This interview is the latest in an Accepted.com blog series featuring interviews with MBA applicant bloggers, offering readers a behind-the-scenes look at the MBA application process. And now…introducing our anonymous blogger, ProGMAT…
Accepted: We’d like to get to know you! Where are you from? Where and what did you study as an undergrad? What’s your favourite non-school book?
ProGMAT: I am 26 years old, and was born in a small town in North India. Being a son of a Sr. Bank Manager, I moved to different cities with my family and completed my schooling. I’ve completed my under-graduation (B.Tech) in Computer Science Engineering from a city away from my home in Northern India.
As I grew watching my father, how he managed a great number of staff under him, I always wanted to be like him and always tried to get the things done with better management. My interests are more of design, creativity, innovation, management and music. At my work, I always try to get the maximum amount of management work I can get other than my duties (coding, testing, etc.).
I have not read many books but the recent one was The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, and I really liked it. It is great classic fiction with nice vocabulary to learn.
Accepted: What stage of the application process are you up to so far?
ProGMAT: Currently I am studying for the GMAT and writing my story side by side. I am not rushing through the application process as I have less time to study for GMAT, and my target score is 720+.
Accepted: Where and when are you planning on applying to b-school? Are you applying to any safety schools?
ProGMAT: The sooner I complete my GMAT, the better my chances are to apply this year in Round 2 process. That is why for now my complete focus is on GMAT, but I am comfortable in applying next year. After my research on schools and course types, I have a list of schools to which I would be applying including Tuck and ISB. I will also apply to 3-4 additional schools within my range for safe side.
Tuck is the best school I have known so far according to my priorities and eligibility. I dream about being a Tuckie. So in my application process, my major focus would be on the Tuck application. And for ISB, it gives me various advantages above all in terms of investment and environment (a plus point for my career and future).
Accepted: What is your current job? Do you plan on staying in the same industry post-MBA or moving to something new? Where do you hope to be in 5-10 years from now?
ProGMAT: Currently I’m working in a Fortune 500 Company as a software developer in India. I have a total of 3+ years of experience in coding as well as management. Post MBA I would change my industry. Basically I am looking for a Consultant badge under my profile. So my short term goal is to be at a Consultant position in Big 4 firms. And my long term goal is to open my own firm. It will be related to technology for sure, but depends on the position of the market.
Accepted: In your blog you talk about your GMAT game plan — can you share a few tips with our readers about how to prep for the GMAT?
ProGMAT: GMAT is not an exam to pass and score higher. It’s all about your time management and stress management. The best thing to do while attempting a question is to get into the situation and find the best solution as fast as possible. As it is a game of time and stress, huge dedication is needed to get through it. The best thing you can do while preparing is practice, practice and practice.
A few tips:
1. Study the basics by going deep and learning the concepts.
2. Study the type of questions which come frequently on GMAT.
3. Always time your practice questions. And always try to use the official material for practice.
4. For SC, there is limited number of rules. Learn them and apply.
5. For CR and RC, try to read the quality material and increase your reading speed with understanding.
6. The more you focus on the current question, the less time you take to solve it. This makes better chances of your high score.
Accepted: Why did you decide to blog about your experience? What have you gained from the experience? What do you hope others will learn?
ProGMAT: When I started my GMAT circus, I thought it was just like another exam, but a few days later I realized that it’s not an exam but a game like marathon. I studied different blogs and found that most of the people were suffering with similar problems. So I decided to keep track of this important event of my life that would help me to be in line and would help others who are facing similar problems as I do.
What I gained is the timeline of my preparation as well as more focus on the mistakes that I made earlier. Additionally, I am a non-native English speaker, so writing a blog will help me gain knowledge on the writing side as well. And meeting the fellow blog writers who are going through the same situation always gives you confidence to move forward.
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You can read more about ProGMAT’s b-school journey by checking out his blog, Pro GMAT. Thank you for sharing your story with us – we wish you loads of luck!