My Selection was inevitable because of CL’s PDPP – Saurabh Shubham, XLRI and SPJAIN convert

PDPP has been of immense value to me. When I cleared the written exams, CAT, XAT etc., I had no inkling regarding how to commence my preparation. There was so much to read, so much to prepare in a short span of time. I had to prepare for all the recent happenings, I also had to  remember important statistics to quote during WAT and interviews. Besides all this, I had to prepare for all the HR questions which might be asked in the interviews. To sum it up and I am not exaggerating, it is a huge task to prepare for all this in one month.

I joined PDPP of Career Launcher, as soon as my XAT was over. This programme is so IMG-20190112-WA0028comprehensive that even if you do only the minimum that this programme asks of you, you would do well in the interview process. I had to first write a comprehensive essay about myself at least of 2500 words. I also had to answer around 10 questions regarding myself in the PDPP section of the CL website. Combined, these were more than sufficient to answer almost all the HR questions. If you spend enough time and write the essay and those answere diligently and honestly, your half of the preparation is done.

We also had a telegram group where we regularly discussed the current affairs topics. Sreeni sir made us join “BodhiTree” a telegram blog(sort of) where he shared important current affairs articles from various sources. Once he shared 20 hot topics to prepare which was so important that almost nothing was asked out of it in the interview process. In fact my WAT and GD in many processes went well due to those 20 topics. PDPP also provides you with mock GDs at your local CL centres.

Then I had a personal interview on skype with Sreeni sir. Though, PDPP provides you with 2-3 interviews with mentors, but if you follow the above mentioned process diligently, one interview is sufficient for you. The interview is catered to address your personality and profile specifically. I was asked questions from my work area and general current affairs some of which were asked verbatim in the actual interviews, later. Overall, I understood the gaps in my preparation and also got to know my strengths. The mentors are extremely experienced and knowledgeable and the mock interview experience is as rich as the original ones.

After the mock interview, Sreeni sir asked me which interview is first? As I replied SPJIMR, he told me you would crack it. You have prepared well. And I got selected as he had predicted. Later I also converted XLRI.

To conclude, I would only say that the idea of preparation for MBA institutes interview processes is daunting to say the least. The interview process is extremely grueling at times and if you have not prepared well, you would suffer as a result. What PDPP does is provide a structured guidance to your preparation, boosts your confidence.

  • It channelizes your time and energy towards things that are important so that you maximize your time utilization.
  • It also taught me how to prepare for any interview in my life.
  • It tries to make you visualize the bigger picture. What do you want from MBA, from your life?
  • How would the new technologies impact the different sectors and how would you align your goals with respect to these massive changes. Trust me, this is one of the biggest differentiators between you and other candidates. While the rest of people would talk about present challenges, you would be talking about changes 10, 20 years later and how would you relate these technological changes with the present.
  • The biggest change in my personality was my confidence. I was so confident during my interviews due to my preparation that I was smiling throughout. I remember that I was shivering during the interviews last year. Such was the positive impact of PDPP on me.

PDPP may not ensure that you crack the interviews on the D day but it will definitely ensure that you are one of the best candidates to be interviewed that day.

Thank you Sreeni sir for all the guidance and help. I moved my life in the direction in which I wanted to and a big part goes to PDPP and you. It would seem to many people that I got selected and thus I am praising the programme. I would like to mention that my selection was inevitable because of the preparation that PDPP provided.

Regarding written exams, I took two test series. You can take any two though I would personally suggest CL to be one of the series  because of LRDI and VARC sections. In the months of April and May I solved CL booklets for CAT which really helped me clear all the doubts. From June, I started to take mock tests and sectional tests. If you are starting now, I would suggest you devote two months for covering all the topics. From August you should take full length mocks. Till December, I took around 45-50 full mock tests. It is important to clear all the doubts however small in the initial stages so that later you can devote your time strategizing and planning time management. For VARC, I studied Economic times, The Economist and Hindu editorials daily. The Economist really helped as it covered different topics. Quant is a matter of practice and LRDI is all about patience, practicing different sets and understanding the question under time pressure. I hope it helps future aspirants in some way.

Regards
Sourabh Shubham

Converts XLRI and SPJAIN 2019

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“Thanks CL. You made me a person capable of knowing Myself” – Ankit, XLRI Convert

A few days back in college, a couple of juniors asked me, “Which institute or site would you suggest for MBA entrance preparations?”

 

“If your aim is to just crack the entrance exams, many institutes can make you do that, but if your vision of success involves getting into a dream B-School and have a thrilling lifelong journey even after that, then join Career Launcher because at the end, its all about how better you know yourself and CL enables you to do that” I answered.

This advice of mine is based on the stellar learning experience I had with CL. The beauty of my journey with CL has been the individuality which I have felt during the guidance right from the starting of entrance preparations to getting into one of the top B-Schools of India.IMG_20190507_150342_449 And this is going to continue beyond that also, owing to the continued guidance I expect to get from my CL Gurus.

After getting the results for CAT & XAT, the next big question was how to prepare for the Group Discussions, Writing Ability Tests and (of course) the Interviews! I turned to Shreya Jain (Ex-CLite; IIM-C 2018-20; Mentored at CL CP centre) for advice, the person who provided me an amazing guidance throughout my preparation. Her exact words were “Just join CL PDP and attend the first two orientation classes including Introduction to PDP and Goal Setting (more than once if you can). Everything will itself be taken care for afterwards.”

I was a bit shocked at the second sentence, but I understood why she said that after first day of PDP. I was a bit confused till then regarding the interview preparation. It was like I knew what I had to do but didn’t know how to do that. I knew a bit about my strengths and weaknesses but didn’t know whether they were enough to overcome the challenge. I knew I was passionate about doing an MBA but was doubtful of my potential. What goes in an exam preparation is not just hard work and studies, its about the emotional sentiments which take toll on an otherwise calm mind. And it is these moments which are considered make-or-break. So of course there is a pressure (from your own expectations, family, friends and of course other candidates) in these conditions and at the same time, few fears also.

 

While all these thoughts were going in my mind I entered the CP centre for my first PDP interaction and the next three hours were extremely inspiring. It was taken by Sreeni sir and truly stays till now the class in which I have enjoyed the most and learned the most. Till then I had fears- some rational, some irrational. After that class, irrational ones disappeared and in their place in my mind came the solution to the rational ones. Three hours went like a breeze. When the class ended and I came out, I saw the transition of 70+ faces from confusion and anxiety to calmness and excitation! And it was a surprise that he did all that without talking about the need or the challenge of making it to the top B-Schools, instead he talked about various things like the concept of IKIGAI, Circle of Concern and Influence, Disruptions in different fields, etc ( and what inspired me the most was his friendship story and how they started CL together ). The result was that instead of thinking about how I will get into a good MBA college, I started planning for how I will achieve my overall goals in my life and it really made me again think about the positive opportunities I had instead of the imaginary challenges. I was inspired.

Next day turned out to be equally fascinating. The class was taken by GP sir. What happened at the end of his class was that the 70+ faces turned from calmness and excitation to confidence and happiness. The knowledge he imparted to all of us was not regarding what to tell the interviewer to get selected but what to do, to know ourselves so well that we could be at ease with ourselves and be natural (an advice which would be of great help entire life). The ease with which all students were able to connect with what he was saying was inspiring. “Our potential can be a great motivation to us if we put it in the right direction with clarity of thought” was my main lesson from his claIMG_20190507_150333_027ss.

The next couple of weeks of PDP programme were truly awesome and the chill morning weather of the CP made that even more special. Enlightening Group Discussions with great minds from diverse backgrounds under the guidance of passed outs from reputed B-Schools, WATs practice, everything improved my perspective by great measures. I never imagined that preparations could also be so enjoyable. The ease with which the whole programme was designed, the booking system for classes, slot bookings for interview and general discussions with mentor- was truly phenomenal. I felt CL was like a mini trailer of what life at a B-School would be. Exciting and full of Opportunities.

The mock interview and discussions with GP sir remain the most special moments of PDP programme. I still remember when after the end of my first interview, we were discussing about my story till then and my mock interview, he said, “What you are right now creates more impact than what you were during the interview. You need to be completely truthful regarding yourself.” And after that he listened to all my concerns patiently and gave great advices. When I came out of his cabin, I felt like I was re-introduced to myself in those 45 minutes. The thing for which I congratulate the CL most is that they don’t pick students and then tell them who they are, instead CL makes a person capable of knowing the “SELF” and understanding their true potential. The simplicity with which CL gurus do that is what makes all the difference and is the secret recipe for success of Clites. As the time is limited between results and Interview preparation, one needs a very customized guidance to bring out his/her best qualities forward and CL did exactly that for me as well as my friends.

So the conversion of XLRI call is not what I have achieved but what my family, friends and CL motivated me to achieve. A great mind is not great till it is focused in the right direction and that is what CL PDP does with its students. The best part of the CL is that in an era when most of the people see you as competition, it was the warmth in the atmosphere of the Career Launcher which made me truly happy.

Now about me- Wanted to do Economics Hons but ended up with a B.Tech in ECE. Passionate about Economics. Interested in Human Psychology. Reading newspaper since 10 years. XLRI’te HRM soon. A proud CLite. Looking forward to continue learning experience at XLRI and make the institute proud.

Ankit Thakur

XLRI convert – 2019-21

Now I know – who am I, what I want to be and how to get there – Happy Kukreja, XLRI entrant

How has the personalized mentoring in PDPP facilitated you ? How did that impact you, in what all ways?

Has it enabled you to create a compelling vision for life? Have you got reasonable amount of clarity of the path?

As all lost souls in pursuit of a guide, I knocked on the doors of Career Launcher, three months back, when I needed guidance and counsel for business school interviews. To be honest, I was a bit skeptical at first, and rightly so, I was entrusting myHappy IMG_7766 future, in the hands of strangers. Three months later, I can comfortably say, it was a good decision.

The scope of PDP personalised, as a programme, is too broad to simply write it off as an interview preparation tool. It allowed me to understand the ins and outs of my individuality. It started with the 10 questions, every PDPP student has to answer. They included simple, yet stimulating questions, like, ‘Who are you?’ and ‘What is your biggest achievement in life?’. These questions required a lot of introspection and contemplation on my end, as a result I was able to fully understand my individuality, my strengths, and my areas of improvement.

Now, this is something that one could do himself, how did PDPP help in this, one might wonder. Well, it was the gurus at Career Launcher, that enabled me to turn these strengths and weaknesses into instruments of impact in the B-school interviews.

How an ability to write a book can be turned into convincing evidence of superior leadership and management skills? Ask a CL guru, and prepared to be awed! This is indeed the best part. I wasn’t treated as just another student. I was treated as an individual, with unique strengths and weaknesses, and trained to turn my qualities into ammunition, to convince the interviewers.

Next, we come to the story. Every B-school interviewer looks for commitment towards a specific career in the aspirants. This is where all the interviewees need to have a story, a perfect chain of events, that point to the reason of going for MBA, and the specialisation one prefers. This is another area where a personalised story, based on my work ex, courses, certifications and academic record, was curated by CL gurus.

Another aspect of b-school interviews is the group discussions. A lot of top institutes across India, make GDs a part of the selection process. At PDPP, I got a chance to taste the cut throat competition beforehand by participating in over 10 GD workshops.

Another part of the selection process is the writing aptitude test. In the PDPP, I was able to take mock WATs and understood, what the business schools are looking for.

Apart from all this, I always had a mentor just a phone call away. Every doubt, query, was resolved within minutes. It is indeed an overwhelming privilege to be mentored by IIM alums on your way to IIMs.

In a nutshell, PDPP provided me a 360° view of business school selection process. From the story to interview etiquette to GDs and WATs to highlighting strengths and using weaknesses to further improve the chances of selection, I got great insights into everything.

But above all, it helped me, understand the different spheres of my personality. An in-depth understanding of my passions, interests, values, strengths and weaknesses, allowed me to fulfil the very purpose of the existence of knowledge and education, understanding thyself, and designing your life accordingly.

This has become a pragmatic reality because of the numerous interactions I had with CL gurus, who themselves, have a huge body of experience and expertise. In the personal interactions, I had with them, I was introduced to a world of possibilities, and different paths that lie ahead in life for me, the pros and cons of each, and most importantly, I was equipped with the knowledge and wisdom to decide, which path to venture upon in the journey of life.

I now have an understanding of the kind of person I am, both personally and professionally, and kind of person I want to be and how to get there!

Happy Kukreja

XLRI convert, 2019-21

Dream It, Do It! Think Big, Start Small! – Arif Hussain’s (a Vet from Kishtwar, J&K) remarkable plunge

Arif Hussain, a veterinarian from Kishtwar; an MBA from GIM selected through XLRI entrance

It was in early 2011, when I was in Jammu to address the youth of J&K motivating to chase their dreams and not be afraid of failure, I met a young man, Arif Hussain. At the end of the session he wanted to share how a similar session a year ago made an impact on him.

Arif finished his degree in veterinary sciences and was at crossroads. Like most of the youth of J&K, all his friends were looking for government jobs, as they feel that gives security. Even in the volatile times of Kashmir, those in the government jobs continued to get their salaries, where as those working in private sector were impacted! So none would want to venture into the private enterprise space. Though government jobs were hard to come by, government, to make their ends meet, was recruiting for temporary assignments. Arif wanted to do something different and not succumb to these possibilities.

Arif chanced upon an advertisement for a short term programme by J&K government on creating a SME (Small and Medium enterprises). He applied for it and got selected to be part of the programme. He got a lot of ideas that stoked his desire to do something ‘different’

Being a Vet, he probed a little more on one of the ideas that struck him. A predominantly non-vegetarian state, J&K imports over 1000cr worth of poultry! Why not create poultry farm? He does significant ground work to launch his poultry farm in Kishtwar with an investment of Rs.1.5 Lakh. His sessions on SME helped him to understand how to apply and get the project funded by the government that is encouraging entrepreneurs. So ninety percent of his project costs were funded by govt.

He started procuring broilers from Punjab, that become fully grown FOWL n 45 days. The economies work to something of this sort –

– Broilers cost about Rs 18 when they land in Kishtwar
– It takes another 20-30 Rupees for feed & maintenance for every broiler in those 45 days
– The fully grown FOWL is picked up by the butchers at Rs. 200/- a piece

So, in no time, Arif started clocking revenues of 3-4 Lakhs a month, with at least 40-50% margin.

Arif soon realized that this is going to be a very profitable venture and would love to grow the business across J&K and not limit to Kishtwar.

When Arif met me, he had a call from XLRI. He was a worried man, in the sense, what should he do to convert the call. We had a long discussion on how he can present his vision and the execution plan to the panel etc. Soon, I got a good news that he has received the final call and that he would join XLRI/GIM.

In 2013, Arif would have graduated with an MBA from XLRI/GIM and on his way to realizing his bigger dreams. Looking forward to meeting him soon. Arif, where are you?

If you have a dream, chase it. Do not be afraid of failure. I always found many mentors, well wishers and facilitators coming my way the moment I was determined to make any of my dreams happen. I often remember Paulo Coelho’s Alchemist, when I embark on realizing my next dream – “that the world will conjure to make your dreams come true”

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