The 5 Types Of Friends I Made At IIM Lucknow – A Fresher’s Perspective

The best kind of friendship is with people who are ‘your kind of crazy’.

Hailing from a conservative family where parenting and friendship are considered two independent concepts, I realized the importance of friends early on. However, my fixation with the idea of ‘the perfect friendship’ as a 10-year-old, as depicted by every Enid Blyton novel, made it increasingly difficult for me to make friends. As the years went by, so did the myriad of blurry faces of the various people who I called my friends at different points of time during those years. I wondered, would I ever meet people whom I can truly connect with?

I never stopped hoping. Life has proved time and again that if you believe in something long enough, it will happen and my belief that I would end up finding the perfect group of friends did come true. By the time I was 20 years of age, I realized that I was surrounded by people whom I could completely trust and depend on. I was happy. My life became beautiful.

And then MBA happened.

For the first time, I was moving away from home, moving away from everything I had ever known. I was going to a place where every person would be a complete stranger. Two years in such a place meant I would have to make friends. While I was excited to meet new people, I was also curious. What kind of people would I meet there? Would our views match? Would we share the same interests? Would I be able to find that connect?

Five months down the line, I will say life has been nothing short of interesting. The B-School experience is like that of a community. Everyone lives together, eats the same things and has similar goals. However, the people you would encounter here are an exhaustive representation of the people you will encounter throughout your life. So, in a way, it prepares you to face the ‘real world’. And yes, you do make friends. But what kind? Let me break it down for you.

The friends I have made up to this point, I broadly classify into the following five categories.

1. The Soulmate

This is my version of ‘the perfect friend’ – The minute you meet him/ her, there is an instant connect. This person becomes your confidante, your support system, your personal cheerleader, your motivator, your therapist, your partner in crime and is that one person who genuinely cares for your well-being. These are the hardest to find. Frankly, for me, I got lucky. The second person I met on campus was her. This, in my opinion, is very rare and I am immensely grateful to have found her. If you find such a person, be assured, you have hit the jackpot. You have made a friend who will remain with you for the rest of your life.

2. The Friends

These are the people you spend your free time around. They fall into your ideal ‘friends’ category. You plan activities together, party together and in general, are there for each other. The first time you meet them, you feel your interest spike. The more you meet, the more your relationship grows. These are also friends meant for life provided you make an attempt to hold onto them. It took me a couple of weeks to find my ideal group. But when I did, I knew I was sorted. I knew I was in for two of the best years of my life.


3. The Acquaintances

These are the folks you will meet day in and day out, whom you smile at, and share a five-second joke or two with. Your relationship with them is limited to these interactions. These are those friends whom you would contact once a year to wish them on their birthday. But you will ensure that at least some sort of basic relationship is maintained as you may never know when this might be of aid to you in the future.


4. The Study Buddies

After all, it is a B-School and you do have to study. These are the people you turn to for help. A B-School is the place where you meet so many different types of humans, all experts in their own fields. These friends are those you initially meet with an aim to mutually share this expertise. There is collaborative growth which happens. You help each other out or at least try to. You leverage on each other’s talents and skills to gain optimum results. However, there is a very thin line between mutually helping each other and exploiting each other and one must be cautious and alert enough to not fall into the latter’s trap.


5. The Crafty Takers

These are people whom you are bound to meet during the two years of your MBA. These folks approach you with an intention of extracting something from you. There is a negative aura around these people and there is always a hidden agenda behind every single action of theirs. When they require your assistance on any instance or occasion, their behaviour towards you undergoes a significant change, significant enough for you to believe that you are an important presence in their life. And you are, except not in the way you want or imagine to be. You may believe that they want the best for you. But then, the reality shines through. They want the best for themselves and they will do anything in their power to reach that pinnacle, irrespective of the casualties. Needless to say, these are the people who you are immensely better off without.

Whether or not you meet all these types of people during these two years of your MBA experience, one thing I can guarantee is that you are in for a terrific ride, a ride that will help you mature as a human being and which will help you cement bonds for life.


This article was originally written by S. Srinidhi:


S. Srinidhi who is a first-year postgraduate student at IIM Lucknow is a recently qualified Chartered Accountant and Company Secretary. Having lived in Chennai her whole life, she grabbed this opportunity to move to a new city to pursue an MBA  with an aim to make the most of it. A passionate singer, songwriter, and poet, she is now a part of both the Literary and the Music clubs on campus viz, Forty-Two and 3.4 respectively. Her hard work and determination shone through when she bagged an internship with Mckinsey & Co.

Pratik Ranjan

Pratik is an MBA candidate at IIM Lucknow. He is an ardent aspiring marketing strategist. His passion for marketing multiplied multifold post his internship with Unilever, where he was conferred with a PPO. Bitten by the entrepreneurial bug & seized by afflatus to read, write & explore, this twenty-something believes in the power of dreaming with his eyes open. He is a columnist in various newsletters and is up for any discussion that involves the nuances of marketing and strategy. P.S: He's charged by the fuel of caffeine.