Belling the CAT: GD-PI Experiences

So there I was, staring at my CAT result – 99.82 percentile with 99.63 and 98.72 in both sections. It was 5 am. I was still groggy. I thought it was a mistake. It had to be! So I logged out and logged back in. Still 99.82. It took a minute to sink in. I called up home to give them the good news. Soon enough, congratulatory messages started flowing in from the family. And more importantly, IIMs started releasing their GDPI calls. I still remember seeing the calls from IIMs ABC for the first time. My happiness knew no bounds.

I took a day or two off to let the feeling sink in. Then I went to the coaching institutes to find out what to do next. Join our GDPI sessions, they said. Sure, I’ll do whatever it takes to get into an IIM. So I joined one institute, and started attending classes. There were also several one-day intensive sessions taken by some institutes which I attended diligently. They were really helpful. Specially the mock PIs.

The GDPIs were scheduled for a month later, starting with the top 3 IIMs. I made a study plan, read online blogs on what to prepare, went through previous year GDPI experiences on PG and read business newspapers. The coaching classes taught all sorts of things – stock markets, history, etc. I didn’t know how relevant this was. From what I had read on PG, the interviews focused on only the candidate’s profile. Since I had nothing to do with stock markets and history, I decided to stop going for the classes and went only for the mock GDPIs.

The interviews came. First was IIMC. After a long wait outside the interview room, I was called in. As soon as I sat down, they asked me “Please tell us an algorithm to create a Sudoku puzzle”.. What?!! Algorithm? Where did this come from? I am not even a computer engineer, for god’s sake! What happened to the usual ‘Why MBA’ stuff? As you probably guessed, the interview went all downhill from there.

IIMA was a much better experience. All questions were from my profile. I managed them quite confidently. IIMB was a stress interview. They grilled me on the Why IIMB question. To be fair to them, I didn’t defend my stance well and was finally rejected. IIMK focused on my work experience, which I was pretty confident about. But the best interviews by far were that of IIMI and IIMS. They asked me questions on my areas of strength (cricket, work experience). I was confident of converting right after the interviews itself.

It was a terrifying 2.5-months wait after that. I was nervous. Finally, the results came, and as expected, I had converted all calls except IIMB and IIMC. I obviously joined A.