How Important Are Academic Scores When It Comes To B-School Recruitment Process? – Answered By An XLRI Student
Everyone who has cleared an entrance exam knows the effort it takes to get past that huge stumbling block, the hours of preparation to cross the sectional cut-offs, the Mock entrances and finally the actual test, where we have to maintain a balance between several interests to do our best. It is no mean feat to get into one of the top b-schools in India, and why do we put this effort? The answer could be different for different people but the question is are we all on the same page once we cross the finish line.
Humans like to categorise people based on race, religion, and in case of a b-school based on your academic performance in life until now and the college, you come from. I live in a place where everyone is different, it is meant to be so, diversity makes you question your past learnings and compare it to the learnings of the people who are different from you. In my case the diversity came in the form of academic over-achievers, up until the point I came to a b-school I realised I had never came in close contact with this lot, always maintaining my distance until then, but in a b-school I was surrounded by them, while some had topped the board, some were rank-holders throughout their lives, I missed the lightness of being amongst friends who didn’t care, but it was exciting to meet these new people. Soon I realised that there were two kinds of people, the ones who believed they landed in a b-school by some stroke of luck (Me) and the ones who felt they were born to be here. Soon we were bombarded with assignments and quizzes and the latter lot thrived in it while the former group was in various stages of Shock, fear and disinterest.
The term C.Q.P.I in a b-school can be considered similar to wealth in the real world, and a few friends and I were close to touching the Poverty line. A few companies which come to hire follow the Rich get richer principle (Read Consult). So I rejected consulting companies before they could reject me.
So do those who are not academic overachievers fail to stand a good chance in the recruitment process?, the answer to that is NO, while it is true that the Major consulting companies do prefer people with strong academic achievements (This is viewed as a dip-stick test to consistency) most of the companies thankfully look at the overall profile, so I think my interest in writing and sports saved me, they were my talking points in several interviews.
So why the emphasis on past academics in b-school recruitments by a few companies, and for selection of candidates by b-schools for that matter, it all follows a circle, whether it is virtuous or viscous is for us to interpret, it helps in categorisation of people it transforms the unknown to known, if I had to place my bets on a horse I would look at its past performance, same is the case with b-schools, everyone is looking for the priced winning horse and they want to eliminate as much ambiguity as possible, academic performance is one such ambiguity eliminator. So what do you do if your past academic performance is poor and want to start afresh? Sadly, the Indian MBA education system doesn’t have an answer yet.