Filling the forms for the GD-PI stage was a very tedious affair. I had a tough time coming to terms with the current affairs. I did not speak a word in my first 2 mock GD’s because I felt irritated at the idea of raising my voice in a fish market where we were actually supposed to make sense. I often wondered what the right approach in an interview was because every faculty who took my interview had a different opinion about the interview procedure. The mock interviews were still crucial because they familiarized me with the basics of what I might face. The mocks also taught me to judge the fine line between being honest and being stupid in an interview.
I had 13 interviews scheduled; 3 in February, 7 in March and 3 in April. I had to travel a lot for the interviews and mentally I started getting so tired that I took the step of resigning without a single convert in my hand. I paid off my notice period and thus gave myself ample time to travel, relax and study.
I have many memories from these interviews. The one which completely caught me in alien territory was my interview for IIM-L (6th March). They would just not let me take the interview towards the area of my strength and kept attacking my weaknesses. Despite coming up with a decent GD and Essay, I failed to convert that call. One instance where I became very nervous was the GD round in FMS (22nd March). They had 14 people sitting there for the GD! FOURTEEN! I was absolutely blown away in that GD, and it was curtains to FMS then and there.
Most of the other calls I converted. The one that I enjoyed most was the experience of IIT-Delhi. After the terrible experience of GD in a group of 14 in FMS, here I was sitting in a Board-Room type of set up in IIT Delhi, on a huge round table, with 14 people in the group. Yes, that dreaded number 14 again! I decided that there was only one way to tackle this GD. Instead of getting lost among the voices somewhere in between, I thought that the best way to tackle such a situation was to start the GD come what may! As soon the buzzer went off, I spoke. I spoke as if my life depended on how much I speak at that moment. I was soon cut short by another participant and I did not speak again in the entire GD. A flawless interview followed and I converted IIT-Delhi in the first list.
(Next is the final part where I talk about the interview of the college I finally got into along with an overall perspective of the journey)