That's great! Can you walk us through your preparation strategy?
I honestly didn't have much time before CAT 2022, so I solved question papers as much as I could.
For VARC - I already had a habit of reading, but I read more of current affairs as well, even economic times to understand corporate lingo. I also solved GRE papers as I heard they had a similar format to VARC. For QUANT- I solved a bunch of GATE papers for this.
For DILR - here, practice is key. There's a variety of logic-based questions, so it'll be easy if you know how to solve the types of questions. Olympiad question papers help here too.
I focused on VARC and DILR more over QUANT personally but it's best to focus on your strengths and do the best you can to improve your weaknesses. Used a lot of free resources, like InsideIIM, MBAuniverse and Arun Sharma, and many more on YouTube to understand basic concepts (LearnoHub for school level maths as an example).
For WAT-PI prep, I joined TIME but there's also IMS for coaching in-person. But I must stress that consistent self-study is the best kind of help. All the study material in the world won't help you if you don't understand a single bit of it, but you'll figure it out if you resolve to understand it and essentially "dumb it down" for yourself.
According to you, what is the most important aspect of preparation?
Consistency and routine. In corporate, getting things done require a balanced routine to be followed. Get in at least 6-7 hours of study and 7-8 hours of sleep, else your productivity will drop. Try to design a routine that won't burn you out completely - so with breaks. The Pomodoro technique is helpful for stuff like these.
Which section was your Achilles heel? How did you overcome that?
QUANT - mainly practised a lot of GATE papers. Also, LearnoHub helped with explaining basic concepts and revising them.
How did you prepare for the interviews?
I joined TIME coaching for help prepared as many question and answers as I could on a plethora of topics - especially TMAY, Why MBA and Why not PhD?
I made sure I knew in detail about each and every thing in my TMAY as well as about the professional background of my parents read a lot of current affairs - newspapers, familiarized myself with basic terms from the specializations of my interest, revised my subjects from grad and post-grad.
Which B-School interview calls did you have? How many of them did you convert?
I got calls from:
All the BLACKI IIMs- all except A and B, IIM Amritsar, Shillong, Nagpur, Vishakapatnam IIT B, Kgp XIME, IMT-G, FMS
and I converted: FMS, IIM L - PGP and PGP-ABM IIM S
and I'll be joining IIM C this year
Can you describe your institute interview experience?
The FMS interview took place at the "red building of dreams" - it went pretty smoothly, but I had to wait for a long time (~4 hours) as I was the last person for the entire day in my panel. The interview had a PI and extempore : mainly on my acads and why I was going for an MBA over something in Biology. It was also my last interview so I was pretty prepared, if not a bit tired, for all the questions.
What was your lowest point in your preparation journey?
There were times I fell off my routine because of personal stuff, and getting back on the routine after a month almost was extremely difficult - all I wanted to do was sleep through it all, as I felt that low and uncertain.