IIM-A PGPX admit and program experience | Gourav’s success story!




Experts’ Global: Hi Gourav, thank you for your time today! Could you kindly share your story in your words?

Gourav: On the day I joined my MBA, I had 14-and-a-half years of professional experience behind me. My journey has a lot to do with dealing with the challenges of balancing family life with a desire to pursue one’s professional maturation and make time for full-time studies.


Experts’ Global: In your opinion, what actions of yours made all the difference?

Gourav: Looking back, I had a leg up in that my computer science-focused professional history had allowed me international exposure, but I had hit a ceiling in terms of my growth. That is why I decided to do an MBA.

The first time I attempted the GMAT, I did not do so well, and over the following five years, I reached out to other people who had taken the exam and some alumni and former students who had been successful in their own journeys. My second GMAT attempt went much better, as I also used GMAT mocks to hone my readiness. I also think that I could have started my MBA a lot sooner, as, at this point in my life, I have considerable family responsibilities to account for as well.


Experts’ Global: What were your lessons from managing the application timelines?

Gourav: Make sure to reach out to others who have also been through the applications gauntlet. Having MBA admissions consultants Experts’ Global at my side was quite a good decision in this regard. They helped me to introspect early and figure out how to tackle the essay questions. Further, I was able to build a story that reflected my ambitions and projected my USPs well, as well as understand how to expand upon aspects of my candidature succinctly in interviews.

Leaning on this support helped me manage the application timeline quite well, and when I got to business school, I came to know that many of my peers had had student communities of their own to rely on as well. A lot of them had used good-quality GMAT online courses that I had not availed of.


Experts’ Global: How would you describe your business school interview experience?

Gourav: I had five business school interviews that I got callbacks for. For my IIM Ahmedabad and Calcutta interviews, I had to contend with a difference in time zones, as well as particularly interesting questions. For the IIM Ahmedabad interview, I was asked about India’s treatment of the Rohingya refugees, a topic with a local geopolitical impact that was foreign to me as a US resident. I realized that they were testing my ability to logically evaluate a problem.

For the IIM Calcutta interview, I was asked more straightforward questions, but the follow-ups to my answers were where my MBA interview prep really came in handy.


Experts’ Global: What can you share about your MBA experience?

Gourav: After my MBA experience, I reflected on why I had chosen the program. I realized that it gave me a cache that allowed me into conversations, even on an informal level, in the workplace that had greater strategic implications. The one-year PGPX I chose allowed me to learn from similarly seasoned professionals such as myself, and absorb enough domain-specific knowledge to be able to learn from and contribute meaningfully to any such conversations I encounter now.

The ability to lead different teams in a corporate setting is based upon a manager’s faculty to take in even technically-oriented data points from functional specialists and convert them into action plans. My PGPX allowed me such a useful generalist perspective. It also allowed me entry into a truly widespread network of potent business leaders.


Experts’ Global: Can you tell us about your journey post-PGPX? How did the entire pre-application phase and your business degree influence your growth?

Gourav: The post-PGPX lessons began coming into play from the time the placements started. Established companies were reluctant to help more seasoned professionals switch functions late in their careers, and those of us who wished to change our domain found it difficult to do so. Many of us, due to the combination of our many years of work experience and our management education, were overqualified for positions we applied to or that recruiters offered us. In many cases, new positions were created for many of my peers, as was the case for me as well.

In these conversations with employers, the ability to sell a narrative and a value proposition, an ability enhanced in the PGPX, proved worthy. In the professional sphere, as new managerial recruits, we are expected to be able to establish new paradigms of approaching age-old processes in firms. The lessons of the PGPX in terms of case analysis and problem segmentation are useful here. Largely, the PGPX, and any management degree in general, allows a professional the chance to build a lasting legacy, and affect change of worth over the long term.


Experts’ Global: What is your final advice for all our readers?

Gourav: In hindsight, I would say that once you set a timeline, do your best to stick to it. Reach out to others who have been in your shoes and try and learn from their experiences. When studying for the GMAT, use a free GMAT practice test to mark your pre-prep readiness before you begin. Be mindful of the toll that your isolation, as you focus on the MBA journey, might take on your personal life.


Experts’ Global: This has been quite enlightening, Gourav!

Gourav: I enjoyed this conversation!


Experts Global

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