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Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates

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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 22 May 2011, 23:00
Hi Sameer, thanks for your advice. An international PhD is my first choice - but, as you have also advised, I am keeping IIMs as back-up.

Regards,
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 24 May 2011, 23:07
Tuck MBA: How cool Mukul (with a GMAT score 2 make u drool) got into bschool
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Yo peeps, wassup! If the rap-worthy title of this post sounds poetic, Mukul’s journey was far from it. Despite a huge GMAT score of 770, there was still a big white ‘Gap’ in his story (yeah my friend…more T-shirt wisdom comin’ your way). In the race to get into the b-school of his choice he stumbled and fell – not once but twice. But he got up, dusted himself and got back into the race…more determined than ever to get what he wanted. We can’t compete with the massage parlours in Bangkok, but many of our stories do tend to be therapeutic and they also have a happy ending. Mukul’s inpiring story is one of those...Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 26 May 2011, 22:22
muditc wrote:
Hi Sameer, thanks for your advice. An international PhD is my first choice - but, as you have also advised, I am keeping IIMs as back-up.

Regards,

You are welcome, buddy. Good luck to you.

Do share you experience on this thread, so others in the same boat can benefit.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 26 May 2011, 22:26
Deep Dey shares his experience after the Mock Application Process

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"The entire Mock Application Process was an eye-opener for me and I really appreciate Sameer for his honest and insightful views that gave the much needed form and direction to my MBA application.

To be frank, initially i thought the MCB report will just help me in school selection; however it turned out to be much more that. Apart from understanding the rationale behind the schools classification, Sameer gave me valuable advice on how to achieve clarity in your goals and rise beyond the cliches with respect to regular B school questions.

I now feel much more confident and self-aware. Last but not the least, Sameer's unflinching commitment to the value of this service is indeed commendable. So, if you really want an unbiased assessment and sound advice to kickstart your MBA application, Sameer is your man!"


Read more real and verifiable testimonials
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Last edited by MBACrystalBall on 09 Jul 2011, 22:23, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 30 May 2011, 14:30
Hi Sameer,

I am a recent graduate from IT-BHU and will start working as an analyst in a business analytics firm. I am planning to apply at the top MBA programs for the matriculating class of 2015/16. Since I have enough time to build my profile so I would like to micro-analyse every aspect of it to increase my chances of getting into my dream schools.

The very first issue which I need to address is my undergrad GPA. I finally have 8/10 on absolute scale with overall rank second/third (final results awaited) but my math grades in freshman and sophomore years were a complete disaster (reason: few distractions and ECs). Although I did extremely well during the subsequent years to make it up but Adcom is certainly going to notice my poor performance in basic math courses. Do you think AdCom can be convinced that I can handle the academic rigour of the program, if I highlight following points in my application:

1. IIT-JEE qualified so capable of handling the quantitative rigour of the program.
2. high score in the quant section of GMAT (certainly not a problem)
3. masters project (dual degree) was based on stochastic and probabilistic modeling coupled with an international internship.
4. working in business analytics field which itself is a math intensive profile.

It would be great to have some additional pointers on this, like some additional courses if available in India, e.g. Business Mathematics, to cover it up. One more thing, when should I take GMAT, i.e. now or 2-3 years later?

Please excuse me for writing a long post for a relatively minuscule problem but I really want everything to be perfect when I send my applications (little irrational to say but still )


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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 03 Jun 2011, 05:05
Investment Banking 101: What is Ibanking?

Investment Banking is a field that generates a lot of interest, but for most outsiders, it is also shrouded in mystery. The conventional image of an Ibanker is a young, ambitious guy in a pin-striped designer suit puffing on a Cuban cigar after closing a deal. Well, ok, maybe Ajit (‘Loin‘) from the 70s Bollywood movies had the same image. But Loins’ IQ, drive and his financial skills would pale in comparison to the Ibanker breed we are talking about here.

But not all investment bankers spend 100-hour weeks chasing money. There are also quite a few kind-hearted ones who want to help others understand this esoteric field. We discovered one such exceptional star to help us make sense of an opaque and largely misunderstood industry… Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 05 Jun 2011, 10:30
Very insightful. Thank you.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2011, 00:38
5 movies MBA aspirants must watch, which do not feature Rajni Sir

CollegeKumar is back! For those who don’t know him, he had written a guest post for us about GMAT Preparation Tips that actually make sense. Then he disappeared from the scene, only to re-surface on another post ('10 bschools to have on your radar'). Unfortunately, those comments ended up ruffling a few feathers. After seeing the backlash, Shri Kumar decided it was time to calm the nerves and emotions a little. Read on for his recommendations on 5 movies every MBA applicant must watch.… Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 11 Jun 2011, 00:48
Marquis wrote:
Hi Sameer,
:
Since I have enough time to build my profile so I would like to micro-analyse every aspect of it to increase my chances of getting into my dream schools.

Not a good idea to approach it in that manner, Marquis. A checklist approach doesn't work in MBA applications. At best it'll appear mechanical and in the worst case it may backfire if you go overboard with it.

Allow your profile to develop naturally. With time you'll get plenty of opportunities to do well in whatever sphere you are in. Grab those opportunities and try to seek out other areas outside work where you can contribute.

Marquis wrote:
Do you think AdCom can be convinced that I can handle the academic rigour of the program, if I highlight following points in my application:

1. IIT-JEE qualified so capable of handling the quantitative rigour of the program.
2. high score in the quant section of GMAT (certainly not a problem)
3. masters project (dual degree) was based on stochastic and probabilistic modeling coupled with an international internship.
4. working in business analytics field which itself is a math intensive profile.

All 4 points are perfect to show that the low undergrad scores were an anomaly. You are worrying unncessarily.

Marquis wrote:
It would be great to have some additional pointers on this, like some additional courses if available in India, e.g. Business Mathematics, to cover it up.

I don't think you should focus on that one issue. Instead, focus your energies in developing the rest of your profile. The big picture is more important than how much you score in 1-2 subjects in your undergrad.

Marquis wrote:
One more thing, when should I take GMAT, i.e. now or 2-3 years later?

Take it a year before you are ready to apply. That way you won't be under pressure to perform and if needed you can take a few extra stabs at the test before you submit your applications.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 14 Jun 2011, 21:32
International MBA program vs Indian MBA (read ISB Hyderabad)

Image

Should you choose an Indian MBA program over an international MBA college or Ivy League university?

What does it mean from an RoI and post MBA career perspective?

Last unrelated question: What do you see in the photo?

Option 1: An anaconda slowly tighting its grip around an unsuspecting victim’s neck

Option 2: A happy Indian dude who has managed to address the Indian MBA vs International MBA dilemma.

If you chose Option 1, your visualisation potential makes you fit to be in creative role and you might be wasting your time aiming for an MBA program. If you chose option 2, accept our sympathies and read on.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 23 Jun 2011, 08:08
Investment Banking 101: Coverage, Products & Advisory – Part I

If you are trying to find out how to get an investment banking job, your best bet is to first understand the basics. What is investment banking? What do Ibankers do? Why is Ibanking such a hot post-MBA destination? Which fairness cream do investment bankers use?

Our resident MCB Investment Banker or MIB as we call him started a series to explain just that. His first post (‘What is Ibanking‘) set the ball rolling. If you missed it, read that first before you continue with this next article in our Investment Banking 101 Series. … Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 25 Jun 2011, 22:00
Interview with Guy Kawasaki | Entrepreneur, Venture Capitalist, Author (Enchantment)

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Guy Kawasaki has been there, done that, several times over. He shot into the limelight in the mid eighties as the evangelist for Apple’s Macintosh. After a brilliant track record there, he moved on to become a successful serial entrepreneur launching technology businesses ranging from databases (4th Dimension) to content aggregating websites such as Alltop.com. Guy has a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA as well as an honorary doctorate from Babson College.

When he’s not thinking of innovative business models to launch, in his venture capitalist avatar at Garage Technology Ventures, he funds other businesses that catch his fancy. His Midas-touch mantra is unconventional – “Whatever is gold, Guy touches.”

Guy has written 10 books and his latest – Enchantment – is a New York Times bestseller. In this freewheeling chat with Sameer Kamat from MBA Crystal Ball, he talks about his career, his motivations and his new book. ...read more
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 05 Jul 2011, 23:02
Entrepreneur & MBA aspirant Shipra’s 5-C Model

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We generally don’t post testimonials on the blog, though we do have a bunch of them on our main site. But this one is a little hat-ke and we thought we should share it with you. When Shipra was revelling in her euphoric post MBA MAP phase, we asked her if she’s be willing to share some feedback about her experience. We’ve already got several feel-good testimonials (all genuine, by the way) on our MBA Crystal Ball Facebook page. So we thought Shipra would do something similar. Instead, what we got was an elaborate 5-C Model that could give Michael Porter (and his 5-Force Framework) a run for his money...Read more
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 09 Jul 2011, 22:02
6 Tips to overcome GMAT test anxiety

Question: Name 2 emotions that Ram Gopal Verma’s horror movies fail to elicit, while GMAT unintentionally succeeds.
Answer: Fear and Anxiety

A lot of us experience anxiety whenever we take up a new task or are subject to an unfamiliar environment. In the GMAT test, considering that the stakes are high, it is common to suffer from test anxiety which is likely to adversely affect your output. Anxiety management may not completely take care of the pre-test jitters but can surely go a long way towards reducing your stress and improving your performance. Here are a few tips that may prove handy: 1. Be confident It is good to aim high however remember that the GMAT is not the only qualifying criteria to get into a good B-school. You can work harder on the other … Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 16 Jul 2011, 02:23
Shreya Kundu on the MBA MAP

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MCB's MAP was an eye opener for me too. It gave a me a lot of insight about the process of how a B school would like to select its future candidate.

Sameer's feedback on the interview was very candid which has given me a lot of confidence and the know how to start with the application and essay writing process. What I liked the most was the proactiveness with which Sameer did the entire process. I am glad that I went through the process because now I feel more equipped.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 18 Jul 2011, 03:25
Hi Sameer,

My requirement is slightly different. I want to apply for PhD is Supply chain in US. Please evaluate my profile and give me an honest advice on the schools that I should target.

After Ph D, I want to go for teaching profession.

GMAT : 670

Total Work Exp: 17 years

Work Domain :1) I started my career with L&T, a private company and worked for two years on thermal power construction site.
2) I have been working with Indian Railways in its materials management divisions for the last 15 years at different positions and places. During these years I have worked in field looking after planning, receipt and distribution of materials to actual consumers as well as in corporate office looking after procurement, sourcing, inventory management etc. Presently, I am looking after innovation, system improvement etc in our internal system to increase transparency, equity and fairness in our supply chain.

Gender - Male
Age - 42 years
Nationality - Indian

Education Details :
M. A. in Public Policy and Sustainable Development- Teri university, New Delhi, 2010, A Grade
M Tech in Environmental management , IIT Roorke, India, 2006, Top 5 in class (72%)
B.E. Civil Engineering NIT Trichy, India, 1991 Top 5 in class (82%)
XII-63%
X-71%


ECs:
have won first prize in National Student Design Competetion-1991
General Secretary of Entrepreneurship Development Cell, NIT Trichy 1990-1991
Executive Member, Roorkee University Student Association 2004-05
Have been involved in executive function for Bharat scout and guide, Northern Railway State unit.


My queries:
• Can I secure admission with this score and profile in ISB, India (Fellow program) or any other US university with scholarship?

* Which university should I apply?

Regards,
Sanjay
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 18 Jul 2011, 15:01
Hi,

Firstly thanks for your time and guidance. Please have a look at my profile and send me your valuable suggestions/comments:


Indian, Male, Age: 27

GMAT 730, (Q49, 86%ile), (V40, 89%ile), (AWA 5.0)

Academic:

Undergrad: Civil Engg, IIT Madras, GPA: 7.32/10,
Masters: Transportation Engg, Texas A&M University, Major GPA 4.0/4.0 (Total 3.9/4.0)
Graduate Certificate in Business, GPA 3.75/4.0, Mays Business School, Texas A&M University (This is kind of a Minor. with a total of 4 courses, 12 credits).

Certifications:

CFA Level 3 Candidate.
Professional Engineer, State of California.


Work experience details:

Full Time (Close to 4 years by Aug 2012), Dept. of Transportation, CA
July 2011 to Present, Associate Project Manager
July 2009 to June 2011, Assistant Project Engineer
Nov 2009 to June 2010, Assistant Project Manager
Oct 2008 to Oct 2009, Transportation Engineer

Part Time ( 2 yrs, 20 hrs per week), Texas Transportation Institute, TX
Sep 2006 to Aug 2008, Research Assistant


Pre - MBA work experience areas : Infrastructure Engineering, and Project Management
After - MBA plans: Short-Term: Infrastructure/Project Finance, Long Term: Investment Management and Private Equity.


Potential Points To Be Highlighted In Essays:

From Professional Life:

● Supervised a politically highly sensitive project which was among the first few projects funded by Obama’s $ 40 B infrastructure stimulus package of 2008. Project became very crucial as it was allotted to a contractor with criminal history, and the whole crew was very less experienced (had to contract out the project to that company because of the reservation limitations). I took over and lead the project after the Senior Engineer who was supposed to lead that project left with in the first quarter of the project as he found it very difficult to manage the contractor and his crew.
● Saved close to $1.5 Million on a highway construction project by coming up with few innovative approaches to deal with unexpected issues raised during the project.
● Developed new data analysis methods which are now followed by our whole project mgmt group.
● Among the youngest in the department to receive a professional engineer license and consequently to authorize State projects.
● Worked on the Caldecott Tunnel Project ( a $ 420 million project, Nation’s second largest highway project supported by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 )


From Personal Life:

● the way me, my education, and my career progression stood up as a good example and inspiration for many kids in my village and neighboring villages.
● my commitment to make sure that no kid from my village would drop out of school (until at least primary school) due to the lack of financial resources or guidance. Did set up a Fund to fund their primary school education.
● involvement with several child education related activities through CSECC (California State Employees Charitable Campaign), CRY (Child Rights and You), and AID (Aid for India’s Development)

Other:

● Worked on a start up “Biglifeindia”. Idea was to generate superior returns on the investor’s investments by pooling and investing them in growing sectors like infrastructure development, real estate, large-scale agriculture etc, in India. Temporarily suspended the project because of unfavorable political developments and consequent new regulations (Andhra Pradesh Micro Finance Institutions Act, 2010).

Target Schools:
R1: Booth, Columbia, Wharton or Harvard, MIT or LBS
R2: Wharton/Harvard, MIT/LBS, Haas, Anderson, McCombs.


Please send me your valuable suggestions and comments regarding my following concerns:

1) At which of my targeted schools, do I have a decent chance to put a competitive application?

2) Is it worth retaking GMAT, given that I am confident of increasing the score from 730 to 750: both from admits perspective and scholarships perspective.

3) Given that I have time to apply only one of either Wharton or Harvard, also either MIT or LBS in first round, is there any advantage of picking one school over other in R1 vs R2.

4) Areas where I should specifically concentrate to make my application more competitive at my targeted schools.


Thanks a lot for your time and help.

Ram
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 18 Jul 2011, 18:02
Hi

Thanks a lot for all the work you are doing here. It is really very helpful.

It would be great if you can evaluate my profile:

Indian, Male Age-27

GMAT
710 (49 QA, 35 VA) AWA 5.0

Academics
B. Tech, Indian Institute of Information Technology, Allahabad (6.93/10) – 2003 -2007
CFA Level 3 Candidate
Technical certifications from IBM & Sun Microsystems

Professional Experience
Full Time from July, 2007. Will be around 5 years in August 2012.
December 2008 – Present – Business Analyst
December 2008 – July 2007 Software Engineer

Business Analyst at Royal Bank of Scotland (December 2008 – Present)
Functional Areas – Corporate Markets

Highlights
• Managed business software requirements for 3 projects, totaling to £ 25 million.
• One of the youngest B.A at RBS. Skip level promotion from Software Associate to BA.
• Assessed & Reformed organizational processes through a Work-Out initiative, leading to savings of £ 200,000.
• Estimated & formulated business cases for various corporate transformation programmes. These transformation programmes were introduced as an aftermath of global financial crisis in 2008.
• Led a team of software developers to deliver a critical solution for automation of account opening process targeted at Business & Commercial customers.
• Established and fostered relationships with various business and technology stakeholders. First to be selected out of my team in India to work on-site with business stakeholders in London & Wimbledon.
• Imparted domain based trainings to software developers and project managers.

Software developer at Sapient Corporation (July 2007 – December 2008)
Functional Areas – Retail Banking & Telecom Billing

Highlights
• Led a work stream during the training project.
• Designed and developed software components for an online broadband provisioning system for a large telecom client.
• Raised Rs. 200,000 for young students as part of charity drive at Sapient Corp.

Personal Life
Born and brought up in a small town, not a lot was expected of me. I come from a traditional family with business background where the usual expectation is to enter the family business. By breaking the mould, I have set an example for children of my family to follow their instincts and interests.

Short-term & Long-term Goals

Short-term
Want to move to the front office (customer facing) job in portfolio management. Having done my share of software coding and business requirement analysis, I feel a front office or customer facing job will provide me the needed knowledge required to produce new software for the portfolio management domain.

Long-term
I want to set-up my own company which will focus on development of new and innovative software’s for portfolio management. I want to start with products targeted at corporate customers and then extend these to retail customers. I wish to provide low-cost portfolio management services to mass consumers for e.g. the growing middle-class in India.

Target Schools
R1 - Booth , Columbia , Duke, Darden & Kenan Flager
R2 - Wharton , Kellogg ,Ross , NYU Stern & McCombs
R3 - None

I havent decided on the non-US schools but I am primarily considering ISB , NUS and INSEAD.

Will be very beneficial if you can respond to my following queries:

1. How do you evaluate my profile? ( My goal is to get in any of the top 15 colleges. Primary focus is on school which is good in finance)

2. My GPA is pretty low ( 6.93/10). How is this compared to applicants from a similar background. Is my GPA insufficient or a negative point?

3. Is my GMAT score weak? How much is the benefit of retaking the GMAT given that I may increase my score from 20-30 points only.

4. Is my selection of schools too ambitious? Which schools would you suggest as the top priority?

5. What areas should I concentrate in my profile to make it strong? What are the corresponding weaknesses that you see in my profile?

Thanks a lot for your time and help.

Regards
Sameer
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2011, 20:34
MBA Jobs – How to choose a post-MBA career goal

If your reason for pursuing an MBA is to spice up your career and give it a new direction, vigour and vitality (is that sounding like one of those shady ayurvedic aphrodisiac advertisements?), it would help if you spend some time to decide which way you would like to take it. And do that before you start your MBA application, so Admission Committees (Adcoms) know you’ve done your homework. If you have no clue about it, here’s a general framework that you can use to structure your thoughts.… Read entire article »
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates [#permalink] New post 21 Jul 2011, 22:10
sanjayviti wrote:
I want to apply for PhD is Supply chain in US. Please evaluate my profile and give me an honest advice on the schools that I should target. After Ph D, I want to go for teaching profession.

GMAT : 670 , Total Work Exp: 17 years
:
My queries:
• Can I secure admission with this score and profile in ISB, India (Fellow program) or any other US university with scholarship?

Hi Sanjay,

The application evaluation process for PhD programs is different from a regular MBA program. But the essential principles don't change. You'd still need to demonstrate that you were/are excellent in most of the things you've undertaken. However, in contrast to a regular MBA, when it comes to doctoral options, there's a greater emphasis on academics (and I'd club GMAT into that category). Also, you'd need to be able to communicate your strong desire to get into the teaching profession. So think of a good answer to queries like 'why/how did you develop an interest in teaching after 17 yrs of work-ex'.

Just like it's MBA program, the Fellow program at ISB is also very competitive. 670 could be a hurdle to cross.
Many of the top US schools also offer good PhD programs, but there the competition is global, so no cakewalk.

Having said all that, you could start off by looking at Smeal's PhD program at Penn State university. Strong in Supply Chain and once of the good (not great) brands that will not be as difficult to crack into.

If you need help along the way, drop us an email.
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Re: Ask MBA Crystal Ball - Indian Candidates   [#permalink] 21 Jul 2011, 22:10
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