Guys, here is my experience at IIM-A Interview
Date – 15th February, 8:30am Slot Venue – Bangalore
We were asked to sit in a big hall, and as our attendance was taken, we were given our panel number and also the sequence number in that panel. We were asked to sit accordingly. We had to submit photocopies of our documents, as per the invitation letter. The first guy would check the copies and put them together and the second guy would verify the original documents. There was no formal order in which we were called up, rather, the people with lower sequences were preferred and they were called informally.
When the time came for WAT, we were sent to our respective panels and made to sit around a table. We were given the question on a piece of paper and we had 30 mins to write an essay on one side of an A4 sheet. No extra sheets were given and we could make use of the question paper and the other side of the answer sheet to organize our thoughts.
WAT Topic – an extract from a memorandum asking foreign nationals not to invest in India as the land being taken away from poor people.
Analyse the argument. Explain the reasons stated. What are the assumptions on which it is based. Why is the argument weak. What other facts can further support the claim?
I wrote some bullcrap :P. After the WAT, we were asked to wait for out interviews as per our sequence number.
Two professors on the panel, one was around 40(P1) and the other was around 50(P2). P1 was in casuals and P2 was in formals. P1 seemed to be more fun loving and sweet, while P2 was more serious though not scary.
P1 invited me in, and as I walked towards the desk, P2 asked me to sit. I greeted them and asked, “How are you doing Sir!”
Both of them were taken aback at first and then smiled and answered my question ?
Soon after, the interview went like this:
P1: So where are you based now?
Me: Currently in Kollam, Kerala, I’m currently running my family business.
P2: Tell me about your business.
Me: Spoke to them in detail.
P2: So what do you aim to achieve from an MBA?
Me: blah blah Dad isnt MBA, so I want MBA to further understand and expand the business
P1: So you are telling me that you can learn what took your dad 40 years of experience in 2 years? I think you are overrating the MBA program
P2: Agreed, I’m not happy with this angle, try again.
Me: *Im screwed.* Sir, I’m not saying that, rather I mean I’ll get different perspectives on business from interacting with students and fellow professors * slip of the tongue*
P1: FELLOW PROFESSORS?! *starts LOLing*
Me: Apologies sir, I meant professors and fellow students, was a slip of the tongue *smiles the most honest apologetic smile I could manage*
P2: Honest mistake, no worries *smiles*
P1 and P2 start to question me in detail on my business, and ask me about different situations that arose and how I reacted blah blah.
P1: So tell me, apart from running your business and working with Goldman Sachs, what else do you do?
Me: Told them about CabAmigo, a platform for vehicle sharing that a few friends and I have been working on.
*more questions about this*
P1: So if you get into IIMA, then who will take care of your business?
Me: Well Sir, I have put in various systems in place…
P2: *doesn’t let me finish* Acha, so systems to allow you to monitor remotely?
P1 and P2 in unison: “DO YOU REALLY THINK WE WILL GIVE YOU TIME TO BREATHE, LET ALONE RUN YOUR BUSINESS FROM IIMA” *in a loud funny way mocking me*
Me: Sir, I am aware of that! *smiling honestly* What I was going to say is that I have these systems in place and should I get into IIMA, I will have a month or two during which I intend on training my staff and my father..
P1: *interrupting me again* Do you think your dad will listen to you? With his 40 years of experience and your 9 months? *smiling*
Me: Sir, NOW he will! *Grinning with confidence*
*P1 and P2 start laughing and appreciate the comment*
Me: Actually, I am not planning on training them to run the business, but rather train them on how to use my systems to make their life easy!
P2: Fair enough *smiles*
P1: *Killer Question* Ok, so can I assume that when (*I loved his choice of words! ? *) you get into IIMA, you won’t sit for placements and will go back to your business?
Me: Yes sir, I will return to my business
P1 and P2 give me a smile with the “Liar, I know you want the placements” look
Me: *smiling as much as I can* Sir, to be bluntly honest, this is a heart over head decision. I don’t have much of a social life in Kollam and I love working in a Corporate environment and life in a metro. So my heart wants me to move out of Kollam, but my mind wants me to go back and work with my dad and scale to new heights.
P1: *laughs* Fair enough, that’s actually a very good and safe answer. *looks at P2* Ok, you may leave. Please do take a candy!
I thank them and as I reach for a candy,
P2: Did you distribute these as well?
Me: No sir, not candyman, but we did have a chewing gum called BigG or something. We had it for a while when I was in 7th standard. We had to let it go since it wasn’t doing too good. I remember my sister and I working hard for two years to finish our dead stock!!
P1 and P2 chuckle in unison and wish me luck.
I gracefully exit the room and once I’m clear of the doorway, it hits me. Fish. I just finished my last step to get into IIMA. There isn’t anything more I can do now. Mixed feelings of relief and tension as I let this fact sink in…
What do you guys think?