CAT 2016 Topper Interview: Start preparation early to overcome weak areas, says 100 percentiler Akshay Mehndiratta
Updated on Jan 11, 2017 - 1:17 p.m. IST by Richa Kapoor
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CAT topper Akshay Mehndiratta, owes his incredible 100 percentile to a meticulously planned preparation routine, managed skillfully along with his hectic work schedule. In this interview with Careers360, Akshay, also a graphic designing enthusiast, shares his CAT experience and preparation strategies to support future CAT takers.

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A chemical engineer from IIT Delhi, Akshay devoted his weekends to clearing his concepts as well as taking mock tests. He now aspires to get through IIM Ahmedabad to pursue his MBA in Finance.

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Read the excerpts of the interview:


Careers 360: Congratulations! How are you celebrating? Were you expecting this score?

Akshay: Thank you! It is indeed an achievement, but still, there is a long way to go before I can reap the rewards of my results. Currently, my focus is to clear the WAT and PI rounds. I do have a big celebration scheduled for the weekend. I was expecting a good percentile, somewhere in the range of 99.7 and more, but getting the perfect percentile was like a golden moment for me.

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Careers 360: What is your sectional and overall percentile?

Akshay: In the Verbal Ability section, I got 99.80 percentile, 100 percentile in LRDI and in QA it is 99.75 percentile.


Careers 360: How was your exam taking experience? Which were the toughest and weakest sections according to you?

Akshay: My initial thoughts were that the test did not go as per my expectations since I considered Quantitative Ability as my biggest strength and I had missed quite a lot of questions. This was not the case while I was taking the mock tests. After going through the reviews of the exam, I realised that I had done fairly well. Verbal Ability was the easiest of all the sections.


Careers 360: How did you prepare for CAT? Did you opt for mock tests? How much time did you give for your preparation?

Akshay: Since I am working, I used to get time to prepare only during weekends. I used to work on the Verbal Ability section and other weak areas on Saturday. On Sundays, I used to take mock tests and analyse it comprehensively. I followed this routine from June onwards.


Careers 360: Which is your preferred IIM? Which specialisation are you interested in?

Akshay:  I aspire to get admission in IIM Ahmedabad. Though it is too early to say anything, but fingers crossed. I would like to have a specialisation in Finance.


Careers 360: How is your preparation for the next rounds of admission?

Akshay: For the future rounds, I have enrolled with some of the coaching institutes. There are still two months left for the interview process to commence. I have a fair idea about the process from my classes. Let’s see how it works out.


Careers 360: Were you active on social websites during your preparation?

Akshay: I was quite active on the social media platforms as it helped me to de-stress. I was active on Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp.


Careers 360: What are the tips that you would like to give those who plan to take up CAT the coming year?

Akshay: It is important to identify your weak areas as early as possible and start working on it. In the initial days of preparation use some good materials. Once you start taking the mock exams and test series, then there should be improvement. Take as many mock tests as possible as it will help in maintaining consistency, devising correct strategy and improving accuracy.




Also Read
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Stay tuned to for more CAT 2016 Topper Interviews.

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Showing 8121 out of 8121 Questions

I got 8.6 cgpa in class 10, 77% in class 12 and 7.8 cgpa in my graduation and I am expecting my percentile around 90 in CAT. so what are chances to get a call from IIMs and other top MBA colleges?

Harshita Sharan Srivastava Student Expert 17th Feb, 2020
Hello aspirant,

  • As per the details provided by you, your academics are average for selection into iims. And with 90 percentile it's very difficult for you to get a call from top IIMs. Although you can get calls from new IIMs but the chances are pretty low.. Even don't expect to get call from IITs at 90 percentile.. If you are planning to get into top MBA Institutes then I'll recommend you to sit for another attempt..otherwise you can also take following colleges:
  • Welingkar Mumbai
  • Tapmi
  • Bimtec
  • DTU

All the best

is there any scholorship available for cat top scrores

Shareef 17th Feb, 2020

GITAM Hyderabad Business School has no scholarship facilities for students who have been toppers. CAT is not only the entrance exam that is accepted in this college so CAT toppers or any exam toppers for MBA entrance exam do not get any scholarships. But Gitam College, Visakhapatnam offers merit scholarships and you can check them at:


i would like to know how many times i can give cat exam?

Harshita Sharan Srivastava Student Expert 17th Feb, 2020
Hello aspirant,
You can appear for cat entrance exam as many times you want. The minimum eligibility criteria for appearing in cat exam is as follows:-
In order to be eligible for the CAT Exam, the candidate has to pass at least their Bachelor's degree with at least 50% (for General Category and for candidates from the NC-OBC caste). For SC/ST and Differently Abled (DA) candidates, the percentage required is 45%.

All the best

I am a CAT aspirant & have appeared for CAT, XAT,& SNAP & scored 90%ile. With acads 10th-7.4CGPA, 12th-82% & in graduation(2018)-64% with no work experience due to family problem. Would I able to secure a seat in good college? I have been shortlisted for TAPMI, FORE, IIMV for round one till now.

Manidipa Kundu Student Expert 17th Feb, 2020


its true that iims and some of other top ranked institute shortlisted candidates as per their academic record and  cat or any other management aptitude  test score. see right now which of institute name you have mentioned is also comes under tier 1 college. now you need to focus on your presentation skills, communication approach  to get shortlisted in final rounds. so keep calm and focus on your goal, I think you will surely crack it.


dear sir, I have 67 percentile bin cat, which colleges should I apply??

Shiksha 16th Feb, 2020


You can target a few average collges like IBS Hyderabad, mdi murshidabad, amity noida, NBS Ahmedabad, ITM navi mumbai (good colleges)

Others are: vit vellore, isbr pune, ndim delhi, pibm pune, aims banglore, mit pune, ims ghaziabad, etc

For more colleges visit below link:

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