Success is not an accomplishment of mere hardships but is an outcome of persistent perseverance and devotion. Below is the conversation between Sarjana and Swapnil Srivastav ( CAT with 98.49 percentile ). The excerpt below will fill you with zest and will coerce you to aspire big deals and will also help pave paths for the same.
Q : Tell us something about yourself ?
Ans : I am the only child to my parents. I did my 10th and 12th from Denobili School , Digwadih .From the beginning I had good academics. This was one of the reasons why I chose CAT because you need a good start.
Q : How and when did you come to know that CAT is your destiny?
Ans : I was in my second year, when I went to my seniors to get suggestions as to which one to choose, GATE, CAT or UPSC. One of my final year seniors advised me that Gate wouldn’t be the right option according to my branch . I even consulted my batchmates and several coaching institutes and decided that it has to be CAT.
Q : Did you have any coaching for the same?
Ans:Yes I went to coaching in Career Launcher.
Q: Despite of all the distractions and chaos in the hostel, how did you manage to focus?
Ans: During my third year, I was pretty focused in my hostel . It was the time when I had my first interaction with coaching. So initially I used to be really sincere in completing whatsoever was assigned to me as homework or assignment. But gradually the sincerity and diligence subdued in the milieu of hostel and I was a little careless for a while. But as I entered my final year, I realized that i had to work really hard for my dreams and went back to being my original focussed self when the mock tests for CAT started. I gave almost 35 mock tests before the actual exam. I used to prepare well for the mock tests too.
Q : What role did the coaching institute played in your success?
Ans : Classes in the coaching institute were not very regular, but the test series played a very crucial role. Due to frequent holidays and mass bunks in BIT, people used to go home. As I am a localite, I had an extra edge as I could go to CL during my holidays too. According to me, classes have a very subordinate role. The test series were actually very beneficial. The faculty there were quite apt in clearing doubts.
Q: As you just said , there was lack of motivation. So, what would you suggest to your fellow aspirants to do to keep themselves motivated throughout?
Ans : Basically students should never give up during the preparation period. I have seen my friends starting their preparation but giving up midway, as they start feeling that they aren’t heading in the right direction. So basiclly you should not give up and keep working on your basics. Afterall its an aptitude test where you have to use your basic math skills and basic intelligence and you don’t have to mug up formulas and do anything extraordinary. You just have to be good at basic maths. English is standard. It is not rocket science but a full fledged show of your understanding and you just need to stick to that.
Q : How much time one needs to devote for hassle free preparation of B.Tech and CAT ?
Ans:-For the B.Tech preparation, I used to generally focus at the time of mid semester and semester exams. As everyone does last night study, I used to do the same thing. The CAT preparation would go on continuously but gave it a break during the semester exams so that I could focus entirely on the semester exams.
Q:-How important is semester marks according to you ?
Ans:-Semester marks are really important. As you know that Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Kolkata which are the prime IIMs don’t consider less than 80 percentile in graduations. So it is important because IIMs are now basically focussing on academics rather than on CAT percentile . They have changed the criteria completely. The equation for 60-40 has turned to 40-60 for CAT percentile and for academics. A guy who got 81 percentile in CAT got a call from Ahmedabad just because he had a decent academics. So, that is the difference academics can make. Especially a good score in graduation is really desired.
Q:-You have been offered campus placement too. So what would you choose, job or further education?
Ans:- Basically I am looking for a good job. If I get a good college only then I will get a good job. Vedanta has given me an option of atleast 8 lacs. So I will go for a better than that and not below that. So if I get a call from a college which has a better placement record or a good IIM, then I will definitely go for an IIM.
Q:-Sir why did you change your stream to management rather than pursuing higher studies in engineering?
Ans:-(Laughing) This is an MBA interview question. My branch basically constitutes manufacturing as well as management. I had an interest in management, so I pursued management.
Q:-Sir how do you see your journey in BIT so far?
Ans:- I relate this journey with my friends and seniors. Journey in BIT has been a roller coaster ride. Initially i used to interact less. But then slowly I got to know the seniors and my batchmates and I made some really good friends.
Q:- There were various options available . Why did you select CAT? Ans:- During interaction with seniors, they told me that there was not much scope in GATE for my branch. Applying from Mechanical is not much good an option as I wouldn’t get a chance hai ling from Production. And giving GATE from production has little scope. I had really limited options . So I had to go for CAT.
Q:-Is there any other exam that you have taken?
Ans:- Yes, I have taken all other management related exams . I started with NMAT,CAT,IIFT,SAT.
Q:-Who is your motivational source? Ans:-Shashank Shekhar sir secured 99.15 percentile. At that time i was in 2nd year . Once when Career Launcher came for demo classes they said, “This is the same hostel from which Shashank Shekhar came. Now you can be the one who can scale 100 percentile”. I was feeling like I might be the one who could get 100 percentile.
Q:-What was your reaction when you heard that you got 98.49 percentile? Ans:- I was really sad because I was expecting much more. Because I had seen the analysis and I was feeling like I would get more than 99. But when I saw the result I was like what have i got ! I was not that happy.
Q : Are you planning to go for further studies after having work experience ?
Ans : I am trying to get a call this year but if I don’t, I have to move with work experience and will use that advantage as well.
Q : What are your long term goals?
Ans : My long term goal is to be settled somewhere , as a manager of some reputed company or CEO someday.
Q : What would you like to advise your juniors ?
Ans : Enjoy the college life . But focus at the right time . Don’t enjoy at the wrong time i.e., when it’s time to study , when it’s time to prepare, be focused . Leave behind all the distractions .They have three months left in their hand for those who are in final year. Stay focused and give your hundred percent. Overcome your deficits and never have the regret of not trying. This feeling shouldn’t be there.
Q : What is the ideal time to start for CAT preparation ?
Ans: Ideal time would be third year . Best time would be second half of third year . You will have a real tight schedule . Prepare for six months and also go for mocks. Don’t compromise with mocks. They are really very important.
Well that was the recipe for success cuisines . One determined and passionate about a goal with perspicuous path in mind can conquer the world . Hard work and devotion are those two tools which never fail to accomplish success.