam

Thriving in the Tech Multiverse

Thrivikram Gadam

Chief Technology Officer,

Doosra

Today’s CTOs face a complex landscape beyond just tech. Thrivikram Gadam embodies this modern CTO, blending deep understanding with technical skill. His role merges tech, governance, innovation, and social impact, demanding a keen grasp of startups. With energy, problem-solving, and interactions with entrepreneurs, he navigates this diverse space adeptly. His vision surpasses norms, using new tech to solve real problems.
Thrivikram doesn’t only focus on tech; he aligns it with regulations for governments. His presentations and key projects show how he merges tech innovation with government needs. What sets him apart is his exceptional leadership, not just building but leading strong teams.
His journey showcases a new era in tech leadership—a holistic view for a tech-driven future. From groundbreaking products to vital projects, he’s committed to solving issues with emerging tech. Notably, he created a system handling an impressive two lakh requests per minute for Dominos with exceptional reliability.
His story inspires, highlighting dedication to solving real problems with simple, innovative tech. His TradeFlock interview dives deeper into his remarkable journey and contributions to tech and society. 

Could you provide an overview of your academic journey and explain how it shaped your current career path?

Throughout my life, I’ve always believed that with the right amount of freedom, I’m capable of achieving remarkable things. As a child, my interest was more inclined towards games than traditional studies. I have joined and left almost all the schools in my village because many teachers would scold and sometimes punish me for small reasons, which made me scared of studying and going to school. It was only when I settled into a government school that I found joy, especially in games. My relationship with academics took a notable turn when my brother stepped in to help me with mathematics. In just six months, I went from struggling in the subject to excelling, consistently achieving 100% in maths, though my performance in other subjects remained low. This transformation was a pivotal moment for me and increased my curiosity to solve more mathematical problems. As I have switched several schools in my schooling, the same thing happened in my +2 academics as well. I switched to seven prestigious colleges in a two-year span of time, and none of them resonated with me, but it was once again at a government college where I settled. In my B.tech I decided to study in my hometown as I had a bad experience with my schooling and +2. During my B.tech I was preparing for the GATE exams. My hard work paid off when I secured a rank of 400, which was a monumental leap. My life has transformed from a small village in Allagadda to IIT Kanpur.

Can you describe some of the challenges you encountered during your GATE exam attempts?

Taking the GATE exams was a journey filled with significant challenges. Initially, my application faced a setback due to issues with the postal department, resulting in a rejection. Determined not to let this hinder my aspirations, I reached out to the IISC Bangalore Department. Through persistent efforts and clear communication of my situation, I successfully convinced them to reconsider my case. This ultimately led to the issuance of my hall ticket, allowing me to participate in the exam. Adding to this, I experienced a deep personal loss as my beloved grandfather, who had been a guiding figure in my life, passed away right before the exams. This was a heavy emotional burden to bear during such a crucial time. Furthermore, the logistical aspects of getting to the examination centre posed their own set of hurdles. I had to travel nearly 100 kilometres to reach the centre, and during that journey, my vehicle broke down due to a puncture, which only added to the mounting pressure. Despite these numerous obstacles, my determination never wavered. I stayed strong and focused on getting past each hurdle. My resilience and perseverance played a crucial role in securing rank in the GATE exam. This experience showed me that no matter how tough things get, with enough focus and hard work, it’s possible to reach your goals.

What emerging technologies, particularly in combating telephony spam, capture your interest the most?

The innovation of virtual mobile numbers presents a fascinating solution to combat telephony spam. I work for Doosra and Doosra battles the problem of telephone spam. It offers a secondary, virtual mobile number without the need of a SIM card or an extra gadget. This number, which can be activated through the Doosra app, can be shared at malls, restaurants, delivery apps, and shops, without being worried about promotional text and call spam later. Doosra reverses the traditional phone-calling system by blocking all calls by default and sending them to voicemail unless you whitelist them personally. Subscribers can then choose to call back any blocked incoming calls without revealing their Doosra number.

How do you ensure that technological solutions comply with regulations when engaging with government bodies?

In my experience with Zippr, our addressing solution deployed across 110 urban local bodies in Andhra Pradesh, the key challenge was engaging effectively with IAS officers. The most effective strategy applied wasn’t about convincing them directly about our solution, but rather focusing on the problems faced by citizens. By presenting these issues clearly and allowing the officers to grasp the full extent of these challenges, we created a mutual understanding of the need for a solution. Once people realise that a problem is big and affects many, they are more open to solutions. The actual implementation of these solutions then depended on factors like execution strategy, bid price, and various other aspects.

What are the primary challenges you face as a CTO, and how do you address them?

The challenges as a CTO are diverse and ongoing. Staying ahead of technology trends is a perpetual challenge. As a CTO, my key challenges revolve around the ‘4 Ts’: technology, tools, team building, and timelines. It’s crucial to stay ahead in understanding and applying emerging technologies, optimise our tools for efficiency, build a skilled and cohesive team, and manage project timelines effectively. Balancing these aspects is vital for our success, and I address them by combining strategic planning with a focus on team dynamics.

How do you balance technical expertise with managerial duties when developing a strong tech team?

In my approach to leading a tech team, I never manage people, I assist team members in overcoming obstacles, sharing knowledge, and learning from them in return. My passion for our projects is something I actively share with my team, aiming to ignite the same enthusiasm in them towards our common goals. When a team is united in purpose and working towards the command goal, the need for micromanagement diminishes. I focus on providing support for technological challenges, ensuring that each team member can progress smoothly and effectively.







     







       







         







           







             







               







                 







                   







                     







                       







                         







                           







                             







                               







                                 

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