Congratulations on making it to the B-School of your dreams. When they say that you are up for the two best years of your life, they genuinely mean that. To get you started with the B-School journey, I have listed down 7 key pointers that you could look at before joining a B-School. These tips will not only help you in getting started with your B-School journey but will also help you in preparing for your summer placements.
1) CV Preparation:
This is the most important thing you’ll be working on. Start by listing down all that you’ve done in reverse chronology and start collecting proofs for everything. Ideally creating a repository of all the activities and storing it in one place is a good practice. Then you can decide on what needs to go & what doesn’t. Ideally, one should be talking to their respective college seniors in the immediate batch and start working on the initial draft. Ideally, a master CV and one single-page CV should be ready before entering college.
2) Domain Preparation:
Pick 2 domains based on your interests & profile. Start with some basic prep for those 2 domains. Ideally, you will find enough material for the preparation of your selected domains. Also, we at InsideIIM will be uploading prep material for various domains. If you want to go one step further, you can select a few top companies, ask how their process is and if there is something special required, go ahead & do it.
3) Personal Preparation/HR Questions:
In my opinion, these are really important for summer prep, but often the most neglected ones. The most important part about Summers’ preparation is to know yourself. Essentially what that means is, whatever you are writing on your CV, you need to have a story woven around it. The story might be fabricated as well but it should be convincing enough. As there is still some time left before joining a B-school, you can start working on this right now.
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4) MS PowerPoint and MS Excel:
Without a doubt, these two tools will be some of the most used software not just in college for academic and non-academic purposes but will also hold you benefit in your Summer internship and later in the corporate. The best way to learn Excel is by doing. Ideally, there are a lot of free tutorials available on YouTube. Before joining a B-school, I would suggest you can start by learning the basic shortcuts and then progress to the likes of V-Lookup and Pivot Table progressing towards dashboard creation, Macros, and Modelling. For PPTs, ask your seniors for some of their templates and analyze how those decks are made.
5) LinkedIn Account:
Make sure that your LinkedIn Profile is up to date. (A professional photo session will happen once on campus for the display picture)When I say up to date, there should be a bio with a short introduction about yourself, a header, details about everything that you have done, and a professional picture.
I feel this is the right time to subscribe to some news websites/good content to read. A few recommendations from my side: McKinsey Insights, Finshots, ajuniorvc, BFO by The Ken, NYT etc. This is essential because you won’t have time to read newspapers. It is good to be in the habit of reading news/articles through emails.
7) A sample video resume/creative resume:
Given that the chances of the summer placement process being virtual this time around are extremely high, I would highly recommend individuals who are shy enough in front of the camera to actually start recording short intro videos. This will help you overcome the camera shyness and at the same time build your confidence in a virtual set-up. Also, if you are extremely interested in the Sales and Marketing domain, this is something you should be extremely comfortable with.
These are some tips from my end which I found helpful during my B-School journey.