CAT Tips From Anish Krishna, 99.11%iler – MDI Gurgaon

Anish is a 2017 engineering pass out (University of Delhi), of NSIT. He has 3 publications two of which are in the field of marketing and the other in intelligent control systems. He has also interned with PwC and with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship.  He is a marketing enthusiast and is the National Finalist for Carpe Diem by HUL and PPSI holder

How was your experience of CAT? Did the calculator help?

The introduction of calculator helped me in tackling tough and calculation based DI sets that took a lot of time. Although the calculator can be of great help, I took extra care to not be completely dependent on it and preferred mental calculation over it.


What made you pursue MBA, and why MDI and not any other top b-school?

MDI is a top b-school not just in terms of placements but also in terms of the quality of its quality of students and alumni. Location was also a big factor that I considered while taking my decision. Most importantly the strong reputation of MDI in the corporate circles convinced me to go ahead and choose MDI over IIM Indore and other IIMs.


What was your strong/weak section and what was your overall test-taking strategy?

Verbal and Quant were my strength areas. LR and DI were my weak areas and I would only choose sets that I knew I could solve correctly. The overall strategy for the test was based on being calm during all the sections and solving only those questions with which I was familiar with.


What was your strategy for individual sections (Quant/Verbal/Data Interpretation/Reading Comprehension)?

I would focus on solving all of the verbal questions accurately while for Quant accuracy was the key. I would pick only those quant questions that I was completely familiar with. For LR DI, I was focused on solving lesser questions with higher accuracy. I gave myself a lot of time and solved only the sets in which I had a high degree of comfort in.


What do you think you did right during test prep? Did your educational background help you during test prep? Did it help you in subsequent rounds (WAT-GD-PI)?

I was very diligent in solving past years papers and this helped me in identifying my weak spots and my strong areas. Also, I was able to test and implement several test-taking strategies and this helped me in finalising a strategy that further allowed me to maximise my scores. I am an engineering passout. My engineering background helped me in tackling quants based and DI based questions. Having said that my background as an engineer was of little help in GD and PI rounds as these rounds were more based on my soft skills.


What was your test prep strategy over the few months leading to CAT? (last few days). Was it a test series inclined one or a chapter by chapter strategy?

My strategy in the last few months was about giving tests and analysing their results and then improving upon my mistakes. These tests were also a good way in which I was able to revise different questions which were based on different chapters.


How did you manage to prepare for CAT and other exams within the same time frame?

I gave priority to CAT and then used all the tips and tricks that I had learned while preparing for CAT to improve my performance in other exams.


What was your strategy for the D-Day? How did you plan your CAT test taking?

The plan was to stay calm and relaxed. I had confidence in my abilities to perform on the D day. I took a conscious decision to stick to the strategy that I was using while taking mock CATs.


What resources did you use while preparing for the essay writing?

I read a lot of articles and editorials of the Economist, the Guardian, Wall Street Journal, Indian Express, the Economic Times and other such sources. All these articles were based on diverse topics such as politics, economy, business, philosophy, art etc.


How was the interview experience like? What was your preparation strategy and how did the interview turn out to be?

My interview experience at MDI was very relaxed. I had done well in the GD and the interviewers wanted to ask just a few questions. These questions were related to my areas of interest and I was able to steer my interview completely in that direction. I had joined a coaching institute and had been preparing for interviews through mock interviews. I utilised all the feedback that I got and worked hard to improve my soft skills and my answers to general MBA based questions.


Any message you would like to share with the candidates preparing for CAT 2018.

Be calm cool and relaxed while attempting CAT. You must remember that CAT is just an examination and that there are several other ways in which you can achieve your goals. Try to analyse your mistakes and work on rectifying them. If you are able to improve your accuracy and time management then no one can stop you.


What is the one thing that you like most about your b-school campus? How is pursuing your MBA going to help you with your overall career goals?

The one thing that I like the most about MDI is its students. In the time that I have been at MDI Gurgaon I have met a diverse a group of people from whom I have learned a lot. Seeing their passion for their goals motivates me to work hard in order to achieve my own goals.

My career goal is to work for a top marketing firm at a senior level. An MBA will help me achieve this goal as I will be able to build my knowledge base on this domain. Further, the amount of corporate exposure from MBA will help me further in networking with the top professionals in the industry.