‘The interviewers look for your clarity on your long term goal and how they align with MBA at this stage of your career.’ – IIM Indore Media Committee

In the series of LIVE Chats going on InsideIIM, this is the transcript for the chat with IIM Indore on the admission process scheduled to happen over the next 1-2 months


Manuj Khullar What can I expect from the PI panel if I say I’m interested in entrepreneurship?

IIM Indore In terms of entrepreneurship, we have a dedicated e-cell which works in this direction. An incubation center is in place and the institute provides all possible help for the same. Every year we have 1-2% of the batch who take up this path and doing very well in their ventures.

Manuj Khullar So it is not something bad I’m thinking if I say yes I want to pursue this entrepreneurship path with the help of this e-cell in the campus?

IIM Indore Yes, e-cell will help you in terms your building your idea, connecting you to the right corporate ppl, and aide you to raise your initial capital as well.

Manuj Khullar If I want to startup my venture and I worked for a successful startup but later gave off the job and joined an established company to see how that works plus I had interest in the work which this established company does, so how to explain this to the panel. I mean I want to startup but I gave a startup job too in the past because of certain reasons.

IIM Indore To crack the interview you just need to convince the panel with your arguments. In case you feel your profile doesn’t go well with your goals, you may plan your points otherwise. Also the panel would be more interested in the genuineness of your answer. In case you have the fire to start your own venture that would automatically reflect in your answers, and the panel would appreciate it too!

Manuj Khullar What are the judging parameters for a PI? Can you please throw some light on them, and duration of an interview?

IIM Indore The panel would be looking for an overall fit for the course which includes subject knowledge, clarity of thought, your interests and your composure/confidence during your interview.

Manuj Khullar If interview goes on for long can we say the panel seems interested in that candidate and shorter means less chances?

IIM Indore We cannot say for sure. It depends on the quality if your interview.

Manuj Khullar If a company offers PRODUCT MANAGER role, what does it look for in a candidate?

IIM Indore Product Manager needs different profiles for different companies. Product Manager may be in charge of a particular product (more of marketing) or it may be managing technological product (in which case it is tech oriented) . As for the electives, you can wisely choose in your second year.

Manuj Khullar Can I know last year’s cutoff if possible? Just wanted to measure my chances.

IIM Indore Please refer to the following link: This is indicative of the selection criteria for batch of 2014. However, as the criteria has changed, we are not sure what cut-offs can be expected this year.


Saransh Shah Is there any specific set of recurring questions in the process? How does one go about preparing for the next round? Do throw some light on the process and some Key Performance Indicators that the panel looks for?

IIM Indore The next process would be WAT followed by PI. Questions can be asked from anything ranging from your personal life, academics (mainly for freshers), work experience, internships, hobbies, interests, and current affairs. So keep yourself thorough with your CV and prepare 2-3 subjects from your graduation properly. As for people with work ex, know about your organization, the industry, etc. As for people with work ex, know about your organization, the industry, competitors and major projects. The panel would look for clarity of thought, subject knowledge and your interests


AAYUSHI AGARWAL For the question what has inspired you or significant change in your life? Is it ok to say that when for the first time I scored 90+ percent in 3rd std. I loved the feeling and saw my parent’s proud face and since then I have tried to put my 100% in everything I do.

IIM Indore If you can portray your qualities as a budding manager through that experience then go with it. Panelists always look for authenticity but you should be able to substantiate your strengths through that significant experience.. Introspect more, you will be able to come up with better answers.

AAYUSHI AGARWAL How long is the interview and GD process?

IIM Indore There is no GD process. WAT can go on for 20-30 minutes while PI, you can never tell. It varies from panel to panel and also depends upon the candidate.


Deepak Gupta What is the idea behind IIM Indore Mumbai campus and is the admission processes same for both the campuses?

IIM Indore The admission process is same for both the campuses. To answer your query about the idea behind Mumbai campus, it was started to capture the location advantage of Mumbai to have easier access to corporate.

Deepak Gupta Then on what bases will the campus be allocated to me?

IIM Indore You will be given a preference form to fill at the time of interview.

Deepak Gupta What if I apply for either of two campuses i.e. either Indore or Mumbai then on what basis will I be considered or what if I fill Mumbai followed by Indore?

IIM Indore Depending on your composite WAT/PI score, your location preference will be considered and allocation will be done accordingly.

Deepak Gupta What about placements are they conducted at common place or separately for both the campuses?

IIM Indore For the final placements, there is a common placement procedure followed at Indore for the two campuses, while the summers have been coordinated individually by both the campuses.


Rishit Mehta Is some background information regarding startups required if I say that I want to be an entrepreneur?

IIM Indore Not necessary. It actually depends how serious you are about your venture. In case you are clear with your idea and wish to pursue it strongly, try and build upon it along with its background study. It will always be beneficial for your interview, in case you are fully prepared with your idea!

Rishit Mehta Also, I have 8 months of experience as on 31st August 2014. Will I be considered as a fresher? And will I get questions based on my work ex or Education?

IIM Indore You will be considered as a fresher for your placements. Also, since you are fresh out of college, prepare 2-3 subjects from your graduation and also be updated on your current project, organization and industry. You could be asked about both.

Rishit Mehta Can questions on hobbies/interests make or break the interview or are they just to test your passion?

IIM Indore Yes, hobbies and interests show your passion and inclination towards things. Make sure you are able to portray an interesting picture to show how well informed you are about it.


Parth Chaudhari I have cleared all CFA levels but my academics are not good. I aspire to be an investment banker or a hedge fund manager so is this appropriate straight forward answer to why MBA?

IIM Indore A lot of companies offering finance roles prefer CFA certification.


Srikanth C How will WAT be evaluated. Can you please elaborate on that? This is my first attempt, So i have very less knowledge on the interview process.

IIM Indore WAT would test your knowledge on the subject, writing skills including Grammar and Punctuation, and your ability to organize thoughts coherently.


Viraj Rathwa What is the difference between Indore campus and Mumbai campus?

IIM Indore The curriculum and faculty are common for the both the campuses. The only difference is the location of course delivery.

Viraj Rathwa What will be the difficulty level of PI in the range of 1-10?

IIM Indore It depends on the panel. There can be stress interviews as well as easy ones. We would suggest you to be prepared for the worst.

Viraj Rathwa What the interviewers are really looking for in a candidate at the time of PI?

IIM Indore The panel would be looking for an overall fit for the course which includes subject knowledge, clarity of thought, your interests and your composure/confidence during your interview.

Viraj Rathwa What is the impression of IIM Indore on your mind?

IIM Indore It is a life changing experience so far. It has been a sliding door for all of us and has pushed our limits.

Viraj Rathwa Sir, is there any trick to nail WAT and PI?

IIM Indore Just be clear on what you want to be and how MBA at IIM Indore will help you in achieving that and know your subjects/areas of interest thoroughly. Research about IIM Indore. Be confident. That will do the trick.


Siddhartha Sahu In PI, how much important it is to tell your goals which are relevant to campus placements, i.e. the profiles which companies recruit from the college? What should be my answer in case where my long term ambition is not aligned that well with placements? How should I go about convincing the panel?

IIM Indore Your answers about goals need to be genuine. And nobody expects you to know your specialty already. However, an inclination for something definitely shows interest and passion. Panel will mostly not look for placements oriented goals.

Siddhartha Sahu So do you mean to say I need not have to be very sure about the specialization that would opt later during the course, but it is good to show an inclination towards a particular one, which is aligned to my career goals. Is that right?

IIM Indore There is no specialization as such in.

Siddhartha Sahu I mean HR, Marketing, Finance etc that we have to choose later on?

IIM Indore There is no specialization as such in PGP. However, there are electives which you take in your second year after a rigorous first year curriculum which helps you take a call eventually on your specialization. Also, there is no mention of specialization anywhere on your marksheets etc. Your electives basically indicate your inclination/ liking of subjects.

Siddhartha Sahu What is the ratio of no. of Calls which would be sent to no. of seats?

IIM Indore Last year the ratio was 1:10 with 4500 calls. This year we too are not sure of the exact number of calls that will be sent.

Siddhartha Sahu What would be the time given for writing the essay and around how many words do they expect an ideal essay would normally be?

IIM Indore Word limit is not disclosed before the WAT. Expect anything between 200-400 words with a time limit of 20-30 minutes.

Siddhartha Sahu Is it true that the duration of interview is around 10-15 min?

IIM Indore There is no fixed duration for an interview. It varies from panel to panel and also depends greatly on the candidate.

Siddhartha Sahu In worst situation, can an applicant request to change the interview date?

IIM Indore Depending upon the admission office’s discretion, the dates can always be changed for a genuine reason.

Siddhartha Sahu I have not filled IIM-I Mumbai campus during form filling, due to lack of awareness about the institute. Is there any rare chance I can be considered for the same on a request?

IIM Indore No, the options filled at the time of form-filling are final and there won’t be any changes made at this stage.


Farhan Nadkar How is life in general at IIM-Indore? Also, what should a first year student be careful about (or say concentrate on) in the first few months at an IIM or for that matter any B-School?

IIM Indore It will be pretty hectic at first and you will be involved in a lot of things. It will push your limits and you will enjoy every moment at Planet-I. We have the largest sports complex across all IIMs and IIM I is got featured among the top 20 beautiful campuses in India so you will have a nice time here. See this link for more.


Parham Lajurkar I am a graduate of 2013, but I’ve no official work experience. I have been working with Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad, a student organization, since I graduated, as a volunteer. Will it create bad impression on the panel members?

IIM Indore It will not be rewarded as ‘work-experience’. Nonetheless it would not be a negative. You should be able to convince the panel that you have made good use if the year and how you have developed yourself.

Parham Lajurkar But I cannot produce any document to prove that I’ve worked with ABVP. In that case will it create any doubt about my credibility?

IIM Indore If you can get a letter certifying your work it shall hopefully work, otherwise you can always tell them the truth and make it a talking point in your interview.


Gowthamraja Thirumoorthy Having mixed experience (Industry +teaching) causes any problem? I mean will it create any bad image?

IIM Indore In the current batch also we have people with teaching background. It does not create any bad image.

Gowthamraja Thirumoorthy Can you please explain in detail about normalisation procedure? As academic profile accounts half of the weightage.

IIM Indore Normalisation is done, but the policy is confidential and can’t be disclosed.

Gowthamraja Thirumoorthy Will sports persons be given additional preference in interview?

IIM Indore There is no additional preference. You will have a good talking point in the interviews.


Raaj Bajaj Will there be a common list of second round for both the Indore and the Mumbai campus?

IIM Indore No, there’ll be a separate list for Indore and Mumbai campuses. The process is common but the lists would be separate.

Raaj Bajaj Is the date for the second round list decided as 16th Jan?

IIM Indore The first list will be out on 16 Jan. The entire schedule can be found on the following link:

Raaj Bajaj By first list do you mean we can expect subsequent further lists too after the 1st one?

IIM Indore No there will be no further lists as such. All the calls are out on 16th and the call getters are intimated of the subsequent process.


Manu_mohanan Is there an elective on analytics/business intelligence in the curriculum at IIM-I?

IIM Indore Yes, we do have a couple of courses related to analytics and BI. Please refer to the institute website. To name a few, we have Business Analytics, Data mining, Optimization, Advance Marketing Research, Logical thinking and processes, theory of constraints and few more.


Raahil Dadla Will the Cut offs be different or same for IIM-I and IIM-I Mumbai campus?

IIM Indore The minimum cut-offs which are out and is there on the website and the rest is always based on the candidate’s profile.


Soumyadeep Banerjee What do interviewers look for when they ask “Why MBA”?

IIM Indore The interviewers look for your clarity on your long term goal and how they align with MBA at this stage of your career.

Soumyadeep Banerjee Is a candidate with 2+ years work ex at an advantage during IIM I interview? If yes then how?

IIM Indore There’s no weightage given to work ex in the admission process, but it obviously gives you a talking point in an interview.



Raghi Thulaseedharan If a person is not highly career oriented but do have some other major goals. Is that a negative?

IIM Indore It is not a negative but you need to have a realistic plan about how you want to achieve those goals. Also you need to be clear about how an MBA will help you in achieving the same. That’s what the panelists look for ideally.


Sai Geethika Kotipalli Right now I’m working in a place where I have a decent pay keeping the pay details aside what else can I expect I will learn by joining in IIMs?

IIM Indore You will be trained in all facets of management in the first year and you can choose your area of interest in the second year. Apart from that you get to build a good network, meet new people, try a whole set of new things. Besides many opportunities open up when you are in an IIM and once you graduate your pay multiplies.

Sai Geethika Kotipalli For PGP alone how many people were called last year?

IIM Indore Last year for PGP around 4500 calls were sent out with a conversion ratio of 1:10.


Team InsideIIM IIM Indore Team – We would like you to give an idea on the Topics for WAT as per the trends seen in the past.

IIM Indore WAT Topics may be very specific, general or abstract as well. They would test your knowledge on the subject, writing skills including Grammar and Punctuation, and your ability to organize thoughts coherently. For specific topics, keep yourself abreast of the latest news. Do read a lot. General topics would test your general knowledge, acumen and writing skills on very general topics and things that you talk about in your daily life, like politics, technology, environment etc Abstract topics would test your creativity and ability to think along different tangents and bring in new perspectives. Practice is the key to acing a WAT. Make sure you practice atleast one essay every day, and get it reviewed by different people, so that you learn to look at a topic from different perspectives.


Ayush Agrawal How are the placements as far as consults and front end banking roles (e.g. Capital Markets etc.) are concerned? And how are they for mid-level banking roles (e.g. Risk Management)?

IIM Indore IIM Indore has indeed been doing good in the Finance domain with top companies visiting our campus over the years now. Please visit the official placements report by IIM Indore for any such queries. Check out the links here

Ayush Agrawal I saw that but it does not give a very clear picture about the roles offered and what companies offer which roles.

Team InsideIIM Most of your answers lie here – It is a goldmine 


Naresh Babu I am into my family business. Will it count as work-ex?

IIM Indore You need to present a work exp certificate on the official letter head of your family organization. It would be considered in that case. Without a valid certificate, it would not be accepted.


IIM Indore Link for IIM Indore’s cut-off for 2015-17 batch here. IIM Indore Mumbai campus cut-off 2015-17 batch here

IIM Indore For more queries, kindly post them on the same link. We shall try to get back to you as soon as we can. Once the shortlist for WAT/PI is out, you will get mails from the admission office, on a regular basis. You are requested to be active on your email id, registered with CAT 2014

Following are our official channels wherein you can get regular updates on IIM Indore and Mumbai campus. Twitter handle: @IIM_I

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Team Insideiim

It is unlikely that anyone will choose IIM Indore Mumbai over IIM Indore Main campus yet. Maybe in a few years if IIM Indore Mumbai creates equally good infrastructure or specializes in certain courses then it could be possible. As of now we don’t see that happening.


“Depending upon the admission office’s discretion, the dates can always be changed for a genuine reason.”
What is the procedure for that?