CAT Topper Interview: How Sneha Mittal cracked CAT to secure admission offers from 5 IIMs, XIMB, TISS
Sneha Mittal cracked CAT to secure admission offers from many top B-schools including 5 IIMs, XIMB, TISS among others.
An Engineering graduate, Sneha prepared for CAT while working for Cognizant Technology. In this special series of CAT Topper Interview, Sneha shares her preparation strategy, time management secrets and elaborates on her successful journey to Indian Institute of Management (IIM).
In this interview with Careers360, Sneha also speaks on entrepreneurial ambitions and what motivated her to join an MBA programme.
Careers360: What is your academic background? Please also tell us about your work experience.
Sneha Mittal: I did B.E. Electronics and Telecommunications from MIT, Pune. I also worked with Cognizant Technology Solutions in its Digital Media Marketing function for 7 months.
Careers360: What was your main objective behind pursuing MBA? What are your aspirations?
Sneha Mittal: I am an aspiring entrepreneur with a keen interest in the field of marketing. I wanted to network with the best minds around the country and what better opportunity than to study at one of the top B-schools.Through MBA I aim to hone my business management knowledge and have a structured self-growth in the required direction.
Having worked in a few start-ups and on many digital media campaigns, I developed an interest in the marketing field. I wish to start my own marketing firm sometime in future, and hence, an MBA from a reputed B-school will complement my goals. In addition to the extensive knowledge about management, I would be able to develop my entrepreneurship skills at a B-school.
Careers360: Why did you choose to join this B-School? Please also name other B-schools which made final admission offers to you.
Sneha Mittal: I received final admission offer from IIM Udaipur, IIM Rohtak, IIM Ranchi, IIM Kashipur, IIM Raipur, XIMB, TISS and IMI. I finally decided to join IIM Udaipur taking into consideration a lot of factors including top-quality faculty, case-study methodology, and encouragement to entrepreneurship, student-exchange programs, beautiful city and happening campus life etc.
Careers360: What was your preparation strategy for CAT 2013?
Sneha Mittal: I had started my preparations after I completed my graduation in 2013. I joined a 3 months’ crash course at IMS.
Regular study, practice, self-analysis and adaptability to tricks were the main stakes for preparation. During the 3 months’ crash course, we were given sheets on each topic.
Our teachers taught us tips and tricks to solve the questions in a fast and efficient manner. I solved the questions and made sure all my doubts were cleared in the class. I solved the remaining questions that day itself. On the next day of class, I started solving the study material provided to us and finished all of it as soon as possible. There were some tricks which appeared difficult at first, and the traditional methods appeared easier to me, but I made sure I solved the questions using the tricks rather than the traditional method. That helped me a lot. The tricks that teachers teach appear difficult at first, but practicing those helps you develop a faster approach of solving the questions.
Careers360: How important is Coaching or Mentoring to crack CAT or other MBA entrance tests?
Sneha Mittal: One of the most important factors instrumental in achieving this percentile in CAT was the right mentorship program and support from family. My teachers guided me to improve on my weaknesses and focus on my strengths.
My parents helped me stay motivated during the whole preparation period, and took special care of helping me eat right, sleep well and study systematically.
Careers360: How did you manage CAT preparation schedule along graduation studies/working hours?
Sneha Mittal: My job joining date was in October 2013, so I had ample time to focus on my preparations. After joining work, it became a little difficult to cope up with work and studies, as there were a lot of exams scheduled on weekends, one after another, but I stayed up late till night to make sure I put in 100% efforts from my end. I dedicated 8-10 hours of time each day for practicing the problems. With the right dedication and hard work, no one can hold you back from achieving your goals.
Careers360: Please share your preparation strategy for the Quantitative Ability & Data Interpretation and Verbal Ability & Logical Reasoning separately?
Sneha Mittal: Quant &DI: The most important point to keep in mind is to stay calm and focused. While solving the QA & DI section, I browsed through the entire paper once. I attempted the easier questions first, and did not waste a lot of time solving the difficult ones. This helped me achieve a score of 98.23 percentile in QA&DI section. Also, if I was unable to solve a question, I did not panic. This is very important as there is a lot of stress while taking the exam, given that one exam decides the future for you.
VA & LR: For the VA&LR section, I solved the LR questions first. As LR was one of my stronger areas, it gave me confidence to solve that area first. With the VA section, there were a few vocab questions which I was not aware of. I did not mark those answers. This helped me maintain my percentile, eliminating the possibility of score reduction due to negative marking.
Careers360: What was your Time Management formula while taking the actual CAT paper?
Sneha Mittal: I allotted 2-3 min to each question. In case I was unable to solve the question, I left that question and moved forward. Most common mistake that people do is getting stuck at a question, which wastes a lot of time. This should be avoided at any cost. Also, in case of vocabulary questions, I did not attempt the questions I was unsure about, as to avoid negative marking.
Click Here to read about Step by Step guide on How to fill CAT 2014
Careers360: What were your strong and weak areas? How did you prepare and what special efforts did you put for improving your weak areas?
Sneha Mittal: My strong areas were reasoning skills and arithmetic. My weak areas were verbal, DI and geometry from QA. For quant I solved as much as I could, asked doubts and analyzed my errors after each test. I discussed my doubts with my friends and teachers, who helped me, improve. For verbal, I read a lot of books and newspaperon a regular basis. I also wrote down all new words I learnt to make sure I remembered and recollected at least a few of them.
Careers360: What is your advice for the MBA aspirants who will take CAT 2014?
Sneha Mittal: Ask your doubts: I would specially like to mention this here, that due to inhibitions and fear of asking a silly doubt, many students don't ask their doubts in the class, and hence suffer. As I did not know anyone from the class, it was easier for me to clear my doubts and ask all kinds of questions that came up in my mind. This helped me develop my concepts better. My friends who were afraid to clear their doubts in class sat with the teachers outside the classroom and cleared their doubts with them. Those who didn't clear their doubts suffered later. Please clear your doubts and don’t be afraid to ask.
CAT is not a difficult exam. The right strategy paired with a lot of practice will guarantee you a good percentile in the CAT examination.
Careers360: How did you divide your timings between preparation and recreational activities? What were the activities that you did besides preparing for the exam?
Sneha Mittal: I headed a market research team at a start-up gocartel.com and handled their social media presence for a while. Due to studies, I left the job. Being a workaholic, I couldn’t stay idle for long, and soon I joined a start-up called hungrytable.in as the digital media marketing head. I also started my own blog to improve on my writing skills. You can read it at genesrecoded.blogspot.in. My blog was nominated as best regional Cuisine blog by Food Bloggers Association of India and featured among top food blogs on homegrown.in (me being youngest food blogger to be featured).I also worked on many all India digital media campaigns like that for Fosters, social institutions like Light4Rural India etc.
At my workplace, I was the elected representative for my batch. I took part in many company competitions for trainees and also won several prizes for the same. I tried to maintain a balance between my studies and extra-curricular activities, which gave me an edge over other candidates in an interview.
I had proper plan designed for whole of my day, where I dedicated ample time to my studies as well as my work. I also managed events and co-founded food-adda.com during that time.
Careers360: What kind of movies do you enjoy watching? Share the name of your favourite movie and the characters that inspire you.
Sneha Mittal: I enjoy watching easy and entertaining movies. I also like watching documentaries. The most inspiring movie is Pursuit of Happiness.
Read more ,
CAT Sample Paper 2020 - The best way to prepare for CAT exam i...
CAT 2020 Exam Syllabus - Download the latest section-wise CAT ...
CAT Answer Key 2020 - Candidates will be able to access the an...
Questions related to CAT
I noticed yesterday that my DOB is wrong in the form.I mailed the authorities but they said noting can be done.Has anyone faced such a problem before?Were they able to give the exam?Did it affect the later process?Is there any solution to this? KIndly help me out.I prepared diligently for this(CAT)
The correction window for CAT 2020 was opened in the month of September 2020. If you had corrected your details that time then it wouldn't have caused any problem for answering the exam. However, if the authorities have said that nothing can be done, you can further contact them asking if you will be allowed to answer the exam or not.
air 81517 ... sc cat 3206 rank... which clgs do i get in all india quota... and Im frm telangana which clg can i get in my state?
Hope you are doing well!
With this rank you can get following colleges based in previous ear cut-off of ranks of colleges
1)Govt Dental College RIMS Kadapa
2)REGIONAL DENTAL COLLEGE, GUWAHATI
3)Patna Dental College and Hospital, Patna
4) Government Dental College, Raipur
5) Goa Dental College & Hospital, Goa
6)Government Dental College & Hospital, Jamnagar
7) Government Dental College, Shimla
8)Dental Institue, RIMS, Ranchi
in Telangana , through AIQ you can get admission in
1)Government Dental College and Hospital, Afsalganj
To know more about the cutoff of NEET 2019 for government colleges(separately for dental and medical courses for all the states.) refer to https://medicine.careers360.com/articles/neet-cut-off-for-government-colleges
You can also use careers360 college predictor link https://medicine.careers360.com/neet-college-predictor?icn=QnA&ici=qna_answer
can a ews category student apply for private medical college? and is the fees same for gen cat. and ews cat. student for private medical college?
The EWS category is an official reservation category that needs to be considered for admission into every college. So college consider EWS category also as other category. You can surely apply for private medical College.
Most of the colleges doesn't have fees as per the reservation. The fees seems to be same for every student. There might be some college that may offer scholarship to reserved category students .
Hope that helps.
I scored 170 Marks Gen cat.neet 2020 My MAMA maternal uncle resides at Dubai as NRI since 18 yrs. How I can take benefit of NRI QUOTA in government medical college in Rajasthan. I am Rajasthan bonafied . What documents are required .
Hope you are doing well,
To apply for the benefit of NRI quota following are the list of documents required
NEET Score Card
A document which can claim that your sponsorer is an NRI ( document can be a Passport, Visa of the sponsorer)
Candidate's Relationship with NRI.
The candidates who had earlier applied under Indian citizenship but whished to changed to NRI quota would have to send relevant documents to the authorities at email@example.com till October 23 up to 10:00 AM.
For more information visit https://news.careers360.com/neet-2020-counselling-mcc-releases-notice-for-admission-under-nri-quota
my all India rank 207718 in neet 2020 Marks 381.category rank 16212 my home town telengana v have sc reservation can u predict b cat colleges which I get
Based on your rank you will get seat in following colleges:
1.Bharati vidyappeeth DU Medical college and hospital.
2.Shri sathya sai medical college and research institute.
3.MGM Medical college and Hospital,Aurangabad.
4.Manipal college of dental sciences,Manipal.
5.VMKV Medical college and hospital,Salem.
for more colleges go through the below link: