Looking Back...

Friday, June 5, 2015

You know what they say, hindsight is always 20/20. The past one year has been an incredible journey. There have been some truly enjoyable moments, and there’ve been learnings. Looking back, I wanted to share the three things that I wish I had known starting out.

Networking: Coming from a country and a job market where terms such as “fit” were alien, I took some time to come to terms with this whole concept of networking. And by the end of the first year, I’ve realized how powerful this tool is if used right. My biggest learning has been that if you’re truly interested in a particular industry/function, the interest shines through, and networking with the right people opens doors. If you’re just networking because your classmates are doing it however, it doesn’t matter if you connect with 3 or 30 people from a company, the doors will remain sealed. 

Being authentic: Along with classes going on at breakneck pace, there was the added pressure of finding an internship. Like a lot of first-years, I was guilty too of speaking with anybody who was willing to connect with me, in spite of me not being a 100% committed to the role or the company. One of my discussions with a second year in November made me realize what I’d been doing wrong. Instead of randomly connecting with people, I followed the second-year’s advice to “be authentic” and focused on only those companies that excited me.  The quality of my interactions improved tremendously, and I was able to secure interviews with my dream companies! 

Time management: Personally, my strong belief is that how well one manages one’s time is what determines the extent of success in the MBA program. There are countless activities and classes that you can choose to immerse yourself in. Being strategic about how you allot your time will definitely make your life that much easier.

Bottom-line, speak to as many people as possible to figure out what you want, early-on. And be strategic about how you use your most precious resource, your time, to achieve your goals.

Until next time.