Sunday, June 12, 2011

"The storm after the lull.."

So the long enduring voyage of MBA preparation and admissions has finally culminated. Spanning several months in duration, it's been a fulfilling and enlightening experience to say the least. I had often come across various personal interview (PI) experiences of past aspirants. I often wondered what was so big about an interview..

The airs and the hype have finally cleared.. The 'big' interviews had some funny as well as 'not at all funny' moments. But they have altered the course of life in a very interesting way.. some of those amusing instances in the top B-schools need to be shared.. so here goes..

The interviewers are represented as I1, I2, I3. And they were mostly a blend of middle aged and experienced industry experts in most colleges.



( I3 turned out to be from gurgaon only and happened to know a lot about the place and the area where I lived.)
I3: so you think gurgaon has turned up well?
Me: yes sir, it’s a popular perception.
I3: so tell me about the development of gurgaon. Whats been good and what bad..
Me: looooongish answer. (included the rich-poor divide and infra problems)
I3: (visibly impressed) so palam vihar( I mentioned I lived here) is an authorized colony?
Me: yes sir.. its ansals palam vihar..
(all 3 look at each other and say ok thanks, you can go now)
I3: ( as I got up) just one thing, you happen to know anyone by the name of Piyush Upmanyu in ITM(our clg which I had mentioned)?
Me: (thinking wow!!) yes sir, he’s in the 4th year in the EI batch. I know him by face.( I was smiling like anything)
I3: ok that’s good. Good luck to you.
p.s. I3 turned out to be the maternal uncle of piyush upmanyu as I Iater enquired from him, and he had told him I had a good chance.


( we had to fill a personal information form which included basic details like marks, college, parents info etc)
I1: ( reading the form carefully) you are from IIM-Gurgaon?
Me: No sir, its ITM gurgaon. ( trying to figure out if this was intentional from him)
I1: (smirk)
Me: ( Aaaaah, intentional) (wanted to pick up my shoe at the moment)
I2: ok so anurag, have you been to a village?
Me: yes sir. (details)
I2: ok so tell me how do villagers use tractors for irrigation in the fields?
Me: (what!?!) uhhh.. I haven’t seen sir.
I1: try and think. You are an engineer. How can it be used?
Me: (gave some logic)
I1: ok how would you figure out which tractor to buy if you had a field? I mean there are different varieties available isn’t it.
Me: (WHAT?!?) (again some logic)
I2: ok how is the internal construction of a tractor different from a normal automobile?
Me: (duhhh…)
I2: can an engine of a powerful car be used as it is in a tractor?
p.s. absolutely 'tractorized'..:p

@ SIBM-Pune
I1: so you’ve have completed school, engineering, both from gurgaon, while staying at home?
Me: yes mam, and it suited me..

I1: so if you get selected here, this will the first time for you outside of home.
Me: yes mam, I am looking forward to it.
I1: yes you should. But you have any idea how difficult an mba course is? I think you’ll be busy adjusting for the two years outside home.. I don’t think u can do justice to the course..
Me: (smirk & conviction)
blah blah…

@NMIMS- Mumbai
I1: so you filled HR at a higher preference than BM(banking mgmt)?
Me: yeah I have an interest in HR +(details)
I2: but why did you fill BM at all if you don’t have an interest in it?
Me: I didn’t know a field could be left blank. Was that an option? ( involuntary chuckle)
I1: ( he saw it) what if you get BM and not HR?
Me: sir NM is better known for finance courses,..( shudnt hv said that)
I1: (latching on to it) aaaah.. there we go.. so the usual rat race.. you should know your strengths and weaknesses and go by them, not by ‘industry forces’.. thats the problem with freshers isn't it. the only thing they hear and see is investment banks..
Me: (now was the chance) blah blah blaaaaaaaah…
I1: (not convinced) whats the role of banks in the EU crisis? is there any?
Me: blaaaah...
I1: (he wudn't give up) what is the optimum rate of inflation?
I1 wasn't to be convinced at any point after that..:p


(here one of the interviewers (I2) was surprisingly young, perhaps just about 3-4 years elder to me)
I1: so anurag, you are a fresher.. have you got a placement yet?
Me: (hehe well prepared) no sir, I haven’t been sitting for them.(more crap)
I1: ok if you get one, what is going to be the expected package?
Me: sir around 4-5 lpa if I be optimistic.
I1: hmmm and after an MBA your starting package will be?
Me: sir I read the recent placement report of MDI. Its avg package is 13.8 lpa.
I1: you know this is the problem with the Indian youth. Everyone wants an MBA after engineering.. and the reason is clear..
Me: sir that is not the case, some people I know from my very own class aren’t interested in MBA at all and they didn’t give CAT. (mentioned some good performers and told they only wanted engineering jobs. \m/ ) (gave more logic of the usual- 'why mba')
I2: (I1 just kept staring from then on) anurag whats the boiling point of nitrogen?
Me: some logic (did not mention any figure)
I2: (one after the other, without caring what I was answering)

what are the components inside a compressor?
can we use aluminium alloys for it?
What is a binary vapour cycle?
What is the law of refrigeration?
In a refrigerator, how do we maintain two different temperatures by using the same compressor?
p.s. clearly, I2 was a mechanical engineer.. and a recent one…:p


( I mentioned somewhere I liked machines)
I1: what kind of machines do u like? What is so special?
Me: answered
I1: ok what is a machine?
Me: (started with something really technical.. ) sir, it’s a contrivance.. (stopped) uhh sir actually..( gave the exact definition given by rancho in 3 idiots ;) )
I1: (instantly, laughing out loud) you do watch a lot of movies isn’t it?
Me: sir I think you are a follower too.. (wide grin)

It’s all been an enlightening experience. Every single interview teaches new things and more aspects of the personality to delve into. “ know yourself better” has been the impetus behind PI preparations. I discovered some characteristics which I never knew could even be discovered. Perhaps that is why they say this process is perfect for selections to these B-schools..
p.s. there were a lot more of such instances but it would become too long a pst to include them all..;)



Joining- IIM-I


spicymist said...

Hey. Did you think it was too much ado about something that deserve it?

Anurag said...

didnt get ur question sorry.. pls re-frame..

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