‘I have 4 PPIs and 1 PPO by just winning competitions’ – Amitabh Vajpayee – Best 50

Amitabh has been chosen as one of the top 30 most employable candidates across schools and programmes in India for the Class of 2015. He has one of the best 30 profiles among the 66 final round candidates who participated in the Best50 competition. The final 30 were chosen based on a combination of scores for the write-up below and the candidate’s resume.

What have you done at your business school which makes you stand out from the crowd?

Something that stands me apart is my winning streak of Six National Business competitions. These include ITC Interrobang, Mahindra War Room (2nd), Cairn ACE Challenge, Marico Over the wall, Titan Elevate and LatentView Data Premiere League. This makes me a holder of Four Pre-placement Interview Offers and One Pre-placement Job Offer just from these wins. These competitions presented problems from brand management, entry strategy for new business, strategic road-map for India’s energy need, business expansion plan for a start-up, rural marketing and data analytics respectively; testing my acumen in varied possible business scenarios.

Another aspect that also stands me apart is my diverse exposure in my professional life with work stints in Sales and Marketing, Operations & Finance. Prior to joining XLRI, I have worked with Mahindra & Mahindra for almost two years. One year as an executive assistant to the Sales Head of Commercial vehicle division which involved coordination of sales and BTL marketing activities across India. And another one year in Vendor development ensuring procurement, pricing & scheduling of components for green field projects. Further, my Finance exposure has been for two months during my summer internship at HSBC; where I learned nuances of trade and receivable finance & explored new opportunities for HSBC’s business expansion with focus on South India (received PPI).

With an inclination to solve business problems leveraging my diverse experience in the corporate world, I have developed a unique perspective of business management study. I have made an attempt to convert theoretical learnings of my B-School into practical applications to solve real life business problems. This makes me stand out.


What have you done in your life that you are the most proud of?

When I look back at my life, I find numerous big and small achievements as well as failures. But one thing that makes me feel most proud is a project that I completed during my study in XLRI. The project was about Water Management & Social Rehabilitation at Janumdih, Potka Block-East Singhbhum Jamshedpur. This is a small village adjacent to Jamshedpur facing severe water shortage problems. The project was completed in collaboration with Kalamandir, an NGO in Jamshedpur.

As a part of the project we conducted several visits to the village to understand the gravity of situation and interact with the villagers to get a sense of their ordeal. Also, we prompted villagers to suggest their take on resolving the issues, as we believed that only they could provide best solutions to their problems because they faced them. Findings & recommendations in the project were used as a supplementary report to the proposal which was sent to MNREGA for fund allotment & rehabilitation activity planning. This makes me most proud because my little effort could create a huge life changing impact in the lives of many.


If there was one good aspect about your school that you could take back after you graduate – 

One aspect that I would take back from my B-school would be the XLRI-Culture. It’s hard to describe in words because a culture has to be experienced and lived through.


If there was one thing that you could change about your business school, it would be –

One aspect that I would change about my B-school would be to re-unite the two campuses recently created within Jamshedpur campus which has separated the students into two clusters.


If you had to open a rival social network to Facebook, what would it be like?

1. To create a rival for Facebook, we need to first understand what Facebook offers or is:

2. Connectivity (everyone is there)

3. Interactive/ Engaging

4. Very high internet traffic

5. Brand

6. Free

Keeping above features in mind, an ideal rival for Facebook has to be:

Well Connected: Yes, the rival needs to be connecting which means it should be joined or used by as many people as possible, then only Facebook can be beaten in terms of traffic.

Interactive/ Engaging: Why people spend time on Facebook is because it is engaging & interactive and hence, the rival has to be equally competitive to ensure people stay on it for long time.

Very High Internet traffic: Facebook’s major source of income is advertisements and which is possible because of its high traffic. Hence, rival can beat Facebook only if it can ensure or can offer a possibility to generate similar traffic.

Brand: Facebook started as a privileged network for Harvard students which made it a premium brand and encouraged people to join it. Hence, its rival should also focus on creating a brand for itself which people would aspire to join because everyone is joining.

Free: Yes, Facebook is free and hence its rival has to be free because majority of people don’t like to spend anything just to try a new thing.

Ideal rival considering all these aspects would be “Whatsapp”, which I believe Facebook sensed it and acquired it.


Who are you – Express yourself

I am just like a “Star”. Not because it has glamor but the actual property of a star. It is calm, quite & poised if seen from a distance but is intensely full of activity if observed closely.

Meet the rest of India’s 30 Most Employable Management Graduates from the Class of 2015 here