IIFT GD-PI-WAT experience
Profile: 10th, 12th, B.Tech (IIT(ISM) Dhanbad): 93, 91, 7.58 (70.8 after conversion), IIFT: 99.96 percentile.
Date: 15 Feb.
Venue: IIFT Kolkata.
I had had just three hours of sleep the previous night, so I was sleeping until someone started announcing general information about the WAT.
WAT topic was “India’s Role in South-Asia: The Way Forward.” I took too much time to think, was halfway through the concluding line when an invigilator took the sheet away. Overall a satisfactory performance.
GD was on the Mistry-Tata tussle. We were divided into groups of 11 each, one student was absent in our group. During the one minute time given, I spoke for about 40 seconds. At least three people spoke wonderfully with facts, figures and logical arguments.
When the floor was open for discussion, I was perhaps sixth or seventh to speak. The discussion was interesting and quite peaceful. I could, however, speak only twice. The surprise came when the moderators announced that the GD was over. I couldn’t keep track of time and thought that we were only 5-10 minutes into it. It was my first GD ever and I didn’t even feel that I was attending one. No stress. No nervousness. It was like a friendly conversation.
Personal Interview: There were three professors. All perhaps 50 plus. I said good-evening after entering but they probably didn’t notice as they were going through some documents.
P: Please take a seat.
Me: Thank you Sir.
P (All of them were smiling): Nitesh, right? So Nitesh, you are from an IIT.
Me: Yes Sir.
P: So how does it feel like to be an IITian? Me: Great Sir.
P: Why great? What difference does it make from ISM? ISM is also an established name.
Me: There is a major difference Sir. IIT is a brand name. ISM was made an IIT only last year. Before then when I told people, mainly my neighbours or relatives that I study in ISM, they had no clue what it was.
P (quite shocked): What? A 100-year old institution and they didn’t know about it?
Me: Yes Sir. Nobody knew.
P: But the same problem will be there when you come to IIFT. Some people will say that it is Indian Institute of Fashion Technology. How would you deal with them?
Me: Yes Sir. They say that even now. Whenever I tell anyone that I am appearing for IIFT exam or interview, they are like, “why do you want to study fashion technology after engineering?” But the main thing is that the people who need to know, people who matter, they know what it is.
P: But how will you convince your locality about IIFT?
Me: I don’t need to. People who matter, they know; and those who don’t know, they don’t matter.
P: So you are proud of being an IITian?
Me: Yes Sir, a little bit.
P: A little bit … Okay, so let’s discuss your marks. They are falling at an increasing rate. Come here. *hands me a notebook* Draw the graph of your 10th, 12th, and graduation marks. Graph which has an increasing rate of decrease.
Me: Sir, it will be an exponential graph like this. *Drew it within a second of taking the notebook*
P: Okay, and how will the graph of something having constant rate of decrease look like?
Me: *Drew a straight line with negative slope immediately*
P: Now draw the graph of a rectangular hyperbola:
Me: *Drawn*. It will be something like that.
P: Your graph is correct. Can you tell the equation? (I don’t know how, but they somehow seemed to know that I’ve been placed as a Maths faculty)
Me: I don’t remember exactly. I remember faintly from my JEE preparation days, there were two variables a & b, so it was some relation between them.
P (trying to make remember): y square equal to ….
Me: Sir I can’t remember.
P: Okay my final question, why should IIFT take you? (I had done zero preparation for the interviews, here the fun begins)
Me (with an innocent face): Sir I will try to bring the best out of me during my stay here.
P (They had perhaps never heard such a simple reply): No! you need to sell yourself. Tell us how would IIFT benefit if you get a seat here.
Me: Sir I have worked hard for the entrance exam. And I will strive to perform at my best during my stay here.
P: See, it’s not about the entrance exam. Everybody here has worked hard for the entrance exam. You are a fresher with no work experience. So why should we take you and not others? On one hand, there is IBM and on the other hand there is *some company*, so why is one better and not the other? You have one minute to answer.
Me (just looking at their faces, thinking nothing): *silence for five seconds*
P: Okay, have you made any friends here, when you were waiting? Tell me a name.
Me: Yes Sir, Sumonto Mukherjee (the guy whose interview was just before mine).
P: Good, so why should we take you and not him?
Me: Sir he has some work experience, so he is better than me in this area. He may be better than me in other areas too. I haven’t evaluated him… Only you have assessed both of us on different parameters. You have much more knowledge and experience than me, so you know this better than I do… I cannot compare myself with him. I can only speak for myself and I promise that I will perform to the best of my abilities.
P: Very good, you have mentioned in the form that you like discussions related to psychology and economics.
Me: Yes sir, I mainly like behavioural psychology. I am interested in fallacies and cognitive errors. I read books and blogs related to these areas. For example, books like Thinking Fast and Slow, The Art of Thinking Clearly etc.
P: And economics…
Me: In economics too, I am interested in choices and mistakes people make. I like things which might appear weird and irrelevant at the surface but are important economically, for example incidents mentioned in the book Freakonomics…
P: So why do you want to enter finance (Had mentioned this in the form)
Me: Sir, frankly I don’t have deep knowledge about finance. I became interested in it only during the last year or so.
P (interrupting me): So why do you want to pursue finance specifically?
Me: Sir I am fascinated by finance. I like how money works. Money rules our lives. It is also the most important part of a business.
P: Why not B.Com or CA then?
Me: *mentioned I am taking CFA this year*
P: From B.Tech to CFA
Another P: And CFA to MBA.
P: “Donald Trump’s rise to the President of USA…” Is this sentence correct? (Had mentioned this in the form). He was elected by people, how did he rise?
Me: I meant the rise of protectionism in USA along with him. Also, Trump started from bottom, he had no experience in politics *gestured with hand how here to here*
P: But he is still a businessman.
Me: Yes sir he is still a businessman.
P: Do you support Trump?
Me: Sir from the Indian, or the world’s point of view…
P: No from Trump’s point of view, is he doing the right thing?
Me: From that point of view, I completely support. He is an elected representative and he is merely fulfilling what he promised. He is acting in his nation’s best interests and I think there’s nothing wrong with it.
P: What will happen to the economy?
Me: The world economy will have a negative effect. It will spiral downwards.
P: So now he is banning immigrants, what will happen to the US economy? Will price of things increase or decrease there?
Me (thought for a couple of seconds): Sir, prices will go down.
P: Prices will go down?
Me: Yes sir, in my opinion American Companies have to pay more to the immigrants. An average Chinese or Indian immigrant is more skilled than an average American. So they have to pay more to the immigrant workers to compensate for their skill. So, if they are forced to hire the local talent, cost of companies will reduce.
No indication of whether it was right or wrong*
P: Okay, So Nitesh you are from Haryana
Me: Yes sir,
P: And you have travelled all the way to Kolkata, So what are the rivers that you had to cross?
Me: Sir I actually stay in Dhanbad
P: I mean kabhi to aaye hoge Haryana se Dhanbad tak
Me: Yes sir, Ganga and Yamuna
P: So do Ganga and Jamuna meet at some point?
Me: Yes sir, somewhere in UP
Me: *trying to remember* Lucknow perhaps.
P: And where does Ganga originate from?
M: From Uttrakhand, Badrinath perhaps (I don’t know how I forgot these two trivial things, remembered as soon as I came out of the room)
P: And where does it terminate?
Me: Bay of Bengal.
P: Can you name any river which terminates in Arbian Sea?
Me: Tapti, Narmada, Kaveri….
P: Thank you. That will be all.
All the three professors were very friendly, they were smiling most of the time. Even though I coudn’t answer some questions, I came out of the venue with a pleasant feeling.
GD: Below average.
PI: You people judge.