What Are B-School Competitions For?

At a b-school, the most hyped affair after placements is the inter-college competitions. For some, they are just another added feature on their CVs, but for others, they provide a platform for quick and quality learnings and implying whatever learned in class. So this article exactly illustrates how not can tackle the overhype surrounding them by taking the correct mindset while approaching them.

If I am writing this article on a topic like this, there are two assumptions that you might make of me.

One – That I have not participated in any of these competitions and justifying myself by writing this article

Second – I have participated in a lot of events but have not won any until now, and I am again justifying myself

But sorry for disappointing you (as I have been doing to myself for the past six months)

I am of the third category – an enthusiastic MBA aspirant who has until now participated in a flurry of events, even reached the final stages of many, but alas, couldn’t make it big.

So now I believe six months of struggle for gasping a breath of fresh air amongst the top minds of the country, I have successfully qualified to share my point of view.

Most of us pursue MBA considering the materialistic benefits attached with it, but there are many like me as well who find these studies interesting and believe in learning and also applying them in all the aspects of the business. Working on a business plan for the past five months, my plan only got richer and refined once I started applying all the fundamentals that were taught to me. Thus learning and application came hand in hand. Then why am I still not able to convert my B plan into a successful one? Maybe I have been inconsistent in applying those concepts, or maybe I have been a bit impatient towards learning, trying to learn everything in one go. The second one to me makes more sense. The competitors on all the final rounds that I had participated in were either in the 2nd year of their MBA or were people with work experience. Some being the inexperienced, impatient one was bound to lose.

So what did I learn from these experiences? Well, for winning any competition, the most basic requirement that is desired from a person is dedication and passion. When there is enough to play for, we are bound to work hard, and this comes with a sense of pride of representing your b-school at such grand levels. Efficiency is also one of the most important learnings when we participate in such competitions as there is no scope for mistakes when you perform at such high levels.

But is it too early to start for a fresher like me to participate from the 1st year itself? Well, I would suggest that you can always participate in the first year itself but with an aim for learning rather than that of winning. With competitions passing by, one gets more and more acquainted with these competitions and can easily apply the concepts learned in the lectures as well as through the experience of such competitions.

Making the most of all the opportunities is required from an MBA graduate, and these competitions are one excellent source for motivation to make the most of these two years that are probably unmatchable when it comes to some opportunities that one gets to make a mark on their CVs. The peer to peer learning through these competitions is huge and they come with starry rewards as well regarding winning prizes. But again, learning is paramount!

Harshad Patel

Harshad Patel is a part of student team for InsideIIM and a member of the admissions committee at KJ SIMSR, Mumbai. He is a B.E. Mechanical graduate of M.B.M. Engineering College, Jodhpur.