Kaptains of Kozhikode – Payal Mehta – Transition From Marketing/eCommerce To Finance and Now To Consulting – Class of 2016

Kaptains of Kozhikode returns for another season! Meet the stalwarts from the IIM in God’s Own Country.

Meet Payal Mehta

(To meet other Kaptains of Kozhikode click here)

You are among the few lucky ones in your batch who have been through all the facets of business. You worked in the marketing/eCommerce domain, interned in financial sector and now going to make your career in consulting. How has been the journey so far? How do you think IIM K has helped you in your achievements?

I think my past work-experience made me a good fit for consulting as you usually start off as a generalist. My work experience in FMCG eCommerce was in line with where the world is headed and my internship in finance makes me sensitive to the hard aspects of a business. This diverse experience helps me look at business problems from all facets; thus enabling me to find better solutions. The Post Graduate Program at IIM Kozhikode was an enriching experience in terms of raising my awareness towards the issues faced by businesses in this complex environment and it also equips me to build further on this vast base of knowledge to tackle real-life situations. In addition, it has enabled me to scope out opportunities better.

Being part of the placements committee, considered as one of the critical positions of responsibility in a B-school, what do you think has been the most significant learning for you during your stint at the college?

The stint with the Placements Committee at IIM Kozhikode was an incredibly humbling experience. Working in a flat team structure facilitated learning to work in a team where leadership might revolve with tasks that are pertinent to your strengths. In fact, it made me more aware of where my strengths and weaknesses lie. This stint also helped me sharpen my networking skills; being in touch with people in the industry kept me constantly on my toes. This also helped me make crucial decisions on prioritizing academics and work, something that is analogous to maintaining work-life balance in high pressure jobs.

You have won numerous leadership awards and case study competitions of various organizations, can you throw some light on how you could manage both academics and co-curricular activities so that we get a glimpse of how to efficiently manage time and prioritize various tasks at a B-school without losing focus?

I came for the MBA programme with a clear-set goal in my mind – that is to become a well-rounded professional. All my academic and extra-curricular endeavours have been towards this goal. I think one of the factors that helped me win leadership awards were the excellent mentors that I had from my past workplace, internship and family. These people have guided me in times of self-doubt and have always stood by me no matter however unachievable the target looked. Also, my friends make it easier to get through times of extreme pressure. I believe this has been a major force in everything I have been able to achieve. On managing the time front, I think it helped to be self-motivated about whatever I chose to take up. I could persist because I genuinely believed what I was doing was going to add some value to who I will be when I walk out of this place and into the business world.

If you are to describe your experience at IIMK till now in a single word, what would it be? What according to you are the factors that differentiate ‘God’s own Kampus’ from other B-Schools and hence, make one’s tenure here special and memorable?

The only word that comes to my mind is ‘transient’. It’s so because the experience was so intense that it feels like the time at Kampus just flew past. I believe that IIM Kozhikode not only makes you sound through academics but the place also affords one to develop their views – with a backing in the humanities. This makes us folk unique.IIM Kozhikode gives enough space for everyone to carve their niche during their two years here. At the same time, Joseph Stein – the architect who designed our B-school made it such that it is Q. very easy to collaborate. It institutionalizes association. This is a classic reminder of what a 2 year stint at ‘God’s Own Kampus’ does to you.

To meet other Kaptains of Kozhikode click here