Here are a few qualities which I feel might be helpful in your endeavour to go to IIM Ahmedabad:
1. Perseverance: As with any other thing in life, I feel this is the single biggest quality that is going to help you in your pursuit of a coveted seat at WIMWI. During your preparation phase, there would be numerous occasions (read: terrible mock scores/smart coaching batch mates) when you might feel like giving up, at all those times only this quality will help you stay afloat.
You might want to watch Rocky before you begin your preparation: “Life's not about how hard of a hit you can give... it's about how many you can take, and still keep moving forward.”
2. Single-minded focus: Once you have locked in on your target, then there is no time for dawdling. Do whatever you have got to do to be successful (obviously, I am still suggesting only ethical measures). Don’t leave any scope for lamenting later - as they say in football- leave all you’ve got on the field.
3. Optimism-level Honey Singh: If Yo Yo can harbour dreams of winning a Grammy, we all have no excuse whatsoever in any of our pursuits. So summon your internal Yo Yo before the D-day.
4. Ability to handle pressure: Now, you might feel that your life is riding on this result somehow, but trust me it isn’t. So, calm down, bow to a life-sized portrait of Kohli and just give it a good right go. CAT will be unexpected, so you will have to deal with its idiosyncrasies. In CAT 2015, while attempting my DI/LR section, I was actually mulling over the meaning of life for a good 5-10 minutes because I had given up on the paper. Somehow, I calmed my nerves and thought of giving the final section (Quant, which happened to be my weakness) its due respect before losing all hope and voila, it worked.
5. Ability to be blind and deaf to leeches: On your journey, you might encounter many life-sucking individuals who would project their own insecurities onto you in every possible manner. Just let them know this:
“I’d like to see things from your point of view, but I can’t seem to get my head that far up your a**.”
6. Ability to laugh: As they say “Laughter is an instant vacation” – make sure you don’t build up too much stress regarding CAT or later for WAT/PI preparation. Don't make CAT the centre of your life; always keep some time reserved for fun. This might seem contradictory to point#2, but it really isn’t. Your life is bigger than any examination, so definitely work hard but always spare some time for laughs. Obviously, there still might be times when all seems doomed, but at all those times keep calm and watch F.R.I.E.N.D.S.
PS: Obviously, for the final selection, having a good profile would be a big booster so work towards that, if you have the time and resources.
About the Author:
Utkarsh Goklani is an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad (2016-2018). He scored 99.62%ile in CAT 2015. Prior to joining IIM A, he worked as Macroeconomics Analyst at Credit Suisse.