IIM Shillong – A Leap Of Faith

The first term in an MBA college has to be one of the most, if not the most demanding time of the entire two-year programme. Sleepless nights, endless assignments and deadlines which seemed almost impossible to meet pretty much sums up my first three months in IIM Shillong. Since I come from an engineering background, it took me a while to get acquainted with subjects like finance, marketing and economics. Our courses included Statistics, Behavioural Science, IT tools, Accounting and the like. While these courses introduced me to a lot of key and interesting concepts, I would like to share my experience from a rather humble course called Self-Leadership and Communication (SLC).

Well to be completely honest, at first glance I thought there would be minimal learning from this course. Those doubts were cast aside from the minute our professor walked into the lecture hall. Bundling with energy and raring to go, he encouraged us to come out of our shells. His methods were rather unconventional, and his lectures would often leave us inspired as well as a little out of our comfort zone. Well, it must be understood that when you put some of the best minds in the country under the same roof, there is bound to be a lot healthy discussion but also a lot of competition, which means there is enough room for suspicion and insecurity. So, imagine our surprise when the professor invited us to share anything under the sun in one of these SLC lectures. We were to take the dais and drive the discussion for the next 90 minutes. The exercise wouldn’t be graded, or in other words, there was nothing tangible to gained from this for us participants.

I thought that our professor was being a bit too ambitious and no one would take the bait. After all, this was only going to be fodder for gossip for us peers. Within a minute someone did volunteer, and the person took the opportunity to confront a few bullies on campus (yes, there are mean buggers everywhere!). The next person expressed regret at some of the opportunities he missed out in life. It must be said that one could feel the tension in the air. At this moment, a batchmate shared a few quirky stories and helped ease that tension and the hall resonated with laughter. Some of the narrations that followed were heart-wrenching. And before I knew it, I had raised my hand to share my views as well. I was so moved that I poured my heart out. Here I was, trusting a bunch of complete strangers and I didn’t really know why. When I was done, the mood in the room was somber, and a few others stepped up to share their experiences before we ran out of our 90 mins.

We realized that we had a lot more in common than we imagined and all of us have a story to share. One of the reasons you come to a B-school is to build a network. I believe we started building our network on that fateful afternoon and there has been no looking back since then. IIM Shillong is truly one big family, and while I’d love to share those stories, we made a pact never to reveal what was discussed. What happens in Shillong, stays in Shillong!

Which ABG company would I want to work for and why?
A. I would like to work with Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited. Fashion and Retail Industry is projected to grow tremendously, and I would like to play a part in that growth. The world of retail fascinates me, and I feel it’s an excellent way to launch my career. With numerous brands to manage and in the face of fierce competition, the opportunities to learn would be plenty and the assignments would keep me on my toes.


Ian Michael

PGP 2nd Year

IIM Shillong

IIM Shillong Placement Committee

Placement Committee of IIM Shillong